Comeback Kids Do It Again, Take 1-0 Series Lead
Throughout the regular season, the Philadelphia Flyers found success when falling behind in the first period.
In the first game of the postseason, they did it again.
It looked like a nightmare from the start for the Flyers as Pittsburgh jumped out early in front of a raucous CONSOL Energy Arena crowd.
Sidney Crosby scored 3:43 into the game.
Tyler Kennedy scored four minutes later.
Then, after it looked like the Flyers would get out of the first down just 2-0, Pascal Dupuis scored.
Facing a 3-0 deficit after the first period, things didn’t look promising for Philadelphia. But, as they have all season, the Flyers fought back.
Daniel Briere got Philadelphia on the board with a breakaway goal. He beat Marc Andre Fleury after taking a stretch pass from Brayden Schenn.
Briere, who was offside on the play, snuck between Brooks Orpik and Paul Martin and let his skill do the rest. Neither team could muster a goal in the remainder of the period, despite good chances by both sides.
In the third period, Briere once again lit the lamp. The undersized forward, who has 98 career points in 98 playoff games, skated around the boards and threw a puck toward the net.
The puck deflected off Crosby and past Fleury a little less than halfway through the third stanza.
Later, he drew a penalty that gave the Flyers their only power play of the game. After passing the puck behind Pittsburgh’s net, Briere was hit by Orpik. Orpik was called for interference on the play.
In the second shift of the man advantage, Scott Hartnell hit Brayden Schenn with a sharp pass. Schenn broke to the middle of the ice and deflected the pass behind Fleury to tie the game.
As time wound down on regulation, the Flyers continued to push and the Penguins continued to push back. Neither would score and the game went to overtime.
It didn’t surprise anyone who pegged this matchup from the start as one of the closest in the NHL playoffs.
Philadelphia came into the game leading the NHL in three comeback wins when trailing 3-0. In game one, they did it again.
Jakub Voracek took a rebound and stuffed past Fleury just 2:23 into the extra period to give the Flyers a 4-3 win and 1-0 lead in the series.
Although the Flyers came out with no rhyme or reason, they found a way to continue to take the punches of Pittsburgh.
Ilya Bryzgalov kept Philadelphia in the game after a shaky first period and his skaters backed him up. Throughout the game, they increased their chances and the quality of those chances got better and better.
While Philadelphia can’t continue to give up leads, the team's success suggests there might not be a lead too great to overcome.
It’s a group of players who found their way to the orange and black through trade, free agency, and the draft. They’re young and determined.
“We were sticking with the plan,” Voracek told NBC’s Pierre McGuire after the game. “We kept putting pucks on net.”
The last puck on net came from the young Czech winger. It was his first playoff goal.
Comeback kids? At least for another night.
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