Sunday, March 7, 2010

Ken Linseman of the Rat Patrol

Another hockey player, another great guy. This time it was Kenny Linseman at the Ultimate Collectibles Show, which was held in Oaks (PA), just north of Philadelphia. Linseman is still a fan favorite in the Philly area.
Linseman started his career with the Birmingham Bulls of the old WHA. After one season, he joined the Philadelphia Flyers, where he played for four seasons (although it seemed like much more). After the Flyers, he spent 7.5 seasons with the Edmonton Oilers and Boston Bruins, before rejoining the Flyers for one more season. Another year with Edmonton and one final year with the Toronto Maple Leafs would close out Linseman's excellent career. Linseman won a Stanley Cup with the Oilers and lost in the finals once each with the Flyers and Bruins.
His first stay in Philadelphia ended after the 1981-82 season. At the show, you would have thought he was part of a Stanley Cup winner last season. the fans could not get enough of Linseman and he seemed to return that feeling for them.
When I asked him about all of it, he just said, "Isn't this great?". Yeah, it is great. It's great that the fans appreciate Linseman and it is even greater that he appreciates them. Linseman looked like he was having a blast.
Once again, I have to point out that Linseman was listed as 5'11" and 180 pounds during his playing days. He seems a bit lighter, although still in excellent shape. He also seemed about 5'9". It's hard to believe that he played 16 seasons (860 games) of outstanding hockey at his size.
Kenny Linseman and me in Oaks, PA-October 2009.

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