Football, mashed potatoes and ham. Flyers break down their go-to Thanksgiving sides and plans

Football, mashed potatoes and ham. Flyers break down their go-to Thanksgiving sides and plans

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Football, mashed potatoes and ham. Flyers break down their go-to Thanksgiving sides and plans
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From the food — cranberry sauce from the can is always a requirement, especially on Garnet Hathaway’s table — to the football, family time, and traditions, Thanksgiving is a special day.

For Connecticut native Cam Atkinson, the day is typically spent with family, including his in-laws who always come to town. As he put it, it’s a time to “just get together, cook a bunch of food and just hang out.” But although turkey is the typical go-to, Atkinson is reaching across the table for something a bit different.

“I’m a big HoneyBaked Ham fan,” he said, before confirming the obvious, “We do turkey, but we also do HoneyBaked Ham. … My wife’s huge into mashed potatoes; we had to have a mashed potato bar at our wedding, that’s how much she loves mashed potatoes. But I’m not a big side fan, so HoneyBaked Ham for me.”

Now in his eighth NHL season, the Ontario-born Travis Konecny has gotten more into the American version of Thanksgiving — thanks to the football and the stuffing balls his wife bakes, which he described as “unbelievable” and “delicious.”

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Louie Belpedio also is a big stuffing guy. He’ll head to his fiancee Alyssa’s home in New Jersey where her grandmother — “a fantastic cook,” he was sure to point out — and aunt are the ones whipping up a feast. His first experience was last year when he was with the Phantoms, and he’s looking forward to a return visit as a Flyer.

Speaking of last season, Bobby Brink and his then-roommate Ronny Attard went over to Dickey’s Barbecue in Lehigh Valley. Brink let it slip that he’s “not much of a cook” and figures he’ll head out to eat this year too. But he did disclose his favorite side is cheesy mashed potatoes, especially the kind his aunt makes.

Nick Seeler and Sean Couturier also are big mashed potato guys. But the Minnesotan and Canadian, respectively, have slightly different requests. While Seeler said he probably has gravy once a year — and, of course, that once a year just happens to be on Thanksgiving — Couturier, who was born in Phoenix and spent a few years in Germany before settling in New Brunswick, is specific about his type of gravy.

“I’m more of a thin guy, not too thick. I don’t like it when it’s thick and has chunks. No chunks,” he said matter-of-factly. The forward added that he’ll spend the holiday with family and teammates noting, “It’s kind of our own family down here.”

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Gravy on his stuffing also is key to a great turkey day — a turkey leg day, specifically — for Ryan Poehling. He spent a number of Thanksgivings at his uncle’s farm in Hinckley, Minn., where he would ride horses “and just watch football all day.”

For the record, Poehling is a big Vikings fan.

Cam York grew up a Raiders fan out in California, but as a Philadelphian for a few years, he’s become a big Eagles fan. He typically spends his Thanksgiving watching football and enjoying his mom’s cooking.

”My mom makes this really good mac and cheese, the noodle is the shape of a seashell,” he said. “It’s just like a peaceful, really yummy side that she makes.”

A yummy side for Noah Cates is something that involves sweet potato: mashed or the kind with marshmallows on top and brown sugar baked in. But if you’re looking for the perfect side combo, it’s Hathaway who likes stuffing and cranberry sauce.

“Just put them together,” he said.

But what type of cranberry sauce?

“Can, fantastic. Homemade, fantastic,” Hathaway confirmed before finishing with the best reasoning behind going for the can, “You can cut it up in slices.”

Perfect.


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Football, mashed potatoes and ham. Flyers break down their go-to Thanksgiving sides and plans

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