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Friday, July 1, 2011
Talbot's move to Philly just seems wrong

By Scott Burnside

You wonder if Maxime Talbot ever in a million years imagined himself saying that he just thought the Philadelphia Flyers would be the right fit for him.

The right fit?

Imagine Joe Hatfield wandering over to the McCoy family farm and saying he thought this would be a good place for him to hang out for the next eight or nine years.

Still, that's where Talbot found himself Friday, talking about winning a Cup in Philadelphia.

Somehow it just seems wrong, a crime against nature if you will.

We remember watching Talbot scrap with Daniel Carcillo in Game 6 of the 2009 Eastern Conference quarterfinals in Philadelphia. The Flyers led 3-0 in the game and looked ready to force a seventh game back in Pittsburgh when Talbot threw down way outside his weight class with Carcillo.

He took a pounding, but the Penguins stormed back to win the game and eliminated the Flyers on home ice. Many credited Talbot's truculence as a catalyst to that win.

Later that spring, Talbot immortalized himself in Pittsburgh sports folklore by scoring both goals in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals as Pittsburgh upended Detroit in Game 7 at Joe Louis Arena to bring home the Pens' first Cup since 1992.

The outgoing, irreverent Talbot said Friday he thought he was going to play his whole career in Pittsburgh. But the Penguins couldn't accommodate his salary demands.

Now, he's a Flyer, having signed a five-year deal worth $9 million. Go figure.

"I wanted to go with a team that had a chance to win a championship this year and maybe more than one," Talbot said.

The Talbot signing was part two of "Let's Tick Off The Penguins" day in Philadelphia.

After Jaromir Jagr had annoyed Detroit and Pittsburgh to the point that they both publicly withdrew from their courting of the enigmatic star, Jagr signed a one-year deal worth $3.3 million to become a Flyer.

Never mind the fairytale return to Pittsburgh, now Jagr will be Public Enemy No. 1 when the cross-state rivals face off against each other six times next season.

Oh well, at least he'll have company in the Flyer dressing room over in the "ex-Penguin" corner.