PHILADELPHIA — If you happen to take a look at the images from that day, you don’t must squint very arduous to note the incongruity. Ignore the broad smile below the masks, and also you’ll see the feathers painted on it. Look previous the intense orange jersey, and also you’ll discover the acquainted Indian-head brand on his glove. And his blocker. And his pads.
Sure, Eric Semborski lived his dream of being a Philadelphia Flyer on April 1. However he was a Chicago Blackhawk first, and he has the tools to show it.
“They’re undoubtedly my group within the West,” Semborski stated over the cellphone Wednesday night time. “I undoubtedly have two groups now.”
Semborski, or as he’s come to be identified with affection, Blackhawks Legend Eric Semborski, was the native Philadelphia-area youth hockey coach the Hawks frantically summoned to be their emergency backup goaltender final December when Corey Crawford was rushed to the hospital to have his appendix taken out. Semborski wore Crawford’s No. 50 jersey with a brand new nameplate hurriedly connected, took warmups — even stopped a Patrick Kane wrist shot — and acquired to be an NHL participant for a day.
His arrival to the rink that day introduced some much-needed levity to a dressing room that was heavy with concern for Crawford. The Hawks razzed Semborski as a result of he wasn’t carrying a swimsuit, and since he confirmed up 45 minutes earlier than puck drop. They informed him he needed to throw in 200 bucks for the vacation get together, the usual high-quality for kangaroo court docket.
Semborski didn’t play that day, however he turned part of Hawks lore all the identical. The Hawks flew him and his spouse out to Chicago for a recreation in opposition to the Dallas Stars later that month, and hooked him up with all-new goalie tools — emblazoned with the Hawks brand, in fact. So when the Flyers wanted an emergency backup after Steve Mason acquired the flu in April, Semborski was prepared — and decked out in Hawks gear. This time, he caught some grief from the Flyers, who joked that he wanted some orange paint.
Semborski nonetheless lives within the space, however now works as an occasion supervisor on the PPL Middle in Allentown, house to the AHL’s Lehigh Valley Phantoms. It’s greater than an hour away from the Wells Fargo Middle, however Semborski continues to be on the Flyers’ brief checklist of emergency goalies, and nonetheless retains his goalie gear in his automobile (and a few extra at his home), simply in case.
At any time when I’m round, I’m prepared,” he stated.
The Hawks entrance workplace has saved in contact with Semborski, and invited him to Thursday’s morning skate, the place he’ll get to say hello to a few of his former teammates. A Hawk for a day, a Hawk for all times.
Each occasionally, folks acknowledge me or acknowledge my title and ask me about it,” Semborski stated. “It’s fairly cool. It was simply such an awesome story, and other people similar to to listen to about it.”