Claude Giroux will no doubt go down in Philadelphia Flyers history as one of the greatest players of all-time. Though just how close is he to greatness? After 13 seasons and counting, Giroux has amassed quite the resume in Philly, quickly rising up the leaderboards of nearly every major stat there is. Going stat-by-stat, let’s see how much more ground the captain has to cover before he can snag the number one slot as the greatest Flyer ever.
Flyers Record- 1,144
Claude Giroux- 943
Early in the 2021 season, Claude Giroux eclipsed Bill Barber and took sole possession of second place in Flyers’ history in games played with 943. He now only has Bobby Clarke in front of him, who has 1,144 games of service in orange and black. That’s only a 201 game difference, meaning if Giroux has three full 82 game seasons left in the tank, the record is all his. To think Giroux is the only player to ever even sniff Clarke’s record is incredibly impressive considering it’s been 37 years since he laced up a pair of skates.
Flyers Record- 420
Claude Giroux- 273
Claude Giroux finally begins his ascension up the top 10 in the goal scoring category this season when he passed Simon Gagne for 9th place. G was never a top goalscorer, and his production has slowed in each of the last four seasons, but during a full 82 game season he still seems good for around 20 goals per year. As far as the leaderboards are concerned, he will pass the next few players in quick succession. Lindros at number eight is in his sights next with 290, and Reggie Leach is next in seventh with 306. Number six and five are Rick MacLeish and John LeClair with 328 and 333 respectively. 60 goals separate Giroux from the top five. Will he hit that number before all is said and done? It’s not impossible as long as his production doesn’t take a monumental fall in the near future.
Flyers Record- 852
Claude Giroux- 585
Giroux locked up the number two spot in assists in Flyers’ history three seasons ago, and has slowly been chipping away at the number one spot since. The issue? Bobby Clarke’s 852 are still a long way away. With 267 assists separating the two, It’s pretty unlikely Giroux ever comes close to swiping that number one spot. Even at 30 assists a year that’s almost nine years worth of work, something Giroux probably doesn’t have left in the tank. At this point, Giroux will just do his best to make sure his number two seed is as hard to reach as possible for the next guy to chase down the record.
Flyers Record- 1,210
Claude Giroux 858
Claude Giroux sat all alone in the fourth spot for a few years as the gap between number five and number three was 152 points. though it was worth the wait as he finally passed Brian Propp for third place in Flyers’ history during the 2021 season with his 850th point. He tacked on eight more before the end of the year and now he eagerly awaits the start of next season as he’s just 26 points away from passing Bill Barber for second place. Though, that may be as far as he ends up getting, as Clarke holds the crown in points with 1,210 points, 352 more than Giroux’s current total. It’s a number that isn’t impossible for Giroux to reach, but it’s certainly unlikely he’s got the six or seven seasons in him it would take to eclipse that total. Just like assists, the best thing he can do is just to rack up as many as he can to make sure he holds that number two spot for years to come.
Flyers Record- 61
Claude Giroux 46
John LeClair currently holds the number one slot with 61 game-winning goals in his career, but Claude Giroux is slowly but surely creeping his way up the list. Currently in seventh place with 46 goals, there’s just a 15 goal difference between the two. While that may be a bit too big of a leap to climb, but he will undoubtedly make some noise in this category before he calls it a career. He is only one behind sixth place Simon Gagne, two behind fifth place Reggie Leach, and four behind fourth place Rick MacLeish. Those should all be attainable within the next few seasons, even if LeClair is just out of reach.
Power Play Goals
Flyers Record- 144
Claude Giroux- 81
Considering the success Claude Giroux has found on the powerplay over the years, it’s kind of surprising he just snuck into the top ten late in the 2019-20 season. He only needs two goals to pass Eric Lindros for sole possession of eighth place, but after that there is a bit of a hill to climb. Seventh to first looks like- Simmonds (91), MacLeish (98), Clarke (99), LeClair (102), Propp (103), Barber (104), and Tim Kerr (144). It’s almost impossible Giroux even sniffs Kerr’s 144 goals, but the rest are at least within striking distance. Giroux’s goal production on the powerplay has ranged wildly over the past few seasons, from nine and seven to two and one, thus making his trajectory over the later stages of his career harder to predict. As he gets older it’s possible he get deployed in much more favorable offensive minutes, so maybe he stands a chance to at least hit triple digits and make the top five.
Flyers Record- 3,246
Claude Giroux- 2,443
Claude Giroux currently sits fourth all-time in Flyers’ history in shots on goal, and has posted pretty similar numbers in that category through his whole career, so this one may be a little easier to predict. He averages about 200 shots a year. Sometimes as many as 240, others in the 190 range, but has always been within that mark. Bobby Clarke, who sits in third place has 2,582 and Brian Propp holds second place with 2,645. With the assumption that Giroux will produce another 200 shots, he will probably overtake both during the 2021-22 season, or at least very early in 2022-23. First place belongs to Bill Barber with 3,246. That’s an 803 shot difference. Assuming Giroux slows down production within the next few seasons, there may be a shred of doubt he can steal this record, but it’s also very well within the realm of possibility he could hit it three years down the road if his totals remain on a linear path.
By: Dan Esche (@DanTheFlyeraFan)
photo credit: nbcsports.com