At the start of last season, the Penguins watched a clip from the movie Semi-Pro in the locker room. In the movie, a washed up basketball player ends up boxing a bear as part of the post-game entertainment. Before he gets in the ring with the the Bear, the animal trainer tells him that if he’s in any real danger, just yell out “Spumoni.” That’s his safe word.
“Flash forward to a game a few weeks later. I get caught out on a long shift with Rob Scuderi, and we are getting peppered. We just couldn’t get the puck out of our end or even get a whistle, and Marc-Andre Fleury is standing on his head making save after save. Flower is hooting and hollering after every shot like he usually does. And I mean we just can’t get the puck out. We’re so gassed. Finally, another shot comes in from the point and Scuderi yells out, “Spumoni! Spumoni!”
“I’m in the corner just dying. We eventually get a whistle and I’m practically doubled over laughing, trying to hide it as I’m skating to the bench. If Scuds would’ve finished the scene with, “If you have a small child, use it as a shield!” they probably would’ve had to stretcher me off the ice.”