Ever since the Flyers traded for the rights of goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov
we have been hearing that he is not only a fan of the Flyers organization, but also a fan of the city itself.
Well yesterday Bryzgalov and his family proved once again that’s in fact true. Ilya, Jeniya and their two children took a tour of the city they will call home for many years to come.
“I love history. I am always watching the history channel. I also read a lot of history books. I am interested because without history, we don’t have a future. It’s very important to learn about the past.”
|Bryzgalov & family tour the Betsy Ross house. |
Bryz and family also got to tour a Philadelphia icon’s house, one that he’s even depicted on his mask for the upcoming season.
“It was interesting to learn how Betsy lived and worked,” said Bryzgalov on touring the Betsy Ross house. “We saw what kind of appliances she used in her life like the kitchen appliances.”
After spending the last week in the city, Bryzgalov might just feel right at home more than he once thought.
“It reminds me of Russia a little bit. It’s very green here – lots of trees. The downtown area by Rittenhouse Square is a beautiful area. The people are very friendly. I like it a lot.”
While he takes the next couple weeks to get settled in with the Philadelphia area, Bryzgalov has said over and over again the one thing he doesn’t need to feel comfortable in is his crease and his new teammates.
“I’ve been in the league for eight years and every year I see they [Flyers] have good players. They always play in the playoffs except one year. Two years ago the team reached the Final and tried to win the Cup. When I played in Russia, I followed the NHL too and I saw that the Flyers were one of the top organizations who always has the ultimate goal of winning the Cup.”
If there are any doubts to that, Bryzgalov’s past numbers speak for themselves. He posted a 36-20-10 record in 2010-11 with a 2.48 GAA and .921 save percentage in 68 games played with the Coyotes and over the last two years, has combined for 78 wins, which is tied for the most by any goaltender in the NHL. In fact, over the last three seasons, he has appeared in 65 games or more.
That “or more” part is exactly what Bryzgalov is hoping for here. Not just a deep playoff run, but a run that will fulfill his goal, the organization’s goal and the entire city of Philadelphia’s goal as well.
“The Flyers goal is always to win the Stanley Cup. That is what this game is all about. Winning is all that matters.”