My hands are dark red from clapping. My voice is hoarse from cheering. Most importantly, my Flyers won Game 6, 2-1, and are going back to Boston for Game 7. Against all odds, the 3-0 deficit has been annihilated, and we face the penultimate game of round 2. 19,929 fans packed the house, and we shook the walls. Montreal got us going by taking a 2-0 lead over the Pens before we even dropped the puck. They showed the game in the arena prior the Flyers/Bruins pregame skate, and of course we followed the scoreboard as the game progressed. But really, who needed that game to get pumped up for what we were about to witness.
Once again, the Flyers came out and took it to Boston. They completely dominated in the early going, only to be held in check by Tuukka Rask. That didn’t last too long, as Captain Mike Richards took matters into his own hands. After the puck was forced into the slot, the Flyers jabbed away, and Rask dropped to the ground. The puck squirted loose, and Richards was in perfect position to slam it home. And the orange-clad faithful went wild. If people watching at home put the tv on mute, their neighbors probably still told them to turn the damn thing down.
We headed into the first break holding onto the slim lead, but having pretty much controlled most of the period. The second period saw a lot more pressure from Boston. They spent long periods in the Flyers zone. Icing after icing didn’t make things any easier. I took solace in the fact that most of the play was kept to the perimeter, and Leighton wasn’t called upon to make a ridiculous number of saves. Late in the period, as a Flyers penalty dwindled down, the Bruins were called for an infraction of their own. Right after that, another call gave the Flyers a 5 on 3. Chris Pronger set up in front, where he jostled with Zdeno Chara. Now, a quick aside:
Chara gave Pronger a shove, trying to help his goalie see past the screen. Pronger came back with a shove of his own. Except Chara threw his legs out, and went down like a house of straw. A ridiculous dive, obvious for all to see. Except the idiot refs, who called Pronger for interference. Come on guys, the guy is 6’10” without skates. He’s a freak of a nature, and a physical speciman. When a guy like that goes down from a simple bump, you have to know something is up.
Anyway, the penalty makes it a 4 on 3 situation. Luckily, Briere made them pay. He swooped in from the left, and after his initial shot was blocked by a defenseman, he caught the rebound, continued moving to the right, and fired a shot past Rask. 2-0! The lead held up into the second break. The third was fairly even, with the Bruins again having long stretches in the Flyers zone. A post here, a Leighton save there, and the Flyers kept holding on. With less than 8 minutes left, Leino was pulled down on a breakaway, and awarded a penalty shot. Unfortunately he couldn’t put the biscuit in the basket, as Rask out-waited him and made a nice glove save. Finally, with two minutes left, the Bruins pulled the goalie. It took them a minute, but they finally cracked through as a shot from the point was stopped, but the rebound was put in by Lucic. One timeout later, and the Flyers managed to kill off the final minute and send the game back to Boston.
And oh yeah, Kate Smith was there, and she was proud.
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