How the Flyers Created Gritty, the Internet's Most Beloved Mascot

Philadelphia's marketing team tells all about his origin story

During a trip to the NHL All-Star game in 2017, the son of Flyers chief operating officer Shawn Tilger intently watched the antics of the mascot hockey game and afterward asked his father why the team didn’t have a mascot (the Flyers were one of three teams not represented). When the Eagles won the Super Bowl in 2018, Philadelphia’s three mascots, the Phillie Phanatic, the Eagles’ Swoop and the 76ers’ Franklin, met the team at the airport to welcome them home. It was becoming increasingly apparent the Flyers were missing out on opportunities big and small—the marketing team estimated a mascot could attend between 250 and 300 games and community events each year.