The Broad Street Bullies-era Philadelphia Flyers were called lots of things -- animals, barbarians, and many other not-so-nice terms.
But one other thing they were called -- winners.
The Flyers rode a two-pronged attack of talent and physicality to a pair of Stanley Cups, in 1974 and '75. HBO Sports now turns its award-winning documentary eye on that era with the premiere of "Broad Street Bullies." The hour-long film will make its national debut on HBO Tuesday night at 10 p.m., with repeat broadcasts throughout the month.
Captained by Bobby Clarke and led by a colorful cast of characters, including Bob "The Hound" Kelly, Don Saleski, Joe Watson, Andre "Moose" Dupont and Dave "The Hammer" Schultz, the Flyers ran roughshod over the League in winning back-to-back titles.
"This film explores how a group of characters, who also happened to be an extraordinarily talented collection of hockey players that enjoyed contact on the ice, formed one of the most prominent and controversial teams in pro sports history."
-- Ross Greenburg, president, HBO SportsStanley Cup
The film examines the club's rise to prominence in the 1970s and how as the team became more hated outside of the Philadelphia area, it became a cherished part of the local fabric.
"This film explores how a group of characters, who also happened to be an extraordinarily talented collection of hockey players that enjoyed contact on the ice, formed one of the most prominent and controversial teams in pro sports history," said Ross Greenburg, president, HBO Sports. "We are going to re-trace the steps that led to the love affair between the city and the team, and show how to this day these players are revered in Philadelphia and despised elsewhere."
It's also a bit of a coincidence that the film will premiere Tuesday, during the Flyers' second-round series with the Boston Bruins. The Flyers beat the Bruins in six memorable games in the 1974 Stanley Cup Final, which cemented the team and its style of play in hockey lore.
Contact Adam Kimelman at firstname.lastname@example.org