Former NHL ref Paul Stewart has a column in the Huffington Post in which he shares an adorable memory with Flyers legend Eric Lindros.
The Flyers were about to play the Devils. Lindros, at the time a rookie, a teenager (19), and coming off missed time due to a knee injury as well as a public incident in a bar in which he had apparently spit beer in a woman's face, was in a bit of a mood.
Stewart's attempt at small talk with Lindros was not well met.
"Hey, Eric. How are things going? How's your dad?" I asked.
The response: "[Bleep] you. Just drop the [bleeping] puck already."
Stewart went on to call Lindros on a high-sticking penalty rigth after the face-off.
Prior to the game, Stewart, as he says he had done in many other cities, had left some posters of Flyers players in the team's locker room for them to sign that would be then auctioned off for charity.
After the game, I want to Turk to collect the poster tube.
"Stewy, you're not going to like this," Evers said. "I don't have them."
"What do you mean you don't have them?" I asked.
"Well, [Mark Recchi] signed the posters but when Eric found out they were for you, he tore every one of them up. I'm sorry about that."
I never spoke to Eric Lindros again.
It's a story that doesn't sound much better even decades after the fact.