Philadelphia Flyers: Ranking the 10 Best Goal Scorers in Team History

Jason SapunkaCorrespondent IIOctober 11, 2011

Philadelphia Flyers: Ranking the 10 Best Goal Scorers in Team History

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    When Jaromir Jagr assisted on the first Philadelphia Flyers goal of the 2011-2012 NHL season, he became just the ninth player in NHL history to total 1600 career points.

    Jagr is the active leader in total career points, 646 of which were goals. He is the active leader in that category as well (Teemu Selanne is second in both).

    Though Jagr is undoubtedly the most accomplished scorer in the entire NHL right now, he is nowhere near the top of any Philadelphia Flyers lists, having only played two games with the team.

    Over the years, the average goals per game in the NHL has varied. This season, the NHL is scoring only 66 percent of the amount of goals it produced in the league's all-time high in 1981-82.

    This differing levels of offense across various NHL eras must be accounted for in ranking all-time goal scorers, as does tenure with the team.

    The following players, all circumstances considered, are the most productive goal scorers in Philadelphia Flyers franchise history.

Honorable Mentions: Rick Tocchet and Rod Brind'Amour

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    Two players who exemplified the flying P were both Rick Tocchet and Rod Brind'Amour.

    Tocchet is one of just three players to score 100 points in the same season he recorded 200 penalty minutes, doing so in the 1992-93 season. No pair of statistics describe Tocchet's playing style better; he would score on the other team's goalie, then punch their best fighter in the face.

    Tocchet had two 40-plus goal seasons, and five of his first seven seasons with the Flyers were 20-plus goal campaigns.

    Brind'Amour was a workhorse who had four 30-plus goal seasons with the Flyers. He ranks 10th on the Flyers' all-time list at 235 career goals with Philadelphia.

No. 10: Mark Recchi

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    Just three goals behind Brind'Amour, and tied with Rick Tocchet is the man who sits 12th on the NHL's all-time points list.

    Before winning a Stanley Cup with the Boston Bruins last season and retiring this summer, Mark Recchi was a prominent point producer for the Flyers during two separate stints from 1992 to 1995 and 1999 to 2004.

    Recchi scored 232 of his 577 career goals with the Flyers after coming to Philadelphia from Pittsburgh in the trade that sent Tocchet to the Penguins in 1992.

    Recchi is one of six players to have scored 50 goals in a single season with Philadelphia, doing so in 1992-93.

    Recchi never scored less than 20 goals in any of his seven full seasons with the Flyers.

No. 9: Simon Gagne

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    Before being traded to Tampa Bay in the 2010 offseason, Simon Gagne was the longest-tenured Flyer and averaged 32 goals per 82 games.

    From his rookie season of 1999-2000 to his last with Philadelphia in 2009-10, Gagne delivered a case of Tastykakes 259 times.

    Gagne's 47 goal season in 2005-06 is the most by any Flyers player in the past 13 years.

No. 8: Bobby Clarke

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    Bobby Clarke is the face of the Philadelphia Flyers. He is the franchise's all-time leader in games played, assists, points, plus/minus and shorthanded goals. He also ranks in the top 10 in goals, penalty minutes, powerplay goals, game-winning goals and shots.

    Though Clarke is the franchise's greatest player of all-time, most of his points came from his abilities as a playmayker. His 852 career assists alone would put him second on the Flyers' all-time points list.

    Still, Clarke scored 358 goals, including nine 20-plus goal seasons and is one of the best finishers in franchise history.

No. 7: Brian Propp

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    Propp played over 300 less games with the Flyers than Clarke, but still scored nine more goals.

    Though Propp played in the goal-heavy 1980s, his stats remain astonishing; four 40-plus goal seasons, eight 30-plus goal seasons. The lowest single season total of his 10 full seasons with the Flyers was 26 goals scored.

No. 6: Rick MacLeish

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    Rick MacLeish scored 328 goals in 741 games, which is a worse per-game total than Propp's 369 in 790, but MacLeish played in an era of the NHL when goals-per-game was roughly an entire goal less than the era Propp played in.

    MacLeish was the first Philadelphia player to score 50 goals in a single season, doing so in 1972-73. He nearly did so again in 1976-77, scoring 49.

    Aside from these two standout seasons, MacLeish had another seven seasons with more than 20 goals.

    He averaged 36 goals per 82 games with the Flyers.

    MacLeish's most notable tally was scoring Philadelphia's cup-winning goal in 1974.

No. 5: Reggie Leach

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    Even the best goal scorers in today's NHL end up splitting their point totals equally between goals and assists; the 2010-11 goals leader Corey Perry scored 50 goals with 48 assists.

    Reggie Leach just knew how to finish. Of his 666 career points, 381 were goals.

    Leach scored 306 goals in 606 games with Philadelphia. He holds the team's single season record with 61 goals in the 1975-76 season.

    Over the eight seasons he spent with the Flyers, Leach averaged 41 goals per 82 games.

No. 4: Bill Barber

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    Bill Barber sits atop the list of all-time goals leaders for the Flyers, having scored all 420 of his career with the franchise.

    Barber never scored less than 20 goals in a season. Nine seasons of more than 30 goals, including five seasons of more than 40 goals.

    He averaged 38 goals per 82 games.

No. 3: Tim Kerr

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    Tim Kerr is third on the Flyers' career goals list, and leads all Flyers with four seasons of more than 50 goals. With 363 goals in 601 career games, Kerr is tied as the Flyers' all-time leader in goals-per-game, according to Hockey-Reference.com.

    However, the four consecutive seasons that Kerr scored above 50 goals were also among the NHL's highest all-time scoring years. The league averaged 7.73 goals per game from the 1983-84 season to the 1986-87 season.

    Comparatively, the NHL is averaging 5.32 goals per game this season. Today's NHL scores just 68.8 percent of the amount it did when Kerr put up those numbers.

    Adjusting Kerr's numbers has him averaging just 38 goals during those four seasons.

    The number are still very impressive, which is why Kerr remains high on this list.

No. 2: John LeClair

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    John LeClair delivered three 50-plus goal seasons and ranks fifth on the Flyers' all-time goal list.

    LeClair's 50 goal seasons came consecutively, in a time when the NHL averaged 5.8 goals per game.

    If those numbers were multiplied by 1.3 to match the 7.73 goals per game style when Kerr played, LeClair's totals jump to 66 goals in those three seasons.

    Both players were 6'3" and weighed 225 pounds. There is no certainty in whether or not the similar style of play from these players would mean each would be equally as effective in each era of the NHL.

    However, LeClair was able to come close to Kerr's totals in a less-offensive era, earning him the No. 2 spot here.

No. 1: Eric Lindros

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    Regardless of how Eric Lindros' career turned out, when he played he was the most productive Philadelphia Flyers goal scorer of all-time.

    Lindros never scored 50 goals in a season like Kerr or LeClair; his career high was 47. However, it only took 486 games for No. 88 to score 290 goals as a Flyer.

    That's 49 goals every 82 games. In other words, Lindros' goal production essentially matched that of a 50-goal scorer, every single season.

    Lindros is tied with Kerr for the franchise lead at 0.6 goals per game. That's without accounting for the drop in scoring between the eras.

    Multiply Lindros' totals to match the late-1980s and Lindros averages 0.8 goals per game. Only a few players from the Edmonton Oilers named Wayne Gretzky and Jari Kurri consistently hit an average that high during that timeframe.

    Because of injury problems highlighted by a disastrous series of concussions, Lindros did not turn out to be the "Next One" he was supposed to.

    However, when he was on the ice in a Flyers uniform, he was the deadliest scoring threat in Philadelphia's history.