Article Written by Michael Doctorovitz
Originally Published on July 11, 2023
In 2010, the Philadelphia Union burst onto the scene as the newest sports team in Philadelphia. Since then, the Union have slowly grown into a household team for many.
In 2022, the Union won the Eastern Conference but lost the MLS Cup final to Los Angeles FC in penalty kicks.
2010 was a huge year for the Flyers as well. A miracle playoff run saw the Mike Richards led Flyers win the Eastern Conference but lose in the Stanley Cup Final to the Chicago Blackhawks.
Since 2010, the Flyers have struggled to find their way back to the Eastern Conference Finals and have been inconsistent when it comes to even making the playoffs.
While the Flyers have slowly declined, the Union rose in their shadow and, after making the MLS Cup final last season, gained a strong following in the process.
In 2022, the Philadelphia Union had an average attendance of 18,126. Also in 2022, the Flyers had an average attendance of 16,719.
However, when the Flyers are good their fans are truly second to none. A sold out Wells Fargo Center on a nightly basis along with fans repping Flyers gear proudly in the streets. The problem is that the Flyers have not played any meaningful hockey in three seasons now.
The Union might not actually play in Philadelphia, Subaru Park is located in Chester, and they might be playing a sport that some don’t understand or care to pay attention to but they have been consistent and have improved with each season. Attending a Union game now reminds you of a Flyers game in the early 2010’s: crowded, lively, exciting and enjoyable.
With the Flyers’ recent peak coming the same year the Union were in their inaugural season, it seems poetic that they would overtake them for fourth in the Philly sports team rankings.
The Locker Room with Billy Schweim