The Thanksgiving season is here and while we all get ready to stuff our faces with turkey and talk to family members we don’t like, why not take a minutes to talk about the things we’re thankful for when it comes to the Philadelphia Flyers. It’s been a crazy year for the orange and black. From the possible worst season in franchise history to a summer full of hope and change, there is plenty to be thankful for.
Number 5- Chuck Fletcher
When the Flyers first brought Chuck Fletcher in on December 3, 2018, there was a cautious glimmer of hope. We had just survived the Ron Hextall era, but were fully aware Fletcher had his own faults in Minnesota. With the exception of the 2020 offseason, when he tried to run it back with mainly the same team that had minor success the year before, a move he, on many occasions, admitted was a mistake, he has done a very good job at giving the Philadelphia Flyers new life. His drafting has looked promising and he has been busy during the offseasons bringing in talent to help the roster. Fletcher may not be perfect, but he’s brought this team further in a few years than Hextall ever could.
Number 4- Cam Atkinson
When the Flyers acquired Cam Atkinson from Columbus over the summer he immediately took a page from the Bryce Harper playbook and embraced every ounce of Philadelphia. From his Gritty shirt during his first zoom press conference, to actually meeting Gritty when he arrived at the Wells Fargo Center, to shooting the damn puck, he has earned the love of the Flyers’ faithful pretty quickly. A breath of fresh air compared to the dude they traded for him.
Number 3- Gritty
Gritty is a national treasure. Even though he was clearly brought in as a marketing gimmick to attract the kids and give the adults something to focus on during the games other than the atrocious on-ice product… it works. He has done some incredible things over the years including installing a ball pit and a mechanical bull when there were no fans in the building during the pandemic, to his trek to join the team in Toronto during the playoff bubble, but ultimately found himself in Toronto, Ohio. He’s always got something up his sleeve and is endless fun, something to be thankful for, because the rest of the Flyers usually aren’t.
Number 2- Claude Giroux
Even as he closes in on his 34th birthday, Claude Giroux has still given his all to the Philadelphia Flyers over the last 13 years. He’s on the hunt to finish atop multiple statistical categories and even in 2021, Giroux still leads the Flyers in points and is tied for the team lead in goals. He could very well be the greatest Flyer of all time something the old heads will surely dispute, but it’s getting harder and harder to argue with.
Number 1- Oskar Lindblom’s health
Just about two years ago we received the devastating news that Oskar Lindblom was diagnosed with ewing’s sarcoma. He left the team to enter the battle of his life and after seven months of fighting, he was declared cancer-free. He returned in the 2020 playoff bubble and full-time in 2021, but it wasn’t until the beginning of the 2021-22 season when he was back at his pre-cancer strength test levels, and was announced in training camp that he is still cancer-free. It’s a great outcome for such a great human being.
By: Dan Esche (@DanTheFlyeraFan)
photo credit: twitter.com