When asked what Robert Hagg does in the defensive zone to make a goalie's job easier, Carter Hart said Hagg "loves to block shots."
The Flyers' netminder then reconsidered his statement.
"I don’t know if he loves to block them, but he does it," Hart said as he smiled and looked over at Hagg sitting to his left during a video interview earlier this month.
"As a goalie, you've got to love that and appreciate that, just how hard he competes; he’s an intimidating force out there. I know some guys, when they get under his skin, you don’t want to be on that other side. We’re lucky to have Bobby out there on the back end."
On Tuesday in the Flyers' 2-0 win over the Canadiens, Hagg didn't love blocking one blast but he did feel lucky. With the Flyers holding their two-goal lead early in the third period, Montreal defenseman Shea Weber uncorked a slap shot, which caught a piece of Hagg's head and redirected wide of the net. Weber is known to have the hardest shot in the NHL. In the 2020 NHL All-Star Skills during January, Weber's slap shot was clocked at 106.5 mph.
Taking one of those missiles near the head? Extremely scary.
"It takes a lot of balls to do that," Philippe Myers said postgame in a video interview. "We’re really glad he’s OK."
Hagg was fine and stayed in the game, while the moment was not lost on his teammates.
"He’s paying the price out there," Myers, a fellow defenseman, said. "I think it really fires up the boys when he does something like that."
Michael Raffl, who blocked 25 shots over 58 games during the regular season, including a painful one in October, was not envious of his teammate.
"I can’t say it’s a lot of joy or fun jumping in front of that bomb," Raffl said.
Hagg didn't think twice about getting in the way of Weber's slapper.
"I didn’t think at all," Hagg said. "Just tried to be in the shooting lane. I got lucky, it hit me in the equipment. Just got lucky."
The 25-year-old blueliner is a team-orientated guy. He just wants to play a part and the Flyers' tight-knit locker room respects that. Hagg led the club in blocked shots per 60 minutes with 6.20 during the regular season. He entered lineup in Game 3 of the best-of-seven first-round playoff series with Montreal and has blocked five shots over the past two contests. The Flyers haven't allowed a goal in either of those two games as they've grabbed a 3-1 series lead.
Hagg has played his part.
"Bobby plays a hard game, brings a lot of grit," Hart said earlier this month. "Plays the game the right way."
A censored way to put it.