Throwback Thursday Top 10: Bruins-Flyers moments
Opening night is six days away, and the slate features two marquee matchups. The defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings will cap off the night with their first matchup against the San Jose Sharks since their triumphant 3-0 series comeback against their California foes.
Beforehand, the Boston Bruins will kick things off with the Philadelphia Flyers. So, even though it’s still a little early for the hype for this year’s first matchup, we figured that today’s Throwback Thursday Top 10 should feature the best moments of the Bruins-Flyers rivalry. Let’s get to the list.
10. Randy Jones’ cheap shot on Bergeron
Patrice Bergeron was developing into a stellar, all-around player that Bruins fans admire to this day. That development, however, took an unexpected halt when he suffered a major concussion after a hit by former Flyers defenseman Randy Jones.
Very little justice was given to Jones, who only served a two-game suspension for his season ending hit to Bergeron. The Quebec born center, however, returned in the 2008-09 season, and slowly but surely regained his form. Bergeron is coming off his second Selke Trophy, while Jones hasn’t skated in an NHL game since March 26, 2012.
9. Jack Edwards’ evil laugh
Ironically enough, Jones was on the receiving end of our next moment nearly a year later. After Milan Lucic leveled him, Jack Edwards took note and, well, you know the rest of the story.
8. Bruins finally get past Flyers in ’77
After the Flyers ended their season in 1974 (more on that later in the list) and 1976, the Big Bad Bruins were looking to get a monkey off their back. They finally did so in 1977 by sweeping the Flyers en route to the Stanley Cup Final where they lost to another archrival of theirs, the Montreal Canadiens.
7. Dave Schultz vs. Terry O’Reilly
During the 70’s, Schultz and O’Reilly were the two prominent and most well-known enforcers. Combined, the two dropped the gloves a total of 278 times (regular season). They protected their teammates, and when they had to, they exchanged a few jabs at each other.
O’Reilly and Schultz squared off in five fights during their career, including this bout at the historic Boston Garden on January 15, 1976.
6. Reggie Leach’s five goals
In the 1976 Stanley Cup Playoffs, the Flyers were aiming to capture their third straight Stanley Cup. A team that was standing in their path were the Big Bad Bruins, but once again the Broad Street Bullies had their way, particularly in Game 5.
Despite rumors of having a few too many adult beverages the night before, Philly’s leading scorer and ex-Bruin Reggie Leach got the best of the Black and Gold as he lit the lamp five times. Leach is one of only five players to score five goals in a Stanley Cup Playoff game and his 19 goals during the ’76 postseason are tied with Jari Kurri for the most in one playoff.
5. Sweet revenge
After the 2010 collapse (more on that on the next two entries), the Black and Gold were looking to put the past behind them the following year in the Eastern Conference semifinals. They did just that, and appropriately enough, they finished off the Flyers in four and swept some old cobwebs in the process.
4. Marc Savard returns in heroic fashion
The 2010 postseason wasn’t all that bad for the Bruins. Following a mediocre 2009-10 regular season, they pulled off an upset over the Buffalo Sabres in the first round.
The very next round, the Bruins and Flyers renewed their playoff rivalry. Marc Savard, who as we all know suffered a major concussion from the Matt Cooke cheapshot, returned to the Bruins’ lineup for the teams first postseason matchup since 1978.
Savard wasn’t expected to play a major role in his first game back. But in overtime, Savard took a whack at a rolling puck finding its way in the back of the net. It was truly an ending that Hollywood would not have approved if they were approached with this script.
3. Flyers come back from 3-0 deficit(s)
Ahead 3-0 in the series, the Bruins needed just one win to advance to their first conference finals appearance since 1992. Even with the series lead – and a 3-0 lead in Game 7 – the Black and Gold couldn’t get the job done. Simon Gagne‘s return to the lineup sparked the Flyers as they pulled off the triumphant comeback.
2. Flyers win the 1974 Stanley Cup
As a team on the rise in the 1970’s, the Broad Street Bullies were looking to enter their name to the NHL elite. A matchup with the Big Bad Bruins was a perfect opportunity for them to do so.
The Flyers had everything going for them after Bobby Clarke’s overtime winner in Game 2. They won Games 3 and 4, but couldn’t finish off the job in Game 5. Alas, Game 6 where Kate Smith made an appearance at The Specturm to sing God Bless America. The team, and the crowd, fed off that and the Flyers became the first team of the expansion era (from the 60’s) to taste Lord’s Stanley Cup.
1. Winter Classic 2010
The scenery was what a Bostonian could only dream of.
After their two first versions were wildly successful at Buffalo’s Ralph Wilson Stadium and historic Wrigley Field in Chicago, respectively, the 2010 version of the Winter Classic made its way to another iconic venue: Fenway Park.
The ballpark on Yawkey Way hosted several Winter Classic firsts, including the event’s first fight. But the one that stands out was the result. Marco Sturm‘s game-winner in overtime gave the Bruins a 2-1 win over their rivals.
The Bruins are the first, and only, hockey team to come out victorious as the host team in the New Year’s Day event.