Somebody once told me the world is gonna roll ... oh, not that All-Star? Nope! Today we’re here to talk about Flyers players that have suited up for the NHL’s All-Star exhibition game.
Here are our Top 10 Flyers All-Star moments:
10. 2015 - Voracek puts a youngster in the spotlight
Don’t you just love it when players pull all sorts of tricks out of the bag for the NHL’s breakaway challenge? One fan favorite is when a player will sometimes bring their child along, like we saw this year with Ryan Kesler. Props are also a big item, such as the time Alex Ovechkin whipped out a hat and sunglasses back in 2009 or when Ryan Johansen whipped out a jersey of The Ohio State University to win over the fans. Well, Jake Voracek had a plan of his own and wanted to make a young kids day. That young kid just so happened to be Calgary Flames winger and South Jersey’s own Johnny Gaudreau. Voracek started his attempt like any other but he stopped at the bottom of the hashmarks. He then threw his gloves over and raced to the players bench and picked up 5’9’ winger, holding him throughout the entire attempt. St. Louis goalie Brian Elliott even played along, whiffing on a shot to his five hole. Claude Giroux could be seen chuckling on the bench next to Phil Kessel and Nick Foligno, so what better of a moment to kick off our Top 10 list!
9. 1997 - LeClair scores two in San Jose
1997 was a season of such promise for the orange and black. The team ended up going very far in the playoffs, but unfortunately the 1997 Stanley Cup Finals were cancelled. It was such a shame because the team could have put up a good battle against the Detroit Red Wings, there was no way that less than six games would have been played. Oh well, maybe we’ll get an explanation some day.
The Legion of Doom line, comprised of John LeClair, Eric Lindros and Mikael Renberg, was in full swing, as both LeClair and Lindros earned All-Star nods during their 1996-97 campaign. While former Flyer Mark Recchi stole the show scoring a hat trick, LeClair struck twice, while Peter Bondra assisted on both goals. Can we also take a moment to dream about how fun a line of LeClair-Lindros-Bondra would have been to watch? Oh boy.
8. 1981 - Peeters backstops the Campbell Conference to its first win
Pete Peeters was the new kid on the block in Philadelphia. After the great Bernie Parent was forced into early retirement due to a freak eye injury, Peeters was named the new starting goaltender. The 1979-80 Flyers would go on to set a North American sports record, as the Flyers went 35 straight games without a loss. Peeters finished the season with an astonishing 29–5–5 record.
As for the All-Star game ... The NHL re-aligned its conferences before the 1974-75 season, creating the Campbell Conference and Wales Conference. The Wales Conference won every All-Star game from 1975-1980. After North Stars goalie Don Beaupre did not allow a goal through 1 1⁄2 periods of play, Peeters was put in as relief. Pete allowed one goal as the Campbell Conference won their first All-Star game by a score of 4-1.
7. 2011 - Briere strikes twice in Raleigh
2011 marked the first year the NHL rolled out the goofy and not-missed fantasy draft [Ed. note: Aw, I liked the fantasy draft.]. Eric Staal and Nicklas Lidstrom were named captains and had each rotated picks, assembling their respective teams. Danny Briere was by chosen team Lidstrom, and fellow teammate Claude Giroux was selected by Team Staal. Briere would score two goals, one at the end of the second period and one at the start of the third. Team Lidstrom would come out on top, winning by a ‘close’ score of 11-10.
6. 1993 - Crazy 8, Mark Recchi, puts up five points
Before the Legion of Doom came around, Mark Recchi (back on his first stint with the Flyers), Lindros and Brent Fedyk were known as the Crazy 8’s line. Ironically enough, the All-Star game would take place in Montreal, the place Recchi would call home for five seasons later in his career. Mark picked up a second period goal and added four assists on goals from Pierre Turgeon, Rick Tocchet, Kevin Stevens and Brad Marsh, helping the Wales conference pick up a 16-6 win.
5. 2012 - Hartnell Down!
Scott Hartnell was a fan favorite in Philadelphia, as he never failed to bring joy to the fans with his antics. Getting into arguments with Hulk Hogan or throwing his glove at Ryan Malone on a breakaway, Hartsy was a joy to watch. Scott also created a charity known as ‘#HartnellDown’ (you can read more about them here). Every time Scott fell down, he made a donation of $1,000 to charity. This also produced memorable moments where fellow teammate Claude Giroux attempted to pull Hartnell down throughout the 2012 All-Star game. We miss ya Scott.
Suck it, Phaneuf!
4. 1980 - The Riverton Rifle takes home the MVP
Reggie Leach was a member of the famous LCB line, and while both of his line mates are in the Hockey Hall of Fame. Reggie has one accomplishment they do not have ... an All-Star game MVP award. After scoring a goal of his own, and assisting on a goal by Brian Propp, Leach was named the MVP of the 32nd All-Star classic.
3. 1978 - Flyers send eight players to the All-Star game
Tom Bladon, Bobby Clarke, Gary Dornhoefer, Rick MacLeish, Bernie Parent, Fred Shero, Jim Watson, Joe Watson. Those are all the names of your Flyers All-Stars for the 31st All-Star game. The mid-70’s were no doubt the best days for the Flyers; two Cup wins, and Hall of Famers in Barber, Clarke and Parent. Clarke and Parent returned to the All-Star lineup in 1973 after a one-year absence. MacLeish also scored the first goal by a Flyer at the All-Star game during the second period, with Denis Potvin and Bob Nystrom recording the helpers. Bernie Parent would allow one goal in 30 minutes of playing time, however the Campbell Conference lost in a close 4-3 game.
2. 2015 - Voracek scores three
And here Jakub Voracek makes his second appearance on our list. Jake was in the midst of a breakout 2014-15 season which earned him a very nice payday. 2015 was also his first appearance in the All-Star game, in the city that drafted him, Columbus. As you likely know, the Blue Jackets traded away a future star in Voracek and two draft picks for about 30 games of Jeff Carter until Jeff kicked and screamed his way out of Columbus, being shipped off to Los Angeles.
However, Jake had something to prove to the city that gave up on him so quickly, scoring three goals and adding three assists during Team Toews’ 17-12 beating of Team Foligno.
1. 2004 - Roenick goes 4 for 4
Jeremy Roenick had some very memorable on ice antics. JR had a personality like no other, and that continues to this day with his work as a member of the NBC broadcast crew. At the time, only three players had went 4 for 4 in the NHL’s accuracy shooting challenge since it was introduced during the 1990 season. Roenick went with a very unconventional approach, shooting competently off his back leg, and it worked. 2004 would be the last time a player went 4 for 4 in the accuracy shooting. In 2011, the NHL would tweak the rules, adding in a time limit so shooters had to get the puck off quickly.