An almost-daily column that takes a look back at how the Philadelphia Flyers have fared on this day, recalling some of the more memorable moments, achievements, and events that shaped the organization throughout the club’s storied history
Heading into tonight's road opener against the Florida Panthers, the Flyers hold an 8-5-1-1 all-time record in 15 games played on October 10. They were winners in three of their first four and two of their last three contests that took place on this date.
1970 – Gary Dornhoefer and Bobby Clarke notched first period power play goals and Doug Favell stopped 31 of 32 shots as the Flyers opened up their fourth NHL season with a 2-1 victory over "Gump" Worsley and the Minnesota North Stars at the Spectrum.
Bob "The Hound" Kelly assisted on both Philadelphia man advantage tallies to garner Star of the Game honors. Starting his second season in the league, it was the first-ever game-winning goal of Clarke’s career.
1976 – Ross Lonsberry scored the game’s only goal and Bernie Parent stopped all 18 shots he faced to post the 35th regular season shutout of his career as the Flyers blanked the Los Angeles Kings 1-0 in a fight-filled affair at the Spectrum.
Lonsberry’s goal came in a second period dominated by the Orange-and-Black, one in which they outshot Los Angeles by a 13-1 count.
The game featured a late-first period brawl in which a very familiar face took center stage, just in a different situation. Dave "The Hammer" Schultz, who wreaked havoc on the league during his time with Philadelphia but had been traded to the Kings two weeks earlier, fought Paul Holmgren, who was appearing in just his fourth NHL contest in his first full season in the league.
For their parts the two were both ejected from the game, as was Kings coach Bob Pulford, who grabbed one of the on-ice officials by the shirt. There were 12 fighting majors and eight game misconducts doled out in all during the first two periods.
1982 – Darryl Sittler scored twice and Brian Propp added a goal and two assists as the Flyers defeated the Washington Capitals 6-4 at the Spectrum.
Trailing 2-1 at the start of the second period, Philadelphia got a trio of early goals from Ron Flockhart, Sittler, and Tim Kerr within the span of 1:37 to take charge of the contest.
Rick St. Croix made 29 saves to run his season record to a perfect 3-0-0.
1987 – Ilkka Sinisalo and Murray Craven each scored a pair of goals and Mark Laforest made 21 saves to pick up his first win with the club as the visiting Flyers registered a 5-4 triumph over the Minnesota North Stars.
With the game knotted at 3-3 after two periods of play, Craven and Sinisalo both notched their second tallies of the night to provide the margin of difference. Sinisalo’s became the eventual game-winner when Brian Bellows beat Laforest on the power play with one second remaining to bring Minnesota to within one goal and set the final score.
1992 – Third period goals by Greg Paslawski, Kevin Dineen, and Keith Acton erased a 2-1 deficit, while Dominic Roussel stopped 32 of 34 shots as the Flyers beat the Washington Capitals 4-2 at the Cap Center in Landover, Maryland.
After scoring goals in both of his first two games, rookie Eric Lindros posted his first NHL assist on Mark Recchi’s second period tally.
1996 – Rod Brind’Amour beat Byron Dafoe just 33 seconds into overtime to record his 500th NHL point and lift the Flyers to a 5-4 win over the Los Angeles Kings at the CoreStates Center, sending the home fans away happy after Philadelphia had blown a three-goal third period lead.
Goals by Chris Therien, Karl Dykhuis, Dainius Zubrus, and Eric Desjardins staked Philadelphia to a 4-1 lead midway through the third, but goals by Doug Zmolek, Brent Grieve, and Ray Ferraro sent the game to the extra session.
Zubrus’ tally was his second in just his third NHL game, while L.A.’s first goal was provided by now-Philly assistant coach Ian Laperriere.
Garth Snow made 21 saves to record his first victory of the year.
2002 – John LeClair scored a pair of goals to give Philadelphia a 2-0 lead with 8:48 left in regulation, but Georges Laraque and Anson Carter answered with late third period tallies to lift the Edmonton Oilers to a 2-2 deadlock at the First Union Center in the 2002/03 season opener.
Roman Cechmanek stopped 26 of 28 Oilers’ shots, including three in the scoreless overtime period, while Tommy Salo finished the night with 25 saves.
There were a couple of firsts in this one – it was Ken Hitchcock’s debut as Philadelphia’s head coach, and Flyers’ rookie defender Dennis Seidenberg assisted on LeClair’s second goal to notch his first career NHL point.
2006– Peter Forsberg scored a goal and assisted on two others while Antero Niittymaki made 25 saves to lead the Flyers to a 4-2 win over the New York Rangers at the Wachovia Center.
Mike Knuble, Geoff Sanderson, and Simon Gagne also lit the lamp for the home squad.
It was the club’s first win following a pair of losses (0-1-1) in what would turn out to be the worst year in franchise history, and would prove to be Ken Hitchcock’s final triumph as Philadelphia’s head coach. ‘Hitch’ would lose his job less than two weeks later after a 9-1 loss to the Buffalo Sabres left the team with a 1-6-1 record.
2007 – Mike Richards posted two goals and a pair of assists, the Flyers received goals from seven different skaters, and Martin Biron stopped 25 of 27 shots in a successful conclusion to a season-opening west coast swing with an 8-2 thumping of the Vancouver Canucks at GM Place.
With the contest scoreless midway through the opening period, the visitors got goals from Jeff Carter and R.J. Umberger just 13 seconds apart to take control. Simon Gagne and Danny Briere added tallies before the end of the frame to give the Flyers a 4-1 lead at the first intermission, chasing Vancouver starter Roberto Luongo in favor of Curtis Sanford.
Joffrey Lupul, Mike Knuble and Richards each struck in the middle stanza to make it 7-2, before Richards closed out the scoring with a shorthanded marker late in the third.
2009 – Teemu Selanne scored two late third period goals -- including the game-tying goal with 16 seconds remaining in regulation -- then notched the lone goal in the shootout to lead the Anaheim Ducks to a 3-2 win over the Flyers at the Wachovia Center.
Power play markers from Mike Richards and Chris Pronger – the defender’s first goal in a Flyers’ uniform after being acquired from Anaheim the previous summer – provided Ray Emery with a 2-0 lead heading into the final period before Selanne’s late-game heroics.
Jonas Hiller made 33 saves through overtime, then stopped Daniel Briere, Mike Richards, and Simon Gagne in succession in the shootout. Emery finished with 31 stops for Philly.
October 10 Flyers Trade
One of the more shocking moves in team history occurred on this day in 1985, when Darryl Sittler – fully expecting to be named the successor to the recently-retired Bobby Clarke as team captain – was instead traded to the Detroit Red Wings in exchange for young forward Murray Craven and winger Joe Paterson.
October 10 Flyers Birthdays
Ron Flockhart 1960 – The Smithers, British Columbia-native inspired the moniker "Flocky Hockey" with his speed and sometimes dazzling rushes with the puck, and enjoyed success centering Brian Propp and Ray Allison on the club’s ‘Hi-Speed Line’. Flockhart was with Philadelphia for parts of four seasons, in which he recorded 65 goals, 145 points, and 108 PIMs in 167 regular season games. His best year came during the 1981/82 campaign, when he hit for a career-high 33 goals, 72 points, and 10 power play tallies.
Chris Pronger 1974 – The hulking 6’ 6", 220-pound defender with a nasty disposition was acquired during the 2009 draft weekend in exchange for Joffrey Lupul, Luca Sbisa, and several draft choices, and made an immediate impact on the Philadelphia blue line. He appeared in all 82 games his first season as a Flyer, then was a key factor in leading the team to the 2010 Stanley Cup Final. Unfortunately for all involved, his body began breaking down the following summer. Over the next two seasons, Pronger would see action in just 63 total games over the next two seasons due to various injuries before appearing in his final game on November 19, 2011 in Winnipeg. The Hall-of-Famer remained on Philadelphia’s LTIR for years before his contract was dealt to the Arizona Coyotes along with Nicklas Grossmann in exchange for Sam Gagner at the 2015 draft weekend.