There have been literally thousands of players that have suited up for the Philadelphia Flyers since their inception in 1967. There are, of course, the big names fans will never forget. Players like Clarke, Lindros, Kerr, and Primeau will forever be etched in the minds of Flyers fans all over the globe. But what about the guys that aren’t legends of the franchise? What about the obscure players who have worn the flying P on their chest that have slipped into the abyss of our minds and made an afterthought? That’s where I come in. For no other reason other than I have too much time on my hands I decided to reach DEEP into the memory bank and recall those obscure Flyers who make you go “I remember him!”
This list is completely authentic. Before anyone wants to accuse me of Googling these guys I can assure you I did not. I am a wealth of useless knowledge and players that others may have forgotten or simply don’t care about. Most likely, the younger fans reading this will have never heard of a lot of these guys, and that’s ok. Use this article as a reason to go back and research lost names in the Flyers record books. The Flyers franchise’s history is long and their list of all time players is even longer. So without further adieu, here’s the players you may have forgotten.
This name is probably one that a lot of people remember. The left handed blue liner played with the orange and black from 1997-2002. His scoring prowess was second to none as he tallied a whopping seven goals in his five-year Flyers career. Richardson was a tough, rugged player that fit the bill of the player the Flyers were looking for in the late 90s. Luke for sure wasn’t the most dashing looking man to wear a Flyers crest, but luckily for him he wasn’t entering any beauty contests. Built like a house and always ready to drop the gloves, Richardson was one tough hombre and just the type of player Philadelphia could fall in love with.
Here’s old number 22 tuning up scumbag and Philadelphia nemesis Matthew Barnaby in 2002.
Armed with two bolder like fists and a face only a mother could love, Tom Sestito was everything Flyers fans absolutely go nuts for in a fourth line bender. If Richardson was built like a house then Sestito was built like a mountain. He literally was only good for dropping the gloves during his 21 total games between 2011 and 2013. ESPN’s Keith Olbermann once accurately referred to Sestito as a “boxing hobo on skates” and by just youtubing this bruiser its easy to see why. His highlight game as a Flyer came on February 5, 2013 when he tallied two goals against the Lighting to lift the Flyers to a 2-1 win. These were the only two goals he ever scored as a Flyer. Hats off to you, Tommy!
Alright folks we are officially descending down the well of my brain into the darkness. Who could possible forget Jiri Dopita?! Probably a lot of you. Dopita had a two year stint with the Flyers from 2001-2003 and Philadelphia was the only NHL city he ever played in. What an honor for us! The only reason anyone would remember Dopita was for one night in January of 2002. It was the eighth day of that month and Dopita must have eaten his Wheaties in the morning because that night he netted four straight goals in a 6-2 throttling of the Atlanta Thrashers. This game was truly the only memorable one of Dopita’s NHL career, but what a memory it is.
And here is the video showing all four goals scored by Dopita on that legendary night.
You may remember him as the guy man who’s name was constantly mispronounced like the best goalie the Flyers have ever had. His name is actually pronounced like the people who raised you, not like the guy who won back-to-back cups in the 70s. Parent laced ’em up for the Flyers from 2006-2010 and recorded only two goals for the squad from the blue line. I kind of remember the team trying to build him up as a player with some promise and he may have even showed a bit from time to time. Ultimately Parent’s career with the Flyers was as lack luster as his stat sheet.
Radovan Somik was another one of these guys who played many years over seas that the Flyers tried to bring over and get ahead of the competition. Much like other players that fit that description like the aforementioned Jiri Dopita and more recently, Evgeni Medvedev, Somik was never anything more than a role player for the Flyers. In 113 games he recorded 32 points. After that he was never heard from again.
I’m gonna be honest with you guys here, I don’t really remember much about ol Branko here. As I was in deep thought about these old forgotten players somehow his name somehow popped into my head. The little bit I do remember is him having some speed and using his body like a battering ram at times. Typical guy the Flyers loved to have on their team in the day. Of course in the early 2000’s his style was pretty much how the entire league played, which is what endeared the sport to the city in the first place. He played two seasons for the Flyers in 03-04 and then again after the lockout in 05-06.
Bruno St. Jacques
Folks, we are so deep in the well right now we can’t even see the light above. Again, I must come at you all with honesty. I loved St. Jacques as a kid because I thought his name was the absolute coolest. He in no way shape or form ever did anything good as a Flyer. Like at all. In just 13 games between 2001 and 2003 he never scored a single goal. Never even had an assist. Furthermore, he didn’t score a goal in 30 games with the Phantoms either, though he did manage seven assists. Ah to be young again when production didn’t matter and the way into a young boy’s heart and memory bank was just having a really cool name. I’ll likely always remember Bruno St. Jacques not because he was a great Flyer but because nine year old me thought he was the next big thing.
Well, there are the names you’ve either heard for the first time or haven’t heard in years. If some of the older fans cringed during most their reading I apologize. I cant control the names that come to my head, all I can do is reminisce. A few honorable mentions–or dishonorable mentions, depending on how you look at it–are: Marcus Ragnarsson, Nikolai Zherdev, Petr Nedved, and Hall of Famer Adam Oates. This was one of the most fun articles I’ve had the pleasure to write and I hope all of you enjoyed this trip down memory lane as much as I did.