Posts Tagged ‘bobby clarke’

Top 10 Philly Athletes of the Past 50 Years: One Man’s View

July 28th, 2019 by Jim Chesko | No Comments | Filed in Baseball, Basketball, Eagles, Flyers, General, Hockey, Phillies, Sixers

Philadelphia’s been the home base for a great number of incredible athletes over the years, but who are the best of the best?

If you’re a faiBobby Clarke and Bernie Parentthful viewer of Comcast SportsNet (I admit, I’m a heavy watcher), you know that CSN has recently been counting down its list of the Top 10 Philly Athletes of all time. (In case you haven’t been paying attention, Numbers 10 through 4 were Bernie Parent, Chuck Bednarik, Carl Lewis, Julius Erving, Steve Van Buren, Joe Frazier and Steve Carlton; will the final trio be Clarkie, Schmidty and Wilt? We shall see.)

Anyway, it got me thinking about MY list. First, however, the parameters: I decided to limit my Top 10 to players whom I’ve seen in action during the past the 50 years and who’ve played the bulk of their career in Philadelphia. So, no Jimmie Foxx or Lefty Grove (way before my time), no Pete Rose (despite how much he meant to the Phils’ 1980 World Series team), no Steve van Buren or Chuck Bednarik (amazing careers for both, but – again – before my time), no Richie Ashburn … and no Kobe Bryant.

Before giving you my personal Top 10, how about a few Philly greats who just missed the cut? Getting “honorable mention” status would be Charles Barkley, Brian Dawkins and – although he spent just four of his prime NBA years as a 76er – Moses Malone. All right, here goes…

10) JOE FRAZIER – Philly’s greatest boxer, “Smokin’ Joe” was an Olympic gold medalist and undisputed World Heavyweight Champion from 1970 to 1972, who had those three memorable battles with Muhammad Ali. Career record of 32-4-1.

9) CARL LEWIS – The Willingboro, New Jersey, sprinter and long-jumper won nine Olympic gold medals and an additional eight World Championship gold medals in the 1980s and 90s. (We won’t penalize Lewis for his inglorious 1993 attempt at singing the national anthem at a Bulls-Nets NBA playoff game.)

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Had Head coach Fred Shero continued coaching the team, would the 1979-80 Flyers have won the Cup over New York?

March 8th, 2014 by Kyle Lutz | Comments Off on Had Head coach Fred Shero continued coaching the team, would the 1979-80 Flyers have won the Cup over New York? | Filed in Flyers, General, Hockey, NHL, Sports

Fred “The Fog” Shero, the Philadelphia Flyers third head coach in team history (behind predecessors Keith Allen and Vic Stasiuk), coached the team from 1971 until 1978. In the process, the team won (its first) two Stanley Cups in team history (1973-74 and ’74-75), and thus became the first 1967 NHL expansion team to win a Stanley Cup out of the six new expansion franchises.

Shero was an amazing motivator, coach and overall contributor to the game of hockey. Prior to his tenure beginning in Philadelphia (which was his first opportunity at coaching at the professional level), he played a little bit of professional hockey with the Rangers (with a career NHL games played total of just 147), which sandwiched stints as a player at the minor league level. He coached in the minor leagues as well for St. Paul, Omaha and Buffalo (in the Rangers’ system).

(Shero/Clarke/AP Photo)

The Fog was an innovator and a creator of many intelligent, well thought out, practical systems as an NHL coach, which continue to be commonly employed by coaches in today’s day and age. He was the first coach to incorporate many of these systems in hockey, which include: studying and applying Soviet Union hockey influences, studying game-day film prior to the next respective game, having his players use in-season strength training, the morning skate, and in general, attempting to dig deep below x’s and o’s in outsmarting opposing coaches.

Shero won the cup with Philadelphia in succession from 1974-75, in the process defeating the rival Bruins and Buffalo. The next year, after the team won their two straight Cups, the team again made it to the Finals, this time losing to the offensive powerhouse Montreal Canadiens in a four-game sweep (three out of the four losses were one goal games). Surely a serious neck injury to two-time Conn Smythe Trophy winner/star starting goalie Bernie Parent midway through the ’75-76 season hampered the team’s chances to compete with Montreal in the finals, but nonetheless, the team was still impressive that season prior to defeat.

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Top 10 Philly Athletes of the Past 50 Years: One Man’s View

February 19th, 2014 by Jim Chesko | Comments Off on Top 10 Philly Athletes of the Past 50 Years: One Man’s View | Filed in Baseball, Basketball, Eagles, Flyers, Football, Hockey, Phillies, Sixers, Sports, TalkSportsPhilly

Philadelphia’s been the home base for a great number of incredible athletes over the years, but who are the best of the best?

If you’re a faiBobby Clarke and Bernie Parentthful viewer of Comcast SportsNet (I admit, I’m a heavy watcher), you know that CSN has recently been counting down its list of the Top 10 Philly Athletes of all time. (In case you haven’t been paying attention, Numbers 10 through 4 were Bernie Parent, Chuck Bednarik, Carl Lewis, Julius Erving, Steve Van Buren, Joe Frazier and Steve Carlton; will the final trio be Clarkie, Schmidty and Wilt? We shall see.)

Anyway, it got me thinking about MY list. First, however, the parameters: I decided to limit my Top 10 to players whom I’ve seen in action during the past the 50 years and who’ve played the bulk of their career in Philadelphia. So, no Jimmie Foxx or Lefty Grove (way before my time), no Pete Rose (despite how much he meant to the Phils’ 1980 World Series team), no Steve van Buren or Chuck Bednarik (amazing careers for both, but – again – before my time), no Richie Ashburn … and no Kobe Bryant.

Before giving you my personal Top 10, how about a few Philly greats who just missed the cut? Getting “honorable mention” status would be Charles Barkley, Brian Dawkins and – although he spent just four of his prime NBA years as a 76er – Moses Malone. All right, here goes…

10) JOE FRAZIER – Philly’s greatest boxer, “Smokin’ Joe” was an Olympic gold medalist and undisputed World Heavyweight Champion from 1970 to 1972, who had those three memorable battles with Muhammad Ali. Career record of 32-4-1.

9) CARL LEWIS – The Willingboro, New Jersey, sprinter and long-jumper won nine Olympic gold medals and an additional eight World Championship gold medals in the 1980s and 90s. (We won’t penalize Lewis for his inglorious 1993 attempt at singing the national anthem at a Bulls-Nets NBA playoff game.)

(more…)

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Why Paul Holmgren is a bad GM and needs to go

December 2nd, 2013 by Kyle Lutz | Comments Off on Why Paul Holmgren is a bad GM and needs to go | Filed in Flyers, General, Hockey

Flyers’ general manager Paul Holmgren needs to be axed, and fast, to say the least.

Don’t get me wrong, he’s made some excellent moves as GM of the team; a role in which he took over in late October of 2006, for his predecessor and former teammate Bobby Clarke. But his bad, yet bonehead moves have outweighed his good moves, and by a long stretch. I think most fellow Flyers’ fans (and/or writers) would agree with me on this, based off of written protests, statements and insults towards him.

Since his first full season as GM in 2007, the team has made the playoffs all but one year, winning a division title in 2011, and making the Stanley Cup Finals and coming up only two wins short of a Stanley Cup Championship in 2010, the year prior. He’s shown to be a very trade-happy manager, which can work in a team’s advantage, and against them as well just as much.

Holmgren brought in the eccentric netminder Ilya Bryzgalov, via a trade from Phoenix, in June of 2011. The team subsequently signed him to a big nine-year, $51 million dollar contract deal soon after they acquired his rights.

Speaking of trades, in order to acquire Bryzgalov, he made perhaps the two biggest trades of his career as GM, in trading star captain Mike Richards to the Kings for Wayne Simmonds, Brayden Schenn and a second-round draft pick. Additionally, that same day (June 23rd) the team sent sniper Jeff Carter packing to Columbus, in exchange for Jakub Voracek, and two draft picks: a first and third round pick in 2011.

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