Saturday, December 27, 2014

Artistry in Flyers' 1,000th home win

The Flyers started their home dominance by winning their first-ever game at the Spectrum, nipping the Pittsburgh Penguins, 1-0, on a goal by Bill Sutherland and Doug Favell's shutout goaltending.

Artistry in Flyers' 1,000th home win

Sergei Bobrovsky and Claude Giroux celebrate the Flyers´ historic 1,000th home win. (Yong Kim/Staff Photographer)
Sergei Bobrovsky and Claude Giroux celebrate the Flyers' historic 1,000th home win. (Yong Kim/Staff Photographer)

    The Flyers started their home dominance by winning their first-ever game at the Spectrum, nipping the Pittsburgh Penguins, 1-0, on a goal by Bill Sutherland and Doug Favell's shutout goaltending.

   That win on Oct. 19, 1967 started a march toward 1,000 home victories.

    Victory No. 1,000 came on Tuesday, when the Flyers whipped Montreal, 5-2, before a sellout crowd at the Wells Fargo Center.

    Defenseman Chris Pronger equaled a career-high with four assists, and five players scored goals for the Flyers.

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    But, to me, the highlight was a breathtaking second-period stretch in which Jeff Carter, Claude Giroux, Nik Zherdev, Kimmo Timonen and Braydon Coburn kept the puck in the Montreal end for nearly two minutes.

    It didn't produce a goal, but it drew a standing ovation _ and it helped drain the life out of the Habs.

     "It was amazing to see them go," center Danny Briere said. "When you're sitting on the bench and you see your teammates do that, you just want to get on the ice and keep it going."

    Added Briere: "When it happens against you, it's kind of deflating. You're sitting on the bench like, 'Wow. When is it going to come out of the zone?' It's frustrating. That was a great shift and a boost for us."

    Montreal's all-star goalie, Carey Price, was also impressed with the shift.

    "Those players are pretty special," he said. "They move the puck around pretty well...and cycle it down low. You know, it was a showcase of talent, really."

      Reaching 1,000 home wins "is representative of Flyers Hockey," said Ed Snider, chairman of Comcast-Spectacor, the Flyers' parent comany. "We want our home to be a very tough place for our opponents to play."

    Said Peter Luukko, president of Comcast-Spectacor: "In addition to the many who have skated for the Flyers over the years, a lot of credit for many of these wins goes to the most intimidating fans in hockey _ our hard-core Flyers fans."

     Hyperbole? Perhaps. But on this night, you could understand the elation.

     Tuesday was the team’s 301st win at the Wells Fargo Center since its opening in 1996.  The Flyers won 696 games at the Spectrum from 1967 to 1996.  The other three wins came at Le Colisee de Quebec in Quebec City, Quebec, where the Flyers played five home games in the 1967-68 season due to roof damage at the Spectrum.

   The Flyers become the first expansion-era team (outside the Original Six) to reach the milestone.  The Canadiens were the first team in NHL history to record 1,000 wins at home when they beat the Kansas City Scouts 4-1 on March 24, 1975. 

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    Dan Carcillo had five hits and Coburn had six blocked shots, while Claude Giroux had four takeaways.....Pronger had five blocked shots....The Flyers finished January with a 10-2 record for the month.....Giroux extended is career-high points streak to seven straight games.

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   For constant Flyers updates, follow Sam Carchidi on Twitter at www.twitter.com/BroadStBull.

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Sam Carchidi Inquirer Staff Writer
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Broad Street Bull is your place for the latest updates, trade rumors, and everything connected to the Philadelphia Flyers.

Sam Carchidi Inquirer Staff Writer
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