1. Trent Klatt’s Breathe Rite
Trent Klatt was without a doubt the best Flyer of all time. Had he not been traded to Vancouver for a conditional pick two games into the 1998-99 season he surely would have topped all of Bobby Clarke’s totals. One category that Clarke could never hope to catch Klatt in was total number of horse faces on your shoulders – 1. And when Klatt-a-tat-tat threw those little useless stickers on his face to stretch out his nostrils it looked like Seabiscuit was bearing down on you on the forecheck. You know how many defensemen in the league wanted Seabiscuit bearing down on them in the 90′s? Exactly none.
2. Derek Settlemyre
Forget Bear Grylls. If there’s one person we’re taking into the woods with us to live off of skate laces and towels for 2 years it’s Settlemyre. Nothing the guy does on camera gets by us – the high fives, the low fives, the standing on the bench. As a matter of fact, nothing the guy does anywhere gets past us – the turning with out putting on his turn signal, the pulling into his garage, the walking upstairs, the getting into the shower. We were so proud for him when he made the Olympic team as the US’s equipment Manager that we almost felt as if we were going to Vancouver too. (Because we were, I am Derek Settlemyre.)
3. I’m a contrarian
I’m obviously a Flyers fan because as a child I was forced to be, but in the end I find it’s a good fit anyways. This might be a little of the chicken and the egg, but I love telling people that they’re stupid punks, and there simply isn’t an easier vehicle to get that conversation going then telling other NHL fans that you’re a Flyers fan. From Atlanta to Montreal, the Indianapolis Racers to the Winnipeg Jets II, everyone jumps on you when admit to rocking the orange and black. Which takes a load of my conscience when I Stone Cold Stun a stranger.
4. The spectacular drunken wonder-show that is Flyers playoff hockey
The buzz in the air and in your brain. The noise. The chills. The ice cold beer giving you enough liquid courage you feel like part of the team. By the time Kate Smith is blasting over the speakers, you feel like you could sprint a marathon, and with the tense, sudden death atmosphere, you’re about to.
5. No other Philly team has consistently shown such a strong desire to win as the Flyers
It starts at the top, with Ed Snider, who loves him some hockey. Being a fan of a club that tries to win every year is very rewarding. Playoffs are a constant, as is the pedigree of players that don the Orange & Black. It’s a small privilege that I think Flyers fans appreciate immensely. Before the Phils cashed in on Thome, and before the Eagles would even consider T.O., there was the Flyers. They constantly make smart hockey moves(Patrick Sharp and Mike Ricci aside) to position the team as a great destination for players, as well as a very profitable product that shows their commitment to their fans. The best reciprocal relationship I know.
The Five Reasons to Love the Flyers feature was inspired by the Five Reasons I Love Hockey feature on the Puck Daddy blog. This column should run biweekly on Thursdays. If you are a diehard Flyers fan and would like to submit your list of reasons to love the Flyers, contact us.