Philadelphia Flyers: Ranking the 15 Best Goal Scorers in Team History
Bernie Parent was a master of saves. Dave Schultz dropped the gloves like a pro. No one played defense like Eric Desjardins.
But for the Philadelphia Flyers, the guys who can score will always reign supreme.
The franchise has seen some formidable shooters come through the city in its 45 seasons, and whether their stays were short or they become the faces of the organization, these great scorers had great impacts on the organization.
Simply listing the top scorers in team history does not tell the whole story. Instead, let’s look at the players who possessed the most impressive talent and played the biggest role in Flyers’ goal-scoring history.
Here are the 15 greatest scorers in Philadelphia history.
15. Dave Poulin
Dave Poulin may not have cracked the top 15 goal scorers in Flyers history, but his leadership and timely goals made his scoring knack that much more valuable for his team.
The video depicts Poulin scoring a rare three-on-five goal in a playoff game against the Nordiques. For fans of the Flyers in the '80s, Poulin helped the team stay exciting an relevant once the original Broad Street Bullies had broken up.
14. Mark Howe
Like Poulin, Howe does not technically make Philly's all-time list of goal scorers, but should be given special consideration considering that his primary focus was on setting up goals and playing defense.
Howe was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame this season and subsequently had his number retired. Being an offensive defenseman is no easy task, and Mark Howe deserves a little extra recognition for his place in Flyers history.
13. Rick Tocchet
Old hockey fans remember Rick Tocchet for his tough-guy attitude and boyish good looks. Young hockey fans remember him for his postgame analysis and gambling scandals. Somewhere along the lines, it is forgotten that Toc was a legitimate scoring threat in his heyday.
Rick Tocchet scored 232 goals as a Flyer, proving that his wrists were every bit as effective as his fists.
His skills are on display at the 4:09 mark.
12. Rod Brind'Amour
Rod Brind'Amour is still one of the most fondly remembered Flyers in history. He was well known for his faceoff ability and defensive prowess, but Brindy had a nose for goal scoring, no matter how broken it may have been.
Multi-tool players don't always get recognized for their most basic talents, so it is easy to forget just how much offensive ability Brindy possessed.
In the video, Brind'Amour scores two short-handed goals on the same power play, in the playoffs.
11. Mark Recchi
Mark Recchi is the 11th-best scorer in Flyers' history, and he had no shortage of important tallies. Between the 1992-93 and 1993-94 seasons, Recchi totaled 93 goals. He would never score fewer than 20 in his seven full seasons as a Flyer.
Many teams experienced the magical touch of Mark Recchi in his long career, but in Philadelphia, he will be remembered for goals like this triple-OT winner in an important Game 4 vs. the Toronto Maple Leafs.
10. Rick MacLeish
Rick MacLeish was a part of the Philadelphia Flyers' rise to glory, and he will be forever enshrined in the memories of Flyers fans who witnessed the team win its only two Stanley Cups in 1974 and 1975.
MacLeish holds the distinction of being the first Flyer to score 50 goals in a season, accomplishing the feat in his first full season with the team. En route to the 1974 Stanley Cup, MacLeish scored 13 goals and notched the cup winner in Game 6.
9. Claude Giroux
Claude Giroux is yet to hit the 100-goal mark in his career, but most Flyers fans would agree that Giroux is already one of the most important goal scorers in team history.
In less than four full seasons, Giroux has made it clear that he is the team's biggest superstar since Eric Lindros, and his playoff performances have shown that he thrives under pressure. The video depicts the opening moments of this year's clinching game against the Pittsburgh Penguins, when Giroux simply told his teammates on the bench, "Watch this."
One could say the same thing about his career in the coming years.
8. John LeClair
John LeClair's 333 goals are good for fifth in Flyers history, and had he won even a single Stanley Cup, LeClair could easily be considered one of the top Flyers scorers of all time.
As it is, LeClair was a member of many Flyers teams that seemed to fall just short of the ultimate goal, leaving the fan favorite a bit lower on this list than he would probably like.
7. Tim Kerr
How do you argue with four consecutive 50-goal seasons?
Tim Kerr was the rare case of a bona fide Philly scorer in the post-Bullies era, and if injuries hadn't derailed his career, Kerr could have become the Flyers' all-time scoring leader. From 1983-84 to 1986-87, Kerr netted 224 goals, the kind of numbers that would have gotten more recognition had a guy named Wayne Gretzky not been putting up his own ridiculous numbers.
Kerr's brief but brilliant seasons in the mid-'80s are good enough to make him the seventh-best goal scorer in Flyers history.
6. Eric Lindros
In terms of pure offensive talent, Eric Lindros should be No. 1 on this list. In terms of longevity and postseason reliability, he might be lower.
As it stands, Lindros deserves the sixth slot. His statistically dominant seasons will always be discussed followed by the hypothetical of where he would rank if he had ever been healthy enough to play a full season. His playoff highs will forever be opposed by his inability to win a cup. His role in the team's 2000 Eastern Conference finals is forever altered by the ferocious hit of Scott Stevens.
Still, to ignore Lindros is to ignore one of the most iconic figures in Flyers history. He was truly a larger-than-life figure.
5. Reggie Leach
Reggie Leach is Philadelphia's seventh-ranked goal scorer of all time, but he deserves a higher spot for his playoff prowess. Putting aside his ridiculous 61-goal performance in the 1975-76 season, Leach set an NHL record for most goals in a single postseason.
His 19 tallies en route to a loss to the Montreal Canadiens in the Stanley Cup Final are a record tied only by Edmonton's Jari Kurri. Leach remains, to this day, the only non-goaltender to win the Conn Smythe trophy while playing for the losing team.
During that playoff year, Leach also managed to score five goals in a single playoff game, an NHL record that still stands today.
4. Simon Gagne
Technically, Simon Gagne ranks ninth all-time among Flyers goal scorers, but his knack for scoring big goals in big moments makes him one of the most important shooters in Philly history.
The playoffs were Simon's specialty. Gagne sent his team to Game 7 with an overtime winner against Tampa Bay in 2004. He kept his team's season alive with another OT winner while playing Boston in 2010, and capped off an epic comeback with his go-ahead tally in Game 7 of that same series.
Still beloved by Flyers fans, Gagne deserves every ounce of praise and recognition he gets from the Philly fanbase.
3. Brian Propp
With 369 goals while wearing the orange and black, Brian Propp trails only one Flyer on the team's all-time scoring list. His offensive contributions made him the true offensive superstar of the Flyers' teams throughout the 1980s, and while he made three cup finals as a member of the Flyers (and two more with other teams), Propp never lifted the Stanley Cup.
Propp was one of the most consistent scorers the Flyers have ever seen, and while he never achieved the hardware of the Broad Street Bullies or the national attention of players like Eric Lindros, he has earned his spot as the third-greatest scorer the Flyers franchise has ever seen.
2. Bobby Clarke
Bobby Clarke's 358 goals as a Flyer are good for fourth all-time, but his outstanding leadership and unmatched tenacity make him first in the hearts of Flyers fans.
The undersized diabetic from Flin Flon, Manitoba, seemed to be a far cry from the Hockey Hall of Fame, but Clarke became a legend in the sport by winning two Stanley Cups for the Flyers and three of the team's four Hart Trophies.
Perhaps his most famous goal was the overtime winner in Game 2 of the 1974 Stanley Cup Final against the Boston Bruins, tying the series at 1-1 and eventually leading to the team's first championship.
1. Bill Barber
Only one Flyer has scored 400 goals while wearing the uniform, and that is Bill Barber. Barber's 420 goals make him the most elite of an elite group, and he and Rick MacLeish share the team's all-time playoff goal-scoring record with 53 goals each.
Barber was a key part of the teams that won Stanley Cups in 1974 and 1975, and had a career year in 1976 by tallying 50 goals and 112 points. Barber's unstoppable offense helped the Flyers to a franchise record for points, posting a 51-13-16 record. Between Barber, Bobby Clarke and Reggie Leach, the Flyers' LCB line set a record for goals scored by a line.
Barber's career mark of 420 goals is not unattainable, but there are no signs that any Flyer will be approaching the mark anytime soon. Barber is truly the top scorer in Philadelphia Flyers history.