Chris Pronger: True Villian or Just Someone We Love To Hate?

Melissa Bauer-Herzog@mbauerherzogCorrespondent IJune 4, 2010

PHILADELPHIA - JUNE 02:  Jonathan Toews #19 of the Chicago Blackhawks attempts a shot on goal against Michael Leighton #49 and Chris Pronger #20 of the Philadelphia Flyers in Game Three of the 2010 NHL Stanley Cup Final at Wachovia Center on June 2, 2010 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

He’s stolen pucks and insulted the Blackhawks many times over, but is Chris Pronger really the villain of the playoffs or is he just messing with everyone?

Pronger obviously loves to play with the media, often giving reporters frustrating answers to their questions (or giving them a question for their question).  Even if the media doesn’t like to admit it, they need Pronger.

The defense man for the Flyers has done a lot to pull the media’s attention to him by being a smart alec during his interviews and giving them exactly what they want, even if it is in a round-about way.

While I am not a Pronger fan, I do find him highly entertaining. 

His interviews almost always make me laugh and his antics on the ice bring life to a sport that has many players that refuse to show their true game personalities in front of the cameras in the media center.  What you see with Pronger on the ice is what you’ll see off the ice, even if it isn’t exactly pleasing.

The Cup final looked to be pretty boring in character development with no true villain to stick out.  Sure, Carcillo can be pointed to as a potential villain.  But his on-the-ice antics are just hilarious, no matter how big of a fight he tries to start.  It’s hard to make a villain out of a guy that’s sole purpose is to make a game more physical and has barely talked to the media.

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On the other hand Pronger willingly takes the villain spotlight for no reason other than to mess with people’s heads.

In a series where you have serious businesslike players who refuse to take off their game faces, it is fun to watch a player that is enjoying his time in the spotlight where he is being compared to other evil but entertaining characters.

Pronger may rub fans everywhere the wrong way, but those same fans are the ones that tune in to every game just to see what he’ll do next.