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This current Maple Leaf was one of the Flyers best centers: A fan’s look
In the 1990s the Philadelphia Flyers featured John LeClair, Eric Lindros and Mikael Renberg. They were otherwise known as the Legion of Doom.
Skating back to the 1970s and early 1980s, we find the LCB line of Reggie Leach, Bob Clarke and Bill Barber waiting to check us in our own offensive zone.
Bookended between both sets of great players was the mid-to-late 1980s trio of Brian Propp, Dave Poulin and Tim Kerr.
While each of the players who comprised these lines did not always play together, coaches across the National Hockey League gritted with what was left of their teeth whenever they did.
One of the best eras in Flyers history
For many reasons the Mike Keenan section of the 1980s is recognized as the second best era in team history.
Not only did his teams make two Stanley Cup appearances, but they also featured some of the best players to have ever worn the Flyers emblem. One of those players was center Poulin.
The Timmins, Ontario native played college hockey at Notre Dame, but was not selected in the NHL draft. So, he spent one season in Sweden before the Flyers signed him as a free agent in March, 1983.
Poulin played two games for the team that spring and then had a breakout year in 1983-84, when he scored 31 goals and added 45 assists.
The twenty-five-old was named captain to start the 1984-85 season and promptly led the team to the Stanley Cup finals.
The Flyers seven-game 1987 Stanley Cup effort against the Edmonton Oilers, who were one of the National Hockey League's greatest offensive juggernauts, was a near masterpiece.
Poulin was awarded the Selke trophy, as the top defensive forward in the League, that season.
One of the greats
After Clarke, the seven-plus years he spent in Philadelphia rank with the best that other great two-way centers in the organization have ever produced.
During that time he tallied a stunning 27 short-handed goals. The 39 he had in his career place him sixth on the NHL's all-time leader board.
Most importantly, he helped lead a young group through the death of goaltender Pelle Lindbergh in 1985 and continually inspired everyone by playing through his own injuries.
The 5 foot 11 inch, 190 pounder was traded to the Boston Bruins in January, 1990. After finishing his career with the Washington Capitals in 1995, he was named head coach of Notre Dame's hockey program.
Poulin was inducted into the Flyers Hall of Fame in 2004.He joined the Toronto Maple Leafs front office in 2009, where he has remained as their Vice President of Hockey Operations.
I became a Flyers fan during the mid-1970s and consider street hockey to be the winter version of wiffle ball. Follow me on Twitter @SeanyOB
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