Sitting at his locker and pulling off pads following a Monday morning practice, Flyers defenseman Nick Grossmann looked up and cracked a smile when someone asked if there are any Swedish restaurants in Philadelphia.
“Nothing,” the Stockholm, Sweden native shot back. “Nothing, man!”
The Flyers, who play the New York Rangers tonight at Madison Square Garden, have Wednesday off, and Grossmann is thinking of spending the early evening in the kitchen of his Philadelphia apartment whipping up a traditional Swedish meal for his American girlfriend and himself.
“I’ll cook the classic mashed potatoes and Swedish meatballs,” he said. “You gotta make your own. You can’t get them already made up. That’s cheating.
“I enjoy cooking because we’re on the road so much and eating in restaurants all the time, so once you’re home it’s nice to get a home-cooked meal.”
It’ll be nice to have a day off, too, because Grossmann probably has some sore spots from throwing his body in harm’s way so much this season. In 23 games, he’s blocked 66 shots, more than anyone in hockey.
“I had no idea,” Grossmann said. “I know I’m not going to be up there in the goals column. Pucks just see to be hitting me lately.”
Grossmann, whose offensive contribution has been a goal and two assists, is big and strong at 6-foot-3 and 230 pounds, but using his body to block 90-to-100-mph slap shots can be excruciatingly painful.
“It’s all different,” he said. “A few games you can get hit in bad spots and you feel like you’ve been run over by a truck. You can block three shots and they all feel like they could break your foot. Then a few games you can block 10 shots and nothing hurts. Lately they were all good spots. I barely noticed. I couldn’t feel anything.”
Flyers' Grossmann a shot-blocking 'mountain of a man'
Courier-Post | Mar 5