MasterGame Theater

It became known as the Saint Valentine’s Day Massacre, a Saturday afternoon on South Broad Street between the Philadelphia Flyers and New York Rangers on February 14, 2004.

Two days earlier, in the opener of the home-and-road set at Madison Square Garden, a Flyers 2-1 win came at a heavy price. Jeremy Roenick’s jaw was destroyed when he got in the way of a slap shot, and Keith Primeau was felled with a concussion. Both would be out for significant time.

But a deep veteran club under Ken Hitchcock was just a little bit deeper thanks to a pre-raided Philadelphia Phantoms, who gave up one Patrick Sharp for this contest. All the future Stanley Cup champion did was score twice and win his fight.

Notice:

  • Roenick looks totally jacked up with the full extent of his wounds.
  • The Rangers have Mark Messier, Brian Leetch, Jaromir Jagr and little else.
  • The faint strains of the Chicken Dance in the background after Tony Amonte’s goal…because the Flyers worked on a promotion with Chick-fil-A whereby anyone in attendance could get a free chicken sandwich the day after the club scores 4 goals or more in a home game, as long as they produced a ticket stub. You can’t get away with that now, but in the pre-2005 NHL, it might have happened 10 times at the most.
  • Technically, six former Flyers account for all the goals in the game.
  • All the mayhem and chaos in the third period with some familiar old-school names in the mix
  • Danny Markov wins a fight. Danny Markov wins a fight!

Holiday matinee games are always special times. It’s even more special when the Flyers outscore, outclass and outpunch their New York rivals.