Few names or more synonymous with the Philadelphia Flyers more than Bobby Clarke —perhaps Bernie Parent or Ed Snider, but that’s about it.
While Clarke enjoyed tremendous success during a Hall of Fame career with the Flyers as a player —including back-to-back Stanley Cups in 1974 and 1975— his second career with the club as general manager proved quite fruitful for both parties as well.
Back on June 15th of 1994 Clarke returned to the Flyers as general manager by way of a trade with Florida in which the Panthers received a 1994 second-round pick in exchange for Clarke’s services.
The reunion of Clarke and the Flyers came after short, but successful, stints with the Minnesota North Stars (who reached the Stanley Cup Final under Clarke in 1991) and Panthers (who set an expansion record for points and wins in 1993-94 under Clarke’s guidance) following his firing in Philadelphia after the 1989-90 season.
His first fun as Flyers general manager had just about everything but an elusive third Stanley Cup for the franchise. After retiring in 1984, Clarke led the Flyers to five playoff berths and two finals appearances (though they’d lose to the Oilers in both).
The second run was arguably just as impressive with the Flyers making the playoffs 11-straight seasons to start Clarke’s second stint. Though the postseason trips were impressive and the Flyers were consistently a contender, they advanced to just one Stanley Cup Final (losing to Detroit in four games) and suffering through five first-round exits. Clarke was also largely criticized for numerous coaching changes during his second stint as general manager, going through six coaches before stepping away from the role during the disaster that was the 2006-07 campaign.
Even though Clarke failed to deliver the Flyers their desperately wanted third Stanley Cup, trading a second-round pick for Clarke on this date in 1994 ended up being a steal for the franchise.
Also on June 15th in franchise history...it’s the one-year anniversary of Andrew MacDonald being put on waivers (for purpose of contract buyout)...
*Stick taps to hockeyreference.com, nhl.com, and Flyers.nhl.com for help with this trip down memory lane*