Flyers Alumni featured in the “Throwback Thursday” promotion

In difficult times, you have to consider the little things. Things that remind us all of better days. Currently, the Philadelphia Flyers are at rock bottom. The light at the end of the tunnel is dim at best.

The Flyers’ social media team is to be commended. The NHL’s worst-kept secret concerns the state of hockey in Philadelphia. Every moment includes fans calling for a change in the front office. Fans are justified, but if there’s a cult in the fanbase that wants a night of endless misery, honoring the glory days helps. Enter the concept of “Throwback Thursday” during the 2022-2023 season.

Every decade in Philadelphia’s hockey history will be honored during Throwback Thursday games.

“The Philadelphia Flyers have an incredibly proud and storied history, and these Throwback Thursday games are a great way to celebrate that history and connect today’s players and fans with different eras of the Flyers’ past.”

Brad Marsh; 08/09/2022

Flyers Alumni preparation and representation is an improvement over last season. Last season, the Flyers Alumni Game didn’t get much promotion; heavily criticized by Chris Therien via ‘Snow the Goalie’.

  • October 27, 2022: vs. Florida Panthers (1960s/1970s)
  • December 1, 2022: against the Tampa Bay Lightning (the 1980s)
  • Jan. 5, 2023: vs. Arizona Coyotes (1990s)
  • January 19, 2023: against the Chicago Blackhawks (the 2000s)
  • Feb. 9, 2023: vs. Edmonton Oilers (2010s)
  • March 23, 2023: vs. Minnesota Wild (all decades)

Above is the “Throwback Thursday” schedule with the decades celebrated in each game. Below are a handful of names over the decades that have stood out in Flyers history, sorted by decade affected.

The 1960s and 1970s

Of course, the Philadelphia Flyers entered the NHL as an expansion team in 1967. The 1960s would combine with the 1970s as the Flyers faced the Florida Panthers before celebrating those two decades with all the others against the Minnesota Wild later. The best identified with the 1960s were players such as Gary Dornhoefer, Joe Watson and Ed Van Impe.

Dornhoefer is immortalized via a statue outside of Xfinity Live in Philadelphia, where the Spectrum was being held. Watson won two Stanley Cups and scored a shorthanded goal against the Red Army. Van Impe has struck fear in Russia, sparking a protest after leveling Valeri Kharlamov.

The franchise’s history began in the 1960s, but the impression of these players lasted well into the 1970s.

Joining the players above are vital memorabilia from the “Broadstreet Bullies” era, such as Bob Kelly, Reggie Leach, Rick MacLeish, Bill Barber, Bernie Parent and Bobby Clarke.

Kelly scored the Stanley Cup-winning goal in 1975 against the Buffalo Sabres. Leach was the leading scorer on a line with Barber and Clarke; and the only 60-goal scorer in franchise history. MacLeish ranks in the top ten in goals, assists, points and games played in team history; the same goes for Barber and Clarke, but in the top five. Parent lives on in NHL history as one of the best goaltenders between a series of posts, with two Stanley Cups.

The 1980s

On December 1, 2022, the Philadelphia Flyers host the Tampa Bay Lightning. Tonight’s pick decade is the 1980s. Some players most identified with the 1980s include Brian Propp, Mark Howe, Brad Marsh, Dave Poulin and Rick Tocchet.

Propp, an astute NHL scorer who broke the 1,000-point milestone, spent the entire decade with the Flyers. Howe was one of the NHL’s top defensemen in the 1980s. Poulin was the NHL’s top two-way forward, winning the Frank J. Selke Trophy in 1986-87. Marsh was a steady defender for Philadelphia, opting to go helmetless as an exception to the rule. Tocchet is a former player that this current fan base still adores, especially when hunting for coaches before John Tortorella accepted the offer.

The 1990s

On January 5, 2023, the Arizona Coyotes visit the Wells Fargo Center. The 1990s will be in the spotlight during this “Thursday of return”. Rod Brind’Amour, Eric Lindros, John LeClair, Eric Desjardins and Ron Hextall bring back the nostalgia.

Brind’Amour has a career that spans twenty years, including two Frank J. Selke trophies, but arguably his best hockey (601 points in 633 games) came while he was with Orange et Noir. Lindros is synonymous with number 88 in Philadelphia and a member of the NHL Hall of Fame. LeClair was a five-time All-Star with the Flyers. Desjardins was twice star by the end of the decade. Hextall, as a player, contributed mightily to two separate stints in Philadelphia, blending between the 1980s and 1990s.

The 2000s

On January 19, 2023, the Chicago Blackhawks come to town. Remember, the decade of the 2000s ended with a Stanley Cup Finals loss to the Blackhawks. Forwards ruled the 2000s with Simon Gagne, Jeff Carter, Mike Richards, Mark Recchi and Keith Primeau.

Gagne ushered in a rapid era of Philadelphia Flyers hockey, earning NHL rookie honors in late 2000, and hasn’t let up. Gagne, along with Richards and Carter, were in the game for the 2010 playoffs that ended in a Stanley Cup Finals loss to the Blackhawks. Recchi is a member of the NHL Hall of Fame and returned for his second stint with the Flyers between 1998 and 2004. Primeau finished his career in Philadelphia electric in the 2000-2001 season, scoring at a pace greater than one point per game.

The 2010s

The exclusive night of the past decade takes place on February 9, 2023 against the Edmonton Oilers. Sean Couturier could be honored the very night he is in the lineup. Others to celebrate are Claude Giroux, Jakub Voracek, Wayne Simmonds and Scott Hartnell.

Couturier won the Frank J. Selke Trophy for the 2019-20 season. Giroux obtained his captaincy during the 2012-2013 season. Voracek had an all-star season with the Philadelphia Flyers. Simmonds was the heart of the Flyers roster and won the Mark Messier Leadership Award during the 2018-19 season. Hartnell became a fan favorite for his hard play from 2007 to 2014, especially in postseason games against rival Pittsburgh Penguins.

(Photo by Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire)

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