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OccamsRazor

Today in Flyers History....

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On this day in 1974, the Flyers became the first modern expansion team to win the Stanley Cup.

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Today was quite the busy day for the 

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, both on and off the ice, so let’s get right into it with one of the more important transactions in franchise history: the 

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 trade.

On May 22, 1970 the Flyers traded Darrryl Edestrand and Larry Killop in exchange for Ashbee in what was virtually regarded at the time as a minor-league trade. But the deal would turn out to be far from a “minor” deal in any way as Ashbee emerged for the Flyers as a 31-year-old rookie to provide steady play and a competitive warrior-like style to the team while playing through a myriad of injuries over his short career.

Though his career was cut short by an eye injury in the 1974 

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 Semifinals, Ashbee helped establish the Flyers’ blue collar identity on the ice and was a pivotal force in the Stanley Cup the team won without him that thereafter. Forced to retire due to the injury, Ashbee joined Fred Shero on the bench as the Flyers won back-to-back Cups in 1975.

Ashbee’s hockey legacy lives on Philadelphia today as the team award for most outstanding defenseman is awarded in his name.

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On this day back 2001 the Flyers traded Daymond Langkow to the Flames for a 2003 first round pick amd a 2002 second round pick.

 

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So just looking back on this did the Flyers win this trade???

 

I guess the quick short answer is yes because the second rounder Joni Pitkanen and they later flipped Carter for Jake and a pick turned into Coots.

 

But could the Flyers maybe used Langkow more immediate help and maybe help them hoist a Cup the year they lost to the Bolts who went on and won their only Cup???

 

Guess we'll never know really but with nothing else to talk about besides the lately norm i say maybe Langkow could have help the Flyers in 2003-04.

 

I mean since the trade look at the numbers (also no one knows if he would have produced at the same rate had he stayed in Philly).

 

Langkow after the trade to Phoenix: He put up 202 goals and and 282 assists (484 points) before leaving in the 2011-12 season which interestingly enough was the last year Cater played in Philly. 

 

And it wasn't until 05-06 till Carter started play for the Flyers and before the trade put up only 181 goals and 162 assists for 343 points.

 

So it makes me wonder if Langkow could have helped the Flyers more especially between 2001-02 till 2005-06 before Carter was ready.

 

Hhhhhmmmm seems he would have.

 

Even between when the trade of Langkow and before Carter showed up he put up 79 goals and 117 assists for 196 points.

 

Langkow: 484 points

Carter 343 points

 

Sure seems like the Flyers could have used the extra production especially the 21 goals for 52 points in the 2003-04 season and into the playoffs.

 

Even down the middle he would have outproduced the Flyers centers from a goal scoring perspective (4th overall on the team behind Recci, Gagne and Leclair).

 

Langkow 21 goals

Handzus 20 goals

Roenick 19 goals

Primeau 7 goals

Zhamnov 5 goals

Lapointe 5 goals

 

Just we'll never know #wonthetrades

 

Anyways just thinking aloud. What if....

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1 hour ago, OccamsRazor said:

 

 

 

 

So it makes me wonder if Langkow could have helped the Flyers more especially between 2001-02 till 2005-06 before Carter was ready.

 

Hhhhhmmmm seems he would have.

 

Even between when the trade of Langkow and before Carter showed up he put up 79 goals and 117 assists for 196 points.

 

Langkow: 484 points

Carter 343 points

 

 

 

For sure he could have helped more than Carter did when he wasn't playing. Just like Couturier and Voracek are helping out a lot more than Langkow would be now. 

 

But it is something to ponder especially during that run. I wonder if he could have played D better than Sami? 

 

 I thought it was a good trade at the time (because that draft was already thought of being a generational one) and I still think it was.

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6 hours ago, flyercanuck said:

For sure he could have helped more than Carter did when he wasn't playing. Just like Couturier and Voracek are helping out a lot more than Langkow would be now. 

 

Captain Obvious | Captain obvious, Funny memes, Memes

 

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Posted (edited)
12 hours ago, OccamsRazor said:

 

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Depends on how dehydrated they are.

 

 And why ask this "So it makes me wonder if Langkow could have helped the Flyers more especially between 2001-02 till 2005-06 before Carter was ready." 

Edited by flyercanuck

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4) Today in Flyers History: Oct. 13, 1988

In a 7-6 road win over the Minnesota North Stars, the Flyers tied a franchise single-game record by scoring six power play goals. Brian Propp compiled a hat trick, scoring all three of his goals on the man advantage. Both Tim Kerr and Pelle Eklund racked up four-point nights (1G,3A).
Overall, 10 of the combined 13 goals scored in the game came on power plays. The Flyers went 6-for-11 and Minnesota went 4-for-12.

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5) Today in Flyers History: October 15 edition:

* 1971: The Flyers traded fan favorite center Andre Lacroix (the leading scorer early in franchise history before Bob Clarke came along) and later the all-time leading scorer in the World Hockey Association to the Chicago Blackhawks in exchange for defenseman Rick Foley.

* 1997: The Flyers traded defenseman/winger Jason Bowen, originally a 1992 first-round pick who struggled to find consistency or a regular position at the NHL level, to the Edmonton Oilers in exchange for tough guy winger Brantt Myhres. Little-known fact: The 169 penalty minutes that Myhres racked up in just 23 games for the Flyers in 1997-98 was the highest PIMs-per-game (7.35) in franchise history. Prorated over a full season, he'd have broken the NHL single-season record 472 penalty minutes that Dave Schultz (6.21 PIM per game) compiled over 76 games in 1974-75.

* 1999: At the insistence of head coach Roger Neilson, the Flyers purchased the contract of checking winger Jody Hull from the Atlanta Thrashers, bringing him back to the Flyers a few months after Atlanta claimed Hull from Philadelphia in the 1999 Expansion Draft. Neilson inquired to general manager Bob Clarke several times before the season about the possibility of bringing Hull back, and the GM finally relented.

Clarke then delegated to assistant general manager Paul Holmgren the task of informing team chairman Ed Snider that Hull was coming back.

"Wait!" Snider exclaimed. "Is it too late? Can't we just tell Roger to forget about it?!"

Snider had nothing at all against Hull as a person but was not a fan of his ultra-defensive style of play. Oddly enough, Hull collected double-digit goals (10) for Philly that season; the first time in several years the former 20-goal-scorer (1995-96 for the Florida Panthers) had reached even five goals.

Going back to their time together with the New York Rangers and Panthers, Neilson had long valued Hull because he was a good penalty killer, adhered well to structure and always made safe plays with the puck. Snider and Clarke both felt Hull was a little TOO safe and defensive-minded, but were ultimately on board with giving their head coach a role player in whom he had the utmost confidence.

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2) Today in Flyers History: Oct. 18, 1967

After losing each of their first two games of a season-opening road trip, the Philadelphia Flyers captured a 2-1 road victory over the St. Louis Blues for the first win in franchise history. Team captain Lou Angotti's goal in the final minute of the second period sent the game to intermission tied at 1-1 before the late Ed Hoekstra's second career NHL goal put Philly ahead with 7:40 remaining in the game. Doug Favell (34 saves on 35 shots) took care of the rest.

Earlier in the day, the Flyers traded their 1970 first-round pick to Boston Bruins in exchange for winger Rosie Paiement. Hard-nosed on the ice, fun-loving off the ice, Paiement became an early fan favorite both for the AHL's Quebec Aces and the Flyers. Paiement holds the distinction of scoring the first playoff hat trick in Flyers' history, accomplishing that feat in the 1968 Stanley Cup quarterfinals against the Blues.

More notably, the Bruins used the 1970 first-round pick (4th overall) to select Peterborough Petes center Rick MacLeish. Months later, the Bruins flipped MacLeish to Philadelphia in exchange for Mike "Shakey" Walton to complete a three-team trade that sent Bernie Parent to the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for veteran goalie Bruce Gamble, Walton and a 1971 1st-round Draft pick (Pierre Plante). MacLeish, of course, went to become a Flyers' Hall of Fame member, and scoring the series winning goal in Game 6 of the 1974 Stanley Cup Final against Boston.

3) Today in Flyers History: Oct. 18, 1984

In one of the most lopsided victories in franchise history, the Flyers strafed the Vancouver Canucks, 13-4. The 13 goals Philly scored in the game tied a franchise record. Philadelphia scored four times in the first period, five in the second, and four in the third.

Brian Propp and Ilkka Sinisalo both compiled hat tricks in the game, while Tim Kerr tallied twice. Murray Craven, Brad McCrimmon, Dave Poulin, Rick Tocchet and Peter Zezel each rounded out the scoring with a goal apiece.

Propp and Sinisalo's feat marked the third time in team history that two Flyers recorded a hat trick in the same game; accomplished previously by Bobby Clarke/Ross Lonsberry against Detroit in a 12-2 win on Feb. 2, 1974 and Dave Poulin/Sinisalo in a 13-4 trouncing of Pittsburgh on March 22, 1984. Later in the 1984-85 season, Poulin and Kerr did on March 7 in a 9-6 victory over Washington.

On Dec. 18, 1986, Poulin and Kerr combined to do it again in a 9-4 win over the New York Islanders. It was not until Dec. 11, 2006 when Joffrey Lupul and R.J. Umberger each had hat tricks in an 8-2 humiliation of the Penguins that two Flyers combined for the sixth such occurrence in team regular season history.

The first time that it was accomplished by two Flyers in a playoff game came in Game 2 of the 2012 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals (April 13, 2012) when Sean Couturier and Claude Giroux scored three apiece in an 8-5 win over the Penguins.

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7 hours ago, intheslot said:

2) Today in Flyers History: Oct. 18, 1967

After losing each of their first two games of a season-opening road trip, the Philadelphia Flyers captured a 2-1 road victory over the St. Louis Blues for the first win in franchise history. Team captain Lou Angotti's goal in the final minute of the second period sent the game to intermission tied at 1-1 before the late Ed Hoekstra's second career NHL goal put Philly ahead with 7:40 remaining in the game. Doug Favell (34 saves on 35 shots) took care of the rest.

Earlier in the day, the Flyers traded their 1970 first-round pick to Boston Bruins in exchange for winger Rosie Paiement. Hard-nosed on the ice, fun-loving off the ice, Paiement became an early fan favorite both for the AHL's Quebec Aces and the Flyers. Paiement holds the distinction of scoring the first playoff hat trick in Flyers' history, accomplishing that feat in the 1968 Stanley Cup quarterfinals against the Blues.

More notably, the Bruins used the 1970 first-round pick (4th overall) to select Peterborough Petes center Rick MacLeish. Months later, the Bruins flipped MacLeish to Philadelphia in exchange for Mike "Shakey" Walton to complete a three-team trade that sent Bernie Parent to the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for veteran goalie Bruce Gamble, Walton and a 1971 1st-round Draft pick (Pierre Plante). MacLeish, of course, went to become a Flyers' Hall of Fame member, and scoring the series winning goal in Game 6 of the 1974 Stanley Cup Final against Boston.

3) Today in Flyers History: Oct. 18, 1984

In one of the most lopsided victories in franchise history, the Flyers strafed the Vancouver Canucks, 13-4. The 13 goals Philly scored in the game tied a franchise record. Philadelphia scored four times in the first period, five in the second, and four in the third.

Brian Propp and Ilkka Sinisalo both compiled hat tricks in the game, while Tim Kerr tallied twice. Murray Craven, Brad McCrimmon, Dave Poulin, Rick Tocchet and Peter Zezel each rounded out the scoring with a goal apiece.

Propp and Sinisalo's feat marked the third time in team history that two Flyers recorded a hat trick in the same game; accomplished previously by Bobby Clarke/Ross Lonsberry against Detroit in a 12-2 win on Feb. 2, 1974 and Dave Poulin/Sinisalo in a 13-4 trouncing of Pittsburgh on March 22, 1984. Later in the 1984-85 season, Poulin and Kerr did on March 7 in a 9-6 victory over Washington.

On Dec. 18, 1986, Poulin and Kerr combined to do it again in a 9-4 win over the New York Islanders. It was not until Dec. 11, 2006 when Joffrey Lupul and R.J. Umberger each had hat tricks in an 8-2 humiliation of the Penguins that two Flyers combined for the sixth such occurrence in team regular season history.

The first time that it was accomplished by two Flyers in a playoff game came in Game 2 of the 2012 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals (April 13, 2012) when Sean Couturier and Claude Giroux scored three apiece in an 8-5 win over the Penguins.

RJ Umberger is from Pittsburgh! The Plum Area of Allegheny County.

Edited by notfondajane

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2) Today in Flyers History: Oct. 19, 1967

In the Flyers first-ever home game at the Spectrum, the team skated to a 1-0 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins. Doug Favell made an early third-period rebound goal by the late Bill Sutherland stand up the rest of the way. Attendance at the game was 7,812.

Earlier in the day, Sutherland was nearly denied entry into the Spectrum. An over-zealous security guard accused the 33-year-old left wing of trying to sneak into the building. The issue was straightened out, and the security guard semi-apologized but defended himself by saying that Sutherland looked "far too old" to be an active professional athlete.

Sutherland, who passed away in 2017 at age 82, holds the distinction of scoring both the first road goal and the first home goal in Flyers franchise history. In total, the longtime minor league player (whose contract was acquired by the Flyers when they purchased the AHL's Quebec Aces to be their farm team) scored 20 goals in the inaugural 1967-68 season.
 

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3) Today in Flyers History: Oct. 22, 1969

On this night in 1969, the Flyers earned a 4-3 road win over the Toronto Maple Leafs. At the time, most of the attention was focused on two Philadelphia players. Flyers center Andre Lacroix led the way offensively with a hat trick, while goalie Bernie Parent turned out a stellar 32-save performance to earn a win over one of the NHL's "Original Six" franchises.

Historically, however, the most notable moment of the game happened at 6:01 of the third period. Playing in his fourth career NHL game, Flyers rookie center Bobby Clarke set up his former Flin Flon Bombers teammate. Lew Morrison, for a goal that opened a 3-2 lead for the Flyers shortly after the Leafs had tied the game. The assist marked the first point of Clarke's NHL career. The future three-time Hart Trophy winner and Hockey Hall of Famer would go on to set Flyers franchise records with 852 assists and 1,210 points.



4) Today in Flyers History: October 22, 1974

In an earlier TIFH this week, we talked about the Flyers' 42-game home unbeaten streak (39-0 with three ties) against the Pittsburgh Penguins, which spanned nearly 15 calendar years from beginning to end; Feb. 7, 1974 to Feb. 2, 1989.

On this evening in 1974, the Flyers began another epic unbeaten streak against an NHL club; this one an overall unbeaten string spanning both home and road games. Philadelphia earned a 4-2 road win over the LA Kings, riding third period goals by Moose Dupont and Ross Lonsberry (empty net) to prevail in a hard-fought contest at the LA Forum.

Thereafter, Philadelphia would go on be undefeated by the Kings over a 32-game span (27-0 with five ties) at both the Forum and the Spectrum. Los Angeles finally broke the streak on Feb. 13, 1983.

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3) Today in Flyers History: Oct. 22, 1969

On this night in 1969, the Flyers earned a 4-3 road win over the Toronto Maple Leafs. At the time, most of the attention was focused on two Philadelphia players. Flyers center Andre Lacroix led the way offensively with a hat trick, while goalie Bernie Parent turned out a stellar 32-save performance to earn a win over one of the NHL's "Original Six" franchises.

Historically, however, the most notable moment of the game happened at 6:01 of the third period. Playing in his fourth career NHL game, Flyers rookie center Bobby Clarke set up his former Flin Flon Bombers teammate. Lew Morrison, for a goal that opened a 3-2 lead for the Flyers shortly after the Leafs had tied the game. The assist marked the first point of Clarke's NHL career. The future three-time Hart Trophy winner and Hockey Hall of Famer would go on to set Flyers franchise records with 852 assists and 1,210 points.



4) Today in Flyers History: October 22, 1974

In an earlier TIFH this week, we talked about the Flyers' 42-game home unbeaten streak (39-0 with three ties) against the Pittsburgh Penguins, which spanned nearly 15 calendar years from beginning to end; Feb. 7, 1974 to Feb. 2, 1989.

On this evening in 1974, the Flyers began another epic unbeaten streak against an NHL club; this one an overall unbeaten string spanning both home and road games. Philadelphia earned a 4-2 road win over the LA Kings, riding third period goals by Moose Dupont and Ross Lonsberry (empty net) to prevail in a hard-fought contest at the LA Forum.

Thereafter, Philadelphia would go on be undefeated by the Kings over a 32-game span (27-0 with five ties) at both the Forum and the Spectrum. Los Angeles finally broke the streak on Feb. 13, 1983.

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5) Today in Flyers History: October 23

* 1967: Flyers general manager Bud Poile purchased the contract of rugged defenseman Larry "the Rock" Zeidel from the Cleveland Barons (AHL). Zeidel had been a favorite of Poile's when the latter coached the Montreal native with the Edmonton Flyers of the Western Hockey League in the early 1950s. By now, Zeidel was 39 years old. He sent a resume to Poile and a letter asking for consideration either for a playing opportunity or an off-ice job, enclosing photos of himself both in a hockey uniform and a business suit.

Poile gave Zeidel, who last played in the NHL for Chicago in 1953-54, a chance to make the fledgling NHL team and he appeared in 57 regular season games plus all seven games of the Flyers quarterfinal series against St. Louis. Zeidel played nine additional games for coach Keith Allen in 1968-69 and then retired.

Zeidel later spent one season (1971-72) as a color commentator on Flyers broadcasts (which had a limited number of telecasts in those days, with the rest being on the radio). The late Gene Hart once told a funny story about Zeidel's short-lived broadcasting career. Three times in a single period, which saw Philly fall behind 3-1, Hart threw inquiries about plays/penalty calls over to his partner for comment.

Each time, Zeidel replied, "The fans seen it, Gene. They don't like it."

At intermission Hart gently reminded Zeidel, "Rock, the fans can't see what's happening. We're on the radio."

* 1982: Bobby Clarke appeared in his 1,000th NHL game. He is the only player in Flyers history to have played at least 1,000 regular season games as a Flyer (1,144 in all). Flyers captain Claude Giroux, with 889 regular season games played to date, is 111 games away from becoming the second to accomplish the feat.

* 2001: The Flyers named Keith Primeau as the 13th captain in team history.

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4) Today in Flyers History: October 26

* 1969: Bernie Parent battled his childhood idol (and subsequent goaltending mentor) Jacques Plante to a draw in a 0-0 tie between the Flyers and St. Louis Blues at the Spectrum. The 24-year-old Parent stopped all 25 shots he faced, while the 40-year-old Plante turned back all 26 shots fired on his net. A crowd of 13,032 attended the game, which was one of the most memorable nights of Parent's early career; almost on par with being the winning goaltender in the Flyers' first game in Montreal during the inaugural 1967-68 season.

The backstory: When Parent was growing up in the Rosemont section of Montreal, Jacques Plante's sister lived on the same street as the Parent family's home. Bernie and his friends idolized the star goaltender. They were too nervos to approach Plante directly, however, when he would periodically make a visit to his sister's home. Instead, they would hide behind the bushes to get a glimpse of the Montreal Canadiens star walking inside.

Years later, when Parent was traded by the Flyers to the Toronto Maple Leafs during the 1970-71 season, Plante became his teammate. Despite a reputation for being a loner, Plante took a liking to Parent and mentored him to go from being a good NHL goaltender to one of the all-time greats. In the late 1970s, Plante became a part-time goaltending coach for the Flyers; the first goalie coach in franchise history.

* 1975: Bill Barber racked up his second career hat trick as the Flyer pummeled the New York Rangers, 7-2, at Madison Square Garden.

* 1986: Rookie goaltender Ron Hextall ran his record to 5-1-0 as the Flyers down the Minnesota North Stars at the Spectrum, 4-1. He yielded only a Dino Ciccarelli power play goal late in the second period among the 30 shots he faced. Ilkka Sinisalo (power play), Peter Zezel, Lindsay Carson and Rick Tocchet (power play) provided the goal support

* 2002: Just 16 seconds after the opening faceoff of a 6-2 Flyers road win over the New York Islanders, Justin Williams put the Flyers ahead 1-0. Fifteen seconds later, Michal Handzus made it 2-0. The two goals in 31 seconds set a franchise record for the fastest two goals from the start of a game; the third-fastest in NHL league history.

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7) Today in Flyers History: October 30, 1969

On this night in 1969, Flyers rookie Bobby Clarke scored his first career NHL goal. It came in his seventh career game. The Flyers and Rangers skated to a 3-3 tie at the Spectrum. Hinting at his future reputation for scoring in the clutch, it was the 20-year-old rookie from Flin Flon, Manitoba, who scored with 3:24 left in the third period to forge the tie after the Flyers were unable to protect an early 2-0 lead and found themselves trailing late in the game.

Set up by top-line center Andre Lacroix, Jean-Guy Gendron and Lew Morrison scored first period goals for Philadelphia to build a 2-0 lead before the Rangers struck for the next three goals. Bernie Parent stopped 32 of 35 shots to earn the tie. Eddie Giacomin turned back 31 of 34 for the Rangers.

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On this day in 1985, star Flyers goalie Pelle Lindbergh crashed his Porsche 930 Turbo. He would die the following day at just 26 years old.

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2010: The Flyers announced the signing of Jeff Carter to an 11-year, $58 million ($5.27 million cap hit) contract extension. After the 2010-11 season and before a no-trade clause was eligible to kick in under CBA rules, the Flyers traded Carter to Columbus in the deal that brought Jakub Voracek, a 2011 first-round pick (Sean Couturier) and a 2011 third-round pick (Nick Cousins) to Philadelphia.

2013: One night after Steve Mason shut out the Ottawa Senators on the road, the Flyers continued their climb out of an early-season hole by going into Pittsburgh and claiming a 2-1 regulation win over the Penguins. Ray Emery (30 saves) was brilliant in goal, and Brayden Schenn scored his fifth and sixth goals of the season on even strength and power play goals.

 


2018: A 30-save performance by Roberto Luongo, including 16 saves in the third period, is just enough for Florida to hold off the host Flyers, 2-1. Jakub Voracek broke up Luongo's shutout bid but the Flyers could not find an equalizer after trailing 2-0.

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On this day in 1984, the Philadelphia Flyers retire #16 in honor of Flyers great Bobby Clarke.

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5) Today in Flyers History: Nov. 16

1967: The first-year expansion club continues its remarkable run against Original Six teams as the Flyers earn a 3-2 win at the Spectrum over the New York Rangers. Doug Favell leads the way with an excellent 30-save performance. Leon Rochefort, Ed Van Impe and Ed Hoekstra score for the Flyers, while Don Blackburn chips in a pair of assists.

 


1973: The Flyers play a tougher-than-expected contest with the lowly California Seals but leave Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum with a 2-1 win on a tiebreaking goal in the third period by "Cowboy" Bill Flett. Rick MacLeish's first period shorthanded goal serves as the only other Flyers' score, but Bernie Parent (23 saves on 24 shots) makes the narrow margin hold up after Flett restores the lead.

1975: The Flyers earn a 3-1 triumph over the Montreal Canadiens at the Spectrum as Wayne Stephenson (26 saves) ably substitutes for injured Bernie Parent and the Flyers pepper Hall of Fame netminder Ken Dryden with 49 shots. After Guy Lafleur gives the Habs an early lead, the Flyers bounce back for goal by Bob "the Hound" Kelly, Rick MacLeish and Gary Dornhoefer (empty net).

1976: Bernie Parent earns a 27-save shutout and makes a 1-0 lead on an early tally by Orest Kindrachuk stand up the rest of the way. Mel Bridgman adds a late empty net goal to complete a 2-0 win at the Spectrum over the Detroit Red Wings. The shutout is Parent's 41st in the NHL and 37th as a Flyer over his two stints with the team.

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On 11/15/2020 at 11:43 AM, intheslot said:

On this day in 1984, the Philadelphia Flyers retire #16 in honor of Flyers great Bobby Clarke.

125176539_1708245392680041_4274392708151373287_o.jpg

 

Now, that right there is a hockey player. Love that jersey as well. 

 

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4)Today in Flyers History: Gene Hart Inducted in HHOF (November 17, 1997)

On November 17, 1997, legendary Flyers broadcaster Gene Hart was enshrined into the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto after his selection as the recipient of the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award. At the time, he was the sixth member of the Flyers organization to be inducted into the "big" Hall.

There was much more to Gene Hart than "just" being a Hall of Fame announcer. He been a high school teacher and was a lover of opera and languages, and sometimes made on-air references to his other passions.

 


Hart also worked a wide variety of other jobs over the years, ranging from a stint as a car salesman, a repo man, a rock-and- roll disc jockey, a water clown and a dolphin-show emcee in Atlantic City. Until his father's death, Hart's family operated the famous water circus on Steel Pier; his father was a Hungarian acrobat while his mother (a former Viennese opera singer) was part of a high-dive act featuring a diving horse.

Although fondly remembered for being rotund during his broadcasting career, Hart was actually a surprisingly good athlete in his own youth. While attending Pleasantville High School in South Jersey, he was an all-state baseball player and also played football. Later, he officiated high school basketball and football. Hart fell in love with hockey early in life, following the New York Rangers and even keeping personal statistics. However, he did not work within the sport until he was hired by the NHL expansion Flyers team in 1967.

In the summers of his youth, Hart worked with his family's act on Steel Pier in a variety of capacities, including as part of a diving clown act known as Binswanger's Bathing Beauties. It was while doing the diving act that he met his wife, the former Sara Detwiler, who was earning some extra money by diving with the horses on the Pier.

 


After attending Trenton State College and earning his teaching degree, Hart served in the Army for several years. Upon his discharge, he returned to South Jersey. When the Flyers hockey team was created in 1967, he served first as a public address announcer and then as a color commentator working with play-by-play man Stu Nahan (yes, the same Stu Nahan who later became a broadcasting icon in Los Angeles and was featured in the "Rocky" movies as the television boxing commentator).

In the early days, the Flyers had to pay for their own air time and only the third period of games was broadcast. There is a quote from Hart in the memorial display at the Wells Fargo Center pressbox that he used to pray the game wouldn't be a blowout heading into the third period.

Before long, Hart took over the play-by-play duties; the role with which he became synonymous. In the meantime, for many years, he continued to teach high school in addition to broadcasting.

There were many times he took red-eye flights back from road games with barely enough time for a cat nap before he had to get ready to teach class in the morning. All the while, he never let his preparations for games slip.

As the Flyers blossomed from expansion team to Stanley Cup champion, the team (and Hart) took hold in Philadelphia's sporting conscience. Over the years, Hart gave voice to the many highs and lows the team experienced, ranging from the Broad Street Bullies years to the transitional period and the near-miss teams of the Mike Keenan era. He provided fans with solace and comfort after the deaths of Barry Ashbee and Pelle Lindbergh, and could make even a hard-fought loss seem valiant for the effort.

 


Even as he experienced health problems, including a pair of heart bypass surgeries, Hart kept right on working.

In 1988, the Flyers stopped simulcasting their broadcasts. At that point, the longtime team of Hart and Bobby Taylor was moved to radio only, while Mike "Doc" Emrick and Bill Clement handled TV duties. In 1993, Hart returned to television for two final seasons. Jim Jackson (who eventually became the team's television play-by-play man, and continues to hold the post to this day) was hired after Emrick's departure. Hart's final season as the Flyers voice was in the lockout-shortened 1994-95 season. Jackson took over on TV thereafter.

In total, Hart called more than 2,000 Flyers games. He called five Stanley Cup finals (1974, 1975, 1976, 1980, 1985, 1987), five NHL All-Star Games, and two of the series pitting NHL stars against Soviet teams. In 1997, Hart was inducted into the broadcaster's wing of the Hockey Hall of Fame (a photo of him wearing his Hall of Fame blazer at his HHOF induction sits front and center in the memorial display at the Wells Fargo Center press box).

Gene Hart battled a host of health problems in later life, and passed away on July 14, 1999. He was such a beloved local figure that a public memorial service was held and broadcast on local television for those who could not attend.

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5) Today in Flyers History: First Fighting Majors in Franchise History (Nov. 19, 1967)

he team that later came to be known as the Broad Street Bullies were not especially aggressive in their earliest years of existence. Through the first 15 games of their inaugural 1967-68 season, the Philadelphia Flyers did not engage in a single full-blown fight. There were, of course, scrums and various confrontations along the way, but nothing that escalated to the point of fighting majors.

 


That changed in game 16, as the Flyers hosted the rough-and-tumble St. Louis Blues - the team that would soon become the new expansion team's earliest archrival - at the Philadelphia Spectrum. In a harbinger of many fierce battles to come between the soon-to-be archrivals, a multi-player fight -- Pat Hannigan and Larry Zeidel on the Philadelphia side, Gordon Kannegiesser and Noel Picard for St, Louis -- erupted immediately after the final horn.

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