A Look Back At The Flyers 23-Game Unbeaten Streak

Bill Barber, Philadelphia Flyers (Photo by Melchior DiGiacomo/Getty Images)
Bill Barber, Philadelphia Flyers (Photo by Melchior DiGiacomo/Getty Images) /

While it wouldn’t turn out to be the Flyers longest unbeaten streak, the stretch back in 1976 is still something to behold.

Bill Barber became the third Flyers player to record 100 points in a season when he grabbed two assists against the Vancouver Canucks. It was a comeback victory that saw the Flyers score three unanswered goals after going down 2-0.

Barber assisted on goals by Jack McIlhargey and Reggie Leach in the second period. Bobby Clarke had reached that feat three separate times, including that same season. Rick MacLeish had posted one 100-point season previously as well.

Barber would finish that season with 112 points, the only season he crossed the 100-point threshold. His 50 goals were also the most he would ever score in a single season.

That wasn’t the only milestone to come from that game, though. With the comeback victory, the Flyers moved their unbeaten streak to 23 games (17-0-6). They would go on to lose their next game, bringing the streak to a halt.

The streak began on January 29th and lasted until that final win on March 18th. In that period of time, the team scored less than three goals only four times. Their record before the streak was 30-10-8 and they had lost three straight games. After the streak, they sat at 47-10-14. They won six consecutive and eight consecutive during the streak. They only posted back to back tie games twice.

The Flyers scored 102 goals while giving up only 64. 10 of those games saw the opponent only score one goal. And aside from five games during the streak, the team didn’t give up more than two goals in a game. Leach led the way with 18 goals in the 23 games. Barber had 35 points while Clarke was right behind him with 32. 20 players posted at least one point during the streak.

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The Flyers would end up posting an even longer streak years later. But this streak helped lead them to their third consecutive division championship and second consecutive conference championship. They would make it to a third straight appearance in the Stanley Cup Finals, but could not come away with a third straight cup.