McCrimmon perishes in Russian plane crash

Former Philadelphia Flyers defenseman and long-time NHL blueliner Brad McCrimmon has died in a plane crash in Western Russia on Wednesday morning. The plane, carrying members of the Yaroslavl Lokomotiv club of the Kontinental Hockey League on its way for a game in Minsk, Belarus, crashed just after takeoff, killing all passengers. Only one crew member survived the ordeal, and a player who survived the crash reportedly later died of his wounds in hospital. McCrimmon had signed on as the club’s head coach in May following a successful three-year stint as an assistant with the Detroit Red Wings. “I’m personally …

The Numbers Game

October 7, 1990. An otherwise unremarkable day in the history of the universe. In hockey circles, It was the Philadelphia Flyers’ 1990-91 home opener, played against the Detroit Red Wings after opening the year with two straight losses at Boston and New Jersey. In and of itself, that 7-2 victory played out in front of a sell-out crowd wasn’t notable, unless you count falling behind 2-0 early and then scoring seven straight goals. What did make it special was, it was the official retirement ceremony for Bill Barber’s #7. Honored first towards the tail end of the 1985-86 season for his 13 years …

The Lost Season

Nursing the heartbreak of a Stanley-Cup caliber Flyers season that came to a screeching halt with a stupefying early playoff exit is a rare and beautiful thing. Although the Flyers have prided themselves on not shitting the bed in the postseason after being near the top of the NHL standings, it has been known to occur every once in a blue moon. Like in the early 1980′s. Tucked in between the Year of the Streak that ended in a loss to the Islanders in the Finals and the Mike Keenan-led surprise 1985 Cup finalists, was four deeply disappointing years that saw a …

Spectrum Memories: Life is a Carnival

To celebrate my 25th year of hockey fandom, I will occasionally step into the way-back machine and write about events in the Flyers’ past. For the balance of the season, I will be dipping into the well to ruminate about some things related to my love of the Philadelphia Flyers, and in general about the fan experience as a youngster. This is the eighth in the series of Spectrum Memories. For this bi-monthly installment, I promise there’s no description of anger, violence, vulgar cheering or potentially-fatal illnesses. It’s all about the purely fun aspects of being a Flyers fan. The annual Flyers Carnival was actually …

Spectrum Memories: Sometimes They Come Back

To celebrate my 25th year of hockey fandom, I will occasionally step into the way-back machine and write about events in the Flyers’ past. For the balance of the season, I will be dipping into the well to ruminate about some things related to my love of the Philadelphia Flyers, and in general about the fan experience as a youngster. This is the sixth in the series of Spectrum Memories. Losing a family member or a friend to relocations, sickness or death is never a good experience, and the emotions are very raw and fresh when you’re a kid. Thankfully, my rather small family …

READ:12