New York Rangers defenceman Tony DeAngelo grew up in Washington Twp. NJ, just 15 minutes from the Wells Fargo Center in South Philadelphia.

He grew up a die-hard Flyers fan, going to as many games as he could and watched the rest of them on TV.

"Anyone that grew up in Washington Twp. with me, knows I was as big of a fan as you could be as a kid," DeAngelo said as a guest on The Sports Bash.  "I looked up to all the players who played on the team."

In 2014 the NHL Draft was held in Philadelphia and the Flyers had their chance to draft DeAngelo.  The 24-year old has become one of the top scoring defenders in the NHL with 15 goals and 53 points in 68 games this season, but his hometown team passed on him taking Travis Sanheim instead with the 17th overall pick.

DeAngelo was taken five picks later by the Tampa Bay Lighting at No. 19.

"After that day, my Flyers-fandom was done," laughed DeAngelo.

After starting his career with the Lighting, DeAngerlo moved on to play a year for the Arizona Coyotes before being traded to New York where he has become on of the top scoring defenceman in the game.

"To be a Flyers fan and grow up in our area, and play for the Rangers, they root for me personally, but not my team," explained DeAngelo.  But there is no place I rather be than New York."

While he is happy in New York, he did acknowledge that the Flyers are on the rise.

"The Flyers started building something really nice," admitted DeAngelo.

DeAngelo mentioned the addition of Kevin Hayes, one of his good friends from their days in New York, as one of the reasons the Flyers have been able to pull it all together this season.

"That signing has been massive for them," DeAngelo stated. "He's balanced out the top six, he kills penalties, he's been a really good fit for them and he played for Alain Vigneault before so it was easy for him to fit in."

"They are really good, they are deep, they win face-offs, they are good on both ends of the ice.  They have some high-end forwards, and some really good defense and the kid Hart is a really good goalie."

"The Flyers have become a really good team. I'm not happy to see that the Flyers are getting good, but I have to admit they are getting good."

KEEP READING: Flyers Top Goal Scorers Each Year Since 2010


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