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Elias Waits for Sykora to Drop Him a Line

So this is an article from the 2003 playoffs that I didn't read at the time because I wasn't as psychotic about reading news articles back then (although I was still psychotic about other things). It's about the lurve between Petr and Patty, and ends with a truly horrifying image.

Elias Waits for Sykora to Drop Him a Line

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J., May 26 - If the Niedermayer brothers - Scott of the Devils and Rob of the Ducks - have the closest relationship of any participants in the Stanley Cup finals, Patrik Elias and Petr Sykora might be a close second.

Elias and Sykora were practically inseparable as linemates on the Devils. After Sykora was traded last summer to the Anaheim Mighty Ducks, Elias said he and Sykora spoke by phone at least once a week during the regular season. Elias, a left wing, said today that it would feel weird playing against Sykora in the Cup finals, which begin Tuesday night at Continental Arena.

Elias does not know how Sykora, who plays right wing, feels about the situation. "He hasn't returned my phone calls for four days," Elias said.

"It doesn't have to be about hockey," Elias said of a possible topic for a phone conversation. "But that's fine. I guess he's trying to focus. I'll try to get in his ear on the ice."

When Sykora was asked if he would try to phone Elias or have dinner with him during the finals, Sykora said, "You can't do that."

To which Elias replied, "He's been pretty true to his word."

Sykora, who broke into the N.H.L. with the Devils during the 1995-96 season, felt a little homesick early in the season.

Elias said: "We spoke a lot more on the phone during the regular season than we ever did when he was here. That probably shows he missed what we had here. I did, too."

For the better part of four seasons, Elias and Sykora helped form the A-Line - one of the league's best forward units - with Jason Arnott, who was later traded to Dallas. But it seems Sykora, who has a view of the Pacific Ocean from his home in Newport Beach, Calif., has put New Jersey behind him.

"Sykie has found a great place to play, where there's not much pressure on him with Paul Kariya and Adam Oates around," Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur said of Sykora, who became the first player other than Kariya or Teemu Selanne to lead the Mighty Ducks in goals since Anaheim's inaugural season, 1993-94.

After a slow start, Sykora scored 34 goals, one off his career high in 2000-1. He scored only two goals in the first three rounds of the playoffs, but they were among the most important for the Ducks. Sykora's goal at 48 seconds of the fifth overtime gave visiting Anaheim a 4-3 victory over Dallas in Game 1 of the second-round series. It put an end to the second-longest game in the N.H.L.'s modern era and gave the Ducks the momentum they needed to win the series in six games. Sykora scored the only goal of Game 1 of the Western Conference finals, which Anaheim won at 8 minutes 6 seconds of the second overtime. The Mighty Ducks went on to sweep the Minnesota Wild to advance to the Cup finals for the first time.

Scoring big goals is nothing new for Sykora. During the 2000 playoffs, he led the champion Devils with nine. In 2001, Sykora again led the Devils with 10 goals, as they reached the Cup finals for the second consecutive season.

But Sykora did not score a goal for the Devils during the playoffs last season, and he sat out two games with an ankle sprain. The Carolina Hurricanes eliminated the Devils in the first round. A few months later, the Ducks obtained Sykora by sending Jeff Friesen and Oleg Tverdovsky to the Devils.

"I was kind of confused," Sykora said. "I didn't know what to think. But I feel like I have a brand-new life now. It's worked out great."

Sykora, who had nothing but praise for the Devils' organization today, still has plenty of friends on his former team. The Devils' captain, Scott Stevens, said over the weekend that he also wanted to say hello to Sykora on the ice. "Hopefully, it will be when he's on his back," Stevens said with a laugh.

I don't know what to say about Elias wanting to get in his ear, and Scott Stevens wanting him on his back. :( I do like how his reaction to being traded was confusion, though. :P

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oh scott is so bold *gigles*

*pets petr*

The "with a laugh" is especially upsetting!

Oh, god, I want to take them both home and keep them forever and ever and ever.

I wonder if they still talk on the phone. *sniffle*

Aww, poor Elias. ;)

Also, Scott Stevens scares me.

But then they got to play together again in Magnitogorsk... where Patty contracted hepatitis A and almost died. Hrm.

He was a scary, scary guy.

I make a lot of jokes about the hepatitis (because of the other way you can get it), but honestly, that really sucks. And Elias is growing on me like crazy. Poor guy.

This reminds me, I read somewhere that Elias cried during Steven's retirement ceremony. Maybe he did some comforting of Patty after Sykora abandoned him.

Well, if there's one person where you had to make the case that he's living an alternative lifestyle, Patty is kind of an easy target, with his interest in fashion, going to spas and watching Broadway shows.

I think Petr still lurved him, but he's a very competitive guy, and losing in the SCF again really crushed him. :(

If ever this icon was needed....

*cries* That whole story makes me so tearful, how Patty and Jason stole the Cup to bring it to Petr in the hospital (with Jason forcing the doors open, hahaha) and then they all cried together. Ahh, it's making me weepy now.

*laughs* it's so much going back and re-reading articles with the slash goggles on.

awww. sykora how i miss thee as a devil.

and you're an oiler now, so i must hate you. *le sigh*

I think I'm obsessed with the A-Line because I had no idea who they were as people (didn't even know what they looked like!) when I liked them on the Devils. And only after Patty and Jason got traded away that I started reading all the articles about them.

*ahem* I like him best as a Devil. :)

This will always be my favorite A-line article. I only wish that I had loved them as much as I do now, as when they were all still here..

That one is the weepiest one. *cries*

I still think we should bring them both back. Even if we don't need them, and we don't have room under the cap..hey, they don't need to get paid (I'm sure they'd disagree, but hey!)! They can be together and have more articles written like this, and then the Devils can have a show like Shark Byte only make it all about their line (which Lou would never go for, but hey!), and it'll be just pure happiness. :)

Does New Jersey still have that rule about facial hair?

I do believe so, along with the long hair. I remember when Grant (Marshall) came over here, he had a goatee and had always had one, but he shaved it for his first game. Granted, that was a few years ago, but I remember reading in Marty's book that he said something about the no facial hair rule.

I think we'd have to get rid of that for them to come back. Both of them are sporting goatees/longish hair. It would be a price to pay.

I would rather Petr just shave. :P

I think the hair is kind of a lost cause...

Agreed. That's kind of his charm, though. :)

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