The Philadelphia Flyers are an ice hockey team based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Flyers compete in the National Hockey League (NHL) as a member of the Metropolitan Division in the Eastern Conference. Both fans and nemeses know that the Flyers boast an all-points percentage of 57.1%. For that keeping score, that makes them the third-best team for percentage points in the NHL. The Flyers also hold the distinction of having the most appearances in conference finals among all 24 of the NHL’s expansion teams. The Flyers also excel when it comes to playoff appearances. Only the St. Louis Blues have been able to beat their record.
Flyers fans know they can count on Major League Vacations when they want to fly right to the front of the stands to catch this team in action. Our sports vacation packages let you see orange and black bring the pain on the ice. If a Philadelphia Flyers dream vacation is on your mind, get in the mood to start planning every detail by taking a look at what makes the Flyers great.
Philadelphia Flyers History
While it’s hard to imagine Philadelphia without an ice hockey team, the city actually only had a brief stint as a “hockey town” during the 1930s while the Pittsburgh Pirates relocated there amid financial struggles. Known as the Philadelphia Quakers after their relocation, the team played just one dreadful season before folding. It wasn’t until 1946 that plans were hatched for adding another NHL team in Philadelphia. However, funding issues tied to plans for a major stadium ultimately killed off plans for a team that would have been called the Montreal Maroons. You have to jump to 1964 before chatter about a team in Philadelphia pops up again.
It was during a basketball game at Boston Garden in 1964 when the vice president of the Philadelphia Eagles just happened to see Bruins fans in line to purchase game tickets. This imagery sparked an idea that would ultimately lead to the creation of a new team in Philadelphia. A contest was held for naming the team that would become the Philadelphia Flyers.
It was a rocky start for the Flyers. Hampered by the fact that restrictive NHL rules kept all of the best players within the Original Six, the team struggled to find talent to add to its roster. Following a recruiting process that brought in Gary Dornhoefer, Ed Van Impe, Bernie Parent, Joe Watson, and Lou Angotti, the team made a debut on the ice against the California Seals in October of 1967. While that game was a bust, the Flyers brought home a victory in their second on-the-road game with the St. Louis Blues. The Flyers first official home game occurred just a few days later when the team beat the Pittsburgh Penguins.
The 1970s and 1980s were full of hot streaks for the Flyers. The team’s pivot to a more aggressive mindset on the ice earned them the nickname of the “Broad Street Bullies.” Of course, fans know 1974 and 1975 as the years when the Flyers won their only two Stanley Cup championships. The 1980s ushered in a rougher period for the Flyers. Early playoff exits marred season after season. The start of the 1990s signaled the start of the “rebuilding years” for the Flyers. A bright spot came in 1995. This was the year when the Flyers were able to shake off their eight-year playoff drought while also clinching second seed in the Eastern Conference. The period from 2004 to 2014 was marked with high, lows, and mixed expectations.
The Flyers have been in an intense “makeover” period since 2014. It was considered a major wakeup call when the team failed to qualify for the playoffs for the second time in three seasons during the 2014-2015 season. Moving ahead, the 2021-2022 season has been one of the most exciting in recent memory. The Flyers breezed through the first part of the season with six wins out of 10. However, injuries sent the team spiraling into a 10-game losing streak. While a home victory over the Nashville Predators temporarily created a rosy outlook, the team ultimately finished out with one of the worst records ever seen in the league. Those who have stood with the Flyers for years know that having the odds stacked so high only makes the fire in the bellies of fans burn hotter!
The Philadelphia Flyers Arena
The Philadelphia Flyers play at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In addition to being the home of the Flyers, this multipurpose facility also serves the Philadelphia 76ers and Philadelphia Wings. Wells Fargo Center sits in the coveted spot alongside the Lincoln Financial Field, Citizens Bank Park, and Xfinity Live! inside the South Philadelphia Sports Complex. The 21,000-seat arena has notably hosted several Stanley Cup Finals over the years. In addition, it has been the scene of the 2001 NBA Finals, the 2000 Republican National Convention, the 2016 Democratic National Convention, WWE events, and countless concerts. The Wells Fargo Center is Philadelphia.
The Wells Fargo Center was originally named Spectrum II when it was completed in 1996. Built on the site of the former John F. Kennedy Stadium, the arena was constructed for a price tag of $210 million back in the day. It is currently owned by Comcast Spectacor. Changes in ownership over the years have seen the arena operate under the names of CoreStates Center (1996 to 1998), First Union Center (1998 to 2003), and Wachovia Center (2003 to 2010). The arena set a record for the highest attendance for an indoor hockey game in Pennsylvania when 20,327 watchers piled in on June 9 of 2010 to see the Flyers battle the Chicago Blackhawks during Game 6 of the 2010 Stanley Cup Finals.
The Unrelenting Fury of Flyers Fans
Led by a mascot named Gritty, Philadelphia Flyers fans are considered to be some of the toughest, fiercest hockey fans on the planet. Attendance stats show that Flyers fans have consistently shown up near capacity in the stands for decades. It’s very common for Flyers fandom to “run in the family.” The newest generation of passionate Flyers fans consists of people who have been brought up hearing legends of the “Broad Street Bullies” from their parents.
You can’t talk about flyers fans without talking about the team’s epic rivalries. Historically, their biggest adversary has been a little team called the New York Rangers. This intense feud goes all the way back to the 1970s. Known as “Broadway versus Broad Street” in the hockey world, the Flyers-Rangers rivalry has been fired up during each of the 11 times the two teams met at the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Flyers have managed to dominate New York with six out of 11 wins.
This rivalry was actually born when the two teams became division rivals during the 1974-1975 season. However, this is one rivalry that goes beyond just “the sport.” The Flyers-Rangers rivalry is really more of a rivalry between Philadelphia and New York. It’s no surprise that this geographic rivalry between the two cities is repeated in both the NFL’s Eagles–Giants and the MLB’s Mets–Phillies rivalry. Flyers fandom consists of people from the Philadelphia metro area that encompasses Delaware Valley, Southeastern Pennsylvania, parts of New Jersey, and parts of Maryland. The Rangers find their devoted fans in the New York metropolitan area. The team’s reach covers parts of Connecticut, New Jersey, and the Lower Hudson Valley.
The Philadelphia Flyers roster is full of treasured players. Of course, most fans consider Bobby Clarke to be the most important team member in Flyers history. Clarke spent his entire 15-year NHL career with the flyers. Clarke was captain of the Flyers during the team’s two Stanley Cup wins in 1973 and 1979. Clarke also holds the distinction of being the first expansion team player to ever be awarded the Hart Memorial Trophy as the NHL’s most valuable player. He has stayed on as a team executive in the years following retirement.
Plenty of other players have made history while playing with the Flyers. Rick MacLeish became the first Flyer ever to score 50 goals in a season. While acting as captain of the Flyers, Claude Giroux became just the second Flyer in history to play 100 games with the franchise. The current Flyers lineup shines brightly with help from Travis Konecny, Tony DeAngelo, Owen Tippet, Noah Gates, and James van Riemsdyk.
Don’t Let Another Season Fly by Without Seeing the Flyers
Plan your dream sports vacation with the Philadelphia Flyers with help from Major League Vacations (MLV). The premier provider of sports-themed vacation in the country, MLV brings fans right to the ice to catch history at both home and away games. Our sports vacation packages make it easy to get closer to your favorite team. Browse ice hockey sports vacation packages for the upcoming season today!