This is a daily column that will run during the duration of the NHL lockout. It is not meant to depress hockey fans, but is rather intended to provide a reminder of some of the more memorable moments in Philadelphia Flyers' history, and act as a much-needed distraction from the ongoing negativity surrounding the lockout for hockey fans. What must not be forgotten during the labor strife is just how great of a game we have been blessed with to enjoy throughout the years.
The Flyers have lost their last three December 1st outings (2003 - 2010), but have still managed to put together a 9-6-5-0 overall record -- including a sparkling 5-2-2-0 mark at home -- over the course of franchise history. Philadelphia has scored 55 goals while giving up 45 to their opponents in the 20 December 1st contests.
Some of the more memorable moments and brief recaps in Flyers history that took place on December 1st:
1973: Jimmy Watson's first career NHL goal early in the second period proved to be the game-winner and Bernie Parent made 20 saves as the Flyers defeated the New York Islanders, 2-1, at Nassau Coliseum.
Trailing 1-0 entering the second period, Philadelphia got goals from Orest Kindrachuk and Watson within a 1:16 span, and Parent made the lead hold up the rest of the way.
1974: Bill Barber and Ross Lonsberry each scored a pair of goals, Bobby Clarke added a goal and four assists, and Bernie Parent stopped all 22 shots he faced as the Flyers bludgeoned the expansion Kansas City Scouts by a 10-0 score at the Spectrum.
Gary Dornhoefer, Andre Dupont, Orest Kindrachuk, and Dave Schultz also lit the lamp for Philadelphia, while Terry Crisp added three assists and Don Saleski contributing a pair of helpers.
Parent got much more offensive support than he needed as he recorded his 12th win and fourth shutout of the season.
The game was a major mismatch between a Flyers club that was beginning their march towards a first Stanley Cup championship and a first-year band of journeymen. Philly jumped all over goaltender Peter McDuffe with 20 shots and a 5-0 first period lead, then poured four more tallies past him in the second.
1977: Reggie Leach's goal with 3:50 remaining in the third period snapped a 2-2 tie and Wayne Stephenson made 32 saves as the Flyers skated past the Los Angeles Kings, 4-2, at the Forum in Inglewood, California.
Bill Barber and Bob Dailey both tallied power play markers and Tom Bladon hit the empty net as Philadelphia won their fourth consecutive contest.
1979: Behn Wilson notched a goal and an assist and Phil Myre made 36 saves as the Flyers -- despite being outplayed for much of the game -- managed a 4-4 tie with the Toronto Maple Leafs at Maple Leaf Gardens. The deadlock helped Philadelphia extend their undefeated streak to 20 games (16-0-4).
Brian Propp, Bobby Clarke, and Rick MacLeish also beat Toronto goalie Mike Palmateer, who made 21 saves in the contest.
The Flyers were outshot in each period (40-25 for the game), including 14-5 in a third period in which Myre was tested heavily. The Philadelphia netminder yielded the game-tying goal to Dan Maloney midway through the frame.
1981: Bobby Clarke and Paul Holmgren staked the Flyers to a 2-0 lead late in the second period and the Orange-and-Black held on for a 2-1 victory over the Winnipeg Jets at the Spectrum.
Pete Peeters stopped 28 of 29 Winnipeg shots -- including a perfect first period in which the Philly was outshot 17-9 on home ice, yet held a 1-0 lead -- yielding only a Morris Lukowich tally 44 seconds after Holmgren made it a 2-0 game.
1982: Darryl Sittler notched a Gordie Howe hat trick, Bill Barber scored twice, and Pelle Lindbergh made 38 saves to lead the Flyers to a hard-fought 4-2 triumph over the Edmonton Oilers at Northlands Coliseum.
Lindsay Carson also scored for Philadelphia, and Bobby Clarke added two helpers.
Sittler assisted on Barber's second period marker then fought ex-Flyer Kenny Linseman later in the frame, and scored midway through the third to give Philly a 2-1 lead and complete the Gordie Howe hat trick. He also added another assist on Barber's empty-net goal with 47 seconds remaining to seal the victory.
Wayne Gretzky assisted on both Oilers goals, and Andy Moog made 33 saves in the loss.
1984: Tim Kerr scored a pair of goals and Bob Froese stopped 30 of 31 shots to lead the Flyers over the Pittsburgh Penguins at the Spectrum.
Pens goaltender Roberto Romano was spectacular in keeping the opening period scoreless as Philadelphia outshot the visitors, 19-5.
But with the Penguins carrying play in a middle period that saw them outshoot the home squad by a 12-6 count, Ed Hospodar finally put one past Romano late in the frame to give the Flyers a 1-0 lead at the second intermission.
Philadelphia took control in the third when Kerr struck twice, giving him 23 goals in 23 games for the campaign.
Froese lost his shutout bid when Doug Sheddon solved him with 7:01 left in regulation.
1988: Mike Bullard and Brian Propp scored second period goals to erase a 2-0 deficit and Ron Hextall made 25 saves as the Flyers and Montreal Canadiens skated to a 2-2 draw at the Spectrum.
After Bob Gainey gave Montreal a 1-0 lead after one, Claude Lemieux doubled the Philadelphia deficit just seven seconds into the middle frame.
Bullard got the Flyers on the board 1:44 later, and Propp tied it up midway through the stanza.
Patrick Roy finished with 21 saves for the Habs.
1989: Mike Bullard scored with 33 seconds remaining in the third period to lift the Flyers to a 3-2 victory over the Washington Capitals at the Cap Center in Landover, Maryland.
With Philadelphia already trailing by a 2-1 count late in the second period and in the midst of attempting to kill off a Craig Berube elbowing minor, Keith Acton scored a shorthanded marker to knot the game at 2-2 heading into the third.
Rick Tocchet netted a first period goal, and Ken Wregget held the fort with 26 saves as the Caps outshot Philly by a 28-17 margin.
Bob Mason made 14 saves in the losing effort.
1996: Scott Daniels goal in the latter half of the third period broke a 3-3 tie and carried the Flyers to a 4-3 triumph over the Vancouver Canucks at the CoreStates Center.
John LeClair and Rod Brind'Amour added a goal and an assist apiece, and Eric Desjardins also scored for the Flyers.
Ron Hextall made 16 saves to garner the victory, while Corey Hirsch stopped 28 of 32 shots in defeat.
2001: Roman Cechmanek turned aside all 15 shots he faced to record his first shutout of the year and Philadelphia got goals from Jeremy Roenick and Eric Desjardins in a 2-0 blanking of the Tampa Bay Lightning at the First Union Center.
While Cechmanek stopped five shots in each period, his counterpart at the other end of the ice, Kevin Weekes, was spectacular in making 40 saves on 42 Flyers shot he faced in the loss.
The victory snapped a four-game winless skid (0-2-2) for both Philadelphia and Cechmanek.
Other Notable December 1st Flyer Moments:
2010: Tim Thomas stopped all 41 Flyers shots -- including Scott Hartnell on a late second period penalty shot that could have drawn Philly back to within 2-1 -- as the Boston Bruins skated to a 3-0 shutout of the Flyers at the Wells Fargo Center.
As For The Present:
With the lockout now well into its third month and games canceled through December 14th, the official count of games the team has lost all-time due to lockout is now at 147 -- 36 in the shortened 1994/05, the entirety of the 82-game schedule in 2004/05, and 29 thus far this season:
October 11 Boston Bruins @ FLYERS
October 13 FLYERS @ NY Islanders
October 18 Pittsburgh Penguins @ FLYERS
October 20 Winnipeg Jets @ FLYERS
October 25 FLYERS @ Montreal Canadiens
October 27 Toronto Maple Leafs @ FLYERS
October 28 FLYERS @ Buffalo Sabres
October 30 Dallas Stars @ FLYERS
November 1 New Jersey Devils @ FLYERS
November 3 Anaheim Ducks @ FLYERS
November 4 FLYERS @ NY Rangers
November 6 Buffalo Sabres @ FLYERS
November 8 FLYERS @ Carolina Hurricanes
November 10 Carolina Hurricanes @ FLYERS
November 13 Minnesota Wild @ FLYERS
November 16 FLYERS @ Buffalo Sabres
November 17 Buffalo Sabres @ FLYERS
November 21 Ottawa Senators @ FLYERS
November 23 Winnipeg Jets @ FLYERS
November 24 FLYERS @ NY Rangers
November 28 FLYERS @ Toronto Maple Leafs
November 29 FLYERS @ NY Islanders
December 1 FLYERS @ Florida Panthers
December 4 FLYERS @ Tampa Bay Lightning
December 6 San Jose Sharks @ FLYERS
December 8 FLYERS @ New York Islanders
December 9 New York Islanders @ FLYERS
December 11 New Jersey Devils @ FLYERS
December 13 FLYERS @ Washington Capitals
Many Flyers are currently playing as the lockout drags on -- now nearing the 80-day mark -- scattered throughout different leagues in Europe. Some of the bigger names NHLers have already bolted for alternate leagues in which to play hockey, with Pittsburgh's Sidney Crosby and Steven Stamkos being the latest rumored to be considering the jump.
U.S. federal mediators stepped in to take a shot at helping the sides come to some sort of common ground as they joined negotiations Wednesday and Thursday, but talks went nowhere and the sides have scrapped mediation involvement altogether in any future talks.
The latest development has the players considering an offer made by NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman to meet with owners without any hierarchy from either side -- just the owners and players. A decision from the players is expected sometime Saturday.
While there is still hope that sanity will somehow prevail and there can still be something to salvage of a 2012-13 NHL season, it is unfortunately looking more-and-more like the sides may just be content to self-destruct.