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Flyers to debut Reverse Retro jerseys, bring back the Cooperalls on Tuesday

The Flyers will don the classic Cooperalls, made famous by the Flyers teams of 1982 and 1983, in pregame warmups.

The Flyers will debut their new "Reverse Retro" jerseys on Tuesday night against the St. Louis Blues.
The Flyers will debut their new "Reverse Retro" jerseys on Tuesday night against the St. Louis Blues.Read moreCourtesy of the Flyers

When Travis Sanheim arrived back in Philadelphia this summer, he was asked to model the team’s new “Reverse Retro” jerseys.

Sanheim has “no idea” why he was chosen to be the model, but he said it was cool to be the one to showcase the new jerseys. While he really liked the Reverse Retros, he knows not everyone was so enthusiastic about the sweaters. The new Flyers’ game jersey is white and black with orange accents, reminiscent of their jerseys during the Stanley Cup years.

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» READ MORE: Scott Laughton’s role with the Flyers continues to grow on the ice and in the locker room

“I know some people had some doubts about it,” Sanheim said. “But I think the Cooperalls were a nice touch and something that we’re the only team in the league doing it.”

The Flyers introduced Cooperalls ahead of the 1981-82 season. Created by Cooper Canada, the name Cooperalls came to refer to full-length hockey pants.

Cooperalls had a nylon shell that looked like tracksuit pants. Inside, there was an elastic girdle that went from the top of the knees to the middle of the rib cage. There were pockets built in where pads could be inserted. When combined with Cooper Canada’s lightweight shoulder pads, gloves, and shin guards, Cooperalls weighed less than traditional hockey equipment, Cooper Canada claimed.

The Cooperalls the Flyers sported were black with an orange stripe along the leg and were actually manufactured by CCM Hockey and called the “Propac.” They lasted from the 1981-82 season through 1982-83 before the NHL banned them.

Made from nylon, the Cooperalls had less traction on the ice, so when players slid, they crashed harder. They were restrictive and extra warm as well.

Forty-one years later, the Flyers are bringing the banned Cooperalls back ― but just for warmups ahead of eight select games.

As the model, Sanheim only wore the Cooperalls for the photo shoot. He said he was definitely sweating, but he’s not sure if it was because of the pants or the photo shoot itself. The 2022 versions have zippers in them to aid players in getting them on and off. They definitely felt different, he said, although he personally had no problems with them.

“I’m interested to see what everyone says about them during warmups, if anyone has any complaints with them, if they’re tight on their legs, or the movement in warmups,” Sanheim said. “But I’m sure there’ll be some guys that are a little bit more picky.”

The Flyers will first break out the Reverse Retro jerseys and the Cooperalls on Tuesday for their game against the St. Louis Blues. The other dates:

  1. Wednesday, Nov. 23, at Washington Capitals

  2. Friday, Nov. 25, vs. Pittsburgh Penguins | NHL Thanksgiving Showdown

  3. Thursday, Dec. 1, vs. Tampa Bay Lightning | ‘80s Throwback Thursday

  4. Thursday, Dec. 15, at New Jersey Devils

  5. Thursday, Jan. 5, vs. Arizona Coyotes | ‘90s Throwback Thursday

  6. Saturday, Jan. 14, at Washington Capitals

  7. Thursday, Jan. 19, vs. Chicago Blackhawks | 2000s Throwback Thursday

From the bottom up

Assuming the Cooperalls don’t mess with some of Sanheim’s teammates’ superstitions, the Flyers will head into Tuesday with momentum after beating their former captain, Claude Giroux.

The win over the Ottawa Senators on Saturday was one of the Flyers’ better performances, coach John Tortorella said, because the team actually played with the puck. That started with the forecheck, which, in turn, started with the fourth line.

“I thought a lot of that came from more of our depth guys,” Tortorella said. “I thought Frosty’s line had it.”

That line, which featured Morgan Frost at center and Nicolas Deslauriers and Tanner Laczynski on the wings, played about 10 minutes Saturday. They kept things simple, Laczynski said, getting the puck behind the Senators defense, going hard on the forecheck, and winning possession of the puck down low.

“I think when you do that consistently shift after shift, you kind of get some confidence and it kind of wears on their D,” Laczynski said. “So I think we kind of just kept building off of that.”

There’s still a lot to work on, Tortorella said, but he said he’s not going to get down on the team since it put in a lot of effort, as evidenced by the fourth line’s success.


The Flyers host the St. Louis Blues at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Wells Fargo Center. ... James van Riemsdyk (finger) participated in a rehab skate Monday with his hand wrapped. He had surgery just over two weeks ago and is expected to be out around six weeks. ... The Flyers hosted 20 active-duty service members from the U.S. Armed Forces for a skate after practice and gifted them special jerseys.