The Celtics-Sixers wars of the 1960s, '70s and '80s. The Flyers' dethroning the Bruins as the NHL's best team in the '70s. The Patriots and Eagles meeting in the Super Bowl.
You may not think of Boston and Philadelphia as athletic rivals, but there is a history and a long one between the cities. We're especially aware of it now, with the Celtics and Sixers battling (again) in the playoffs and the Red Sox and Phillies meeting in interleague play.
And it got us thinking ... What do people in Philadelphia think of when they think of Boston? And how about the people in Boston when they think of Philadelphia?
We asked members of our staff and that of CSN New England for their answers. Feel free to provide yours (and please keep it clean).
When I think of Boston, I think of ...
John Gonzalez, CSNPhilly.com columnist
I think of Mayor Tom Menino. He is the last of the old school big city bosses. Menino has been in office since 1993, but his charm has less to do with his electibility than his frequent public gaffes. My favorite Meninoism -- and there have been many, as any Bostonian knows -- came two years ago during a dedication ceremony for the Bobby Orr statue the Bruins planted outside TD Garden.
During a speech, Menino -- fondly known as Mumbles -- said that Boston has remarkable athletes whose actions have become "ionic." That part was good. The next part was even better: "Havlicek stole the ball. Fisk waving the ball fair. Flutie launching the Hail Mary pass. Varitek splitting the uprights.
Last anyone checked, former Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek hadn't split any uprights. That's Menino. It was just one of his many "ionic" moments.
Tim Panaccio, CSNPhilly.com Flyers Insider
When I think of Boston, I think of the North End, the best collection of Italian restaurants in the U.S. in one place. I think of Marriott's Custom House since I am a Marriott timeshare owner. Think of Long Wharf and Faneuil Hall and the waterfront. Then the Bruins and Celtics and Bill Russell, plus my friends who all love in Hopkington. I love Boston. Always have, always will. I just hate their winters, which is why I could never live there. I don't think of the Patriots because I hate what Bill Belichick stands for.
Jim Salisbury, CSNPhilly.com Phillies Insider
When I think of Boston, I think of Yaz, my favorite all-time player, I think of Bobby Orr making a rink-long rush, I think of Stan Jonathan, beating the dawg out of Pierre Bouchard (Jonathan was the best fighter I've ever seen), I think of Pudge waving the ball fair ... I am a native New Englander but have been in Philly for a long time. Love both places.
Reuben Frank, CSNPhilly.com columnist
I'd love to be able to say that when I think of Boston I think of the Sixers beating the Celtics in the 1982 Eastern Conference finals or the Flyers beating the Bruins in the 1974 Stanley Cup finals or the Eagles beating the Patriots in the ... well, never mind. Truth is, when I think of Boston, I think of walking around Faneuil Hall with my daughter. I think of the fine restaurants in the North End. I think of seeing Charlie Chesterman and Sourpatch at the Middle East nightclub the night after an Eagles preseason game in Foxboro.
I think of a stranger and his cute daughter who were visiting Boston College buying me drinks and dinner at the Cask 'n Flagon across the street from Fenway in 1999 after they found out I'd driven up from Philly to Boston for a Red Sox-Yankees playoff game that got rained out. I think of long, rainy, peaceful Sunday runs along the Charles River when I spent the summer in Boston before my senior year of college. Because we might hate Boston's teams. But it's impossible to hate Boston.
When I think of Philly, I think of ...
A. Sherrod Blakely, CSNNE.com Celtics Insider
Santa Claus being pelted with snowballs in 1968. It was before my time, but as a kid who grew up in the 1980s and loved the Eagles (Mike Quick and Ken Clarke were my favorite players), it was pretty sad for me to see hear the tales of how they were just drilling Kris Kringle.
But if you know the story . . . the Santa they had scheduled was a no-show, so they pulled this teenager out of the stands who had a ratty looking Santa outfit on; the weather was horrible and the team sucked, as in '12 Indianapolis Colts sucking. Only problem? They started winning games, so they lost out on drafting O.J. Simpson.
So the last thing they wanted to see on this miserable day during a miserable season was a miserable looking Santa Claus.
But it set the stage for me being like most Philly fans -- passionate about sports, even if at times it's displaced.
Tom E. Curran, CSNNE.com Patriots Insider
Well, naturally, I think of The Doors. Right there at the 2:25 mark on that You Tube clip, you'll hear the six words that lodged in my head when I was about 13 and have never left.
"Hey Philadelphia . . . do you FEEL all right?!"
That's what I think of first. First because Jim Morrison beckoned in a way that seemed to presume he was speaking to the entire living, breathing city.
That and because the word "Philadelphia" is right up there with my favorite place names along with Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Cincinnati and Saskatoon. So that's what I think of first.
But when I heard of Philadelphia first, Kiki Dee and Elton John were begging us through the power of AM radio to allow Philadelphia Freedom to shine on them. And that was fine. I think I first sensed a Philly-Boston rivalry in 1976 when the country and all us third graders were overrun by all things Bicentennial and we heard about the roles played in Philadelphia, Washington, New York and Boston. I know a lot of stuff went down in Philly, but I felt a little house proud that we got things started.
Sports-wise? I was peeved that Bobby Jones, George McGinnis and Dr. J beat the Celtics in the playoffs and happy as hell that they lost to the Trail Blazers. And Andrew Toney was the first villain from an opposing team I remember wanting to be just like as I copied his straight-out-from-the-forehead jumper on my dirt court out back in Pembroke, Mass.
I remember imitating Dave Zinkoff and kicking a leg out like Lloyd Free when I shot and loving Wilbert Montgomery and buying a Harold Carmichael jersey because he caught passes in 117 straight games.
I guess I remember a lot of things because, from the time I realized the world extended beyond Boston and Massachusetts in which there were other cities and other pale, freckle-faced kids screaming for their teams too, Philly's always swirled in my mind along with New York and Baltimore. Places that had a personality.
Joe Haggerty, CSNNE.com Bruins Insider
A rabid fan base that takes it way over the line far too often. Everybody knows the stories of Phillies fans throwing batteries at J.D. Drew after he spurned them following the draft or Eagles fans famously booing Santa Claus.
But perhaps the Flyers fans have behaved worst of them all in recent years, and give a glimpse at the fanatical sports following in the City of Brotherly Love.
Three years ago when the Flyers and Canadiens battled in the Eastern Conference Finals, a group of Flyers fans destroyed a car in the Wells Fargo Center parking lot with Quebec license plates. The car belonged to Montreal Gazette columnist Pat Hickey, who had to figure out a way to get back to Canada when his car was severely damaged by the fans.
The idiot fans were eventually nabbed because they brazenly bragged about their acts of sports vandalism on Facebook.
Just this past season a New York Rangers fan was pummeled badly at Philadelphias landmark steak-and-cheese joints (Pats and Genos) after the Flyers fell short in the Winter Classic. In the interest of full disclosure, Im more of a Tony Lukes guy myself. But once again the video detailing the assault was posted on YouTube, and ended up assisting the police in catching the Flyers fanassailant.
So weve learned two lessons here: Philly fans are as passionate as you can get sometimes to their detriment. Theyre also unable to get away with their Philly fan gone wrong act these days in the age of mighty social media.
Sean McAdam, CSNNE.com Red Sox Insider
The end of the Bruins' dynasty. Losing to the Flyers in the Stanley Cup finals in 1974 marked the end of the Big, Bad Bruins. Fred Shero had an innovative game plan which involved the Flyers' forwards aggressively attacking Bobby Orr and Bernie Parent was brilliant in goal.
Ever since, any mention of Kate Smith or the Spectrum brings back bad memories. My one and only visit to the Spectrum came at a Springsteen show in October 2009, shortly before it closed for good. I was amazed at how small it felt.
Rich Levine, Author of CSNNE.coms blog, Standing Room Only
For me, it's Labor Day 2003. On this particular year, the holiday fell on Sept. 1 Moving Day. But believe me, no one in Boston moved a thing until the Sox were done with a random, ridiculous and obviously memorable interleague make-up game against the Phillies at the Vet.
Philly had scored three runs in the eighth to take a 7-6 lead, but the Sox exploded for six runs in the top of the ninth highlighted by Trot Nixon's grand slam off Turk Wendell to give Boston the win and kick start its run to the 2003 ALCS. Of course, that season ended in misery, but that random Labor Day comeback is still what I think of when I think Philadelphia. (Second Place: The scene in National Treasure when Nic Cage breaks into Independence Hall to uncover a pair of Ben Franklin's bifocals.)