Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Cabrey: Top Five Spectrum Moments

After 43 years of hockey, basketball, lacrosse, indoor soccer, concerts, and whatever else can be held inside of an arena, the Spectrum will sadly be no more. The former home of the Flyers and Sixers is finally meeting the wrecking ball today, making room for the Philly Live! (their exclamation point, not mine) complex.

For me personally, my top Spectrum moment was watching Kerry Kittles and Villanova beat North Carolina 76-56 on Jan. 20, 1996, earning the Wildcats a second win over the Tar Heels that season. That, however, did not crack what I feel were the five best moments ever to take place at America's Showplace.

5) Flyers beat up, then just beat the Red Army
The Cold War was certainly hot on Jan. 11, 1976 as the two-time defending Stanley Cup champ Flyers hosted Central Red Army (CSKA Moscow) in the Soviet powerhouse's final contest in a exhibition tour against NHL sides.

After an Ed Van Impe hit on Valeri Kharlamov, Red Army coach Konstantin Loktev pulled his team off the ice. Eventually, they returned only for the Flyers to score quickly after en route to a 4-1 victory.

4) The Doctor rocks the baby against the Lakers
Though the Sixers would win the 1983 NBA title with a sweep of the Los Angeles Lakers in the Finals, this iconic dunk did not happen then, but rather earlier that year in a 122-120 Sixers' victory over LA on Jan. 5.

3) Daigneault sends it back to Edmonton
On May 28, 1987, with the Flyers facing Edmonton in a must-win Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final, J.J. Daigneault picked a perfect time to earn his first and only point of the postseason. Just 84 seconds after Brian Propp tied the game at two, Daigneault let go a shot from the blue line that beat Oilers goalie Grant Fuhr and kept the Flyers alive with a 3-2 win.

2) The Shot ends a NCAA Tournament Classic
The East Regional Final between Duke and Kentucky on March 28, 1992 was a classic contest before the final 2.1 seconds of overtime. What happened after made it epic, as Christian Laettner drained a jumper from the foul line to give the Blue Devils a 103-102 victory. Laettner was perfect on the night, shooting 10-for-10 from the field, 10-for-10 from the line for 31 points.

1) Flyers hoist the Cup for the first time
Seven seasons after coming into the NHL, the Flyers reached the league's mountaintop for the first time on May 19, 1974 when Rick MacLeish's goal gave Philadelphia a 1-0 victory over Boston in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Finals.

Contact Mike Cabrey at mcabrey@thereporteronline.com or at Twitter @mcabrey.

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