Friday, May 14, 2010

Miracle achieved: Flyers pull off improbable comeback

(Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Have we all just witnessed the greatest comeback in the history of sports? The Flyers, down 3-0 in Game 7 after being down 3-0 in the series, somehow found it in them for one last comeback, scoring 4 straight goals to defeat the Bruins, 4-3, and advance to the Eastern Conference Finals. The comeback made the Flyers the 4th team in sports history to erase a 0-3 deficit and win a playoff series, although I don't think any of them pulled it off in quite this dramatic of a fashion.

The hero of the series for the Flyers was Simon Gagne, whose return to the ice in Game 4 directly coincided with the Flyers turning the series around. Gagne not only scored the game winning goal in Game 4 and Game 7, but he also allowed the Flyers to shuffle the forwards around and roll out three lines that were legitimate threats to score. Also deserving massive credit for the comeback was head coach Peter Laviolette. Somehow, Laviolette kept the team focused on winning one game at a time and didn't let them panic when all seemed lost. It's a breath of fresh air for the Flyers to have a competent coach pushing all the right buttons.

I'm not sure there is any way I can put into words how amazing this comeback was from the Flyers. To first come back from the dead in the series and then also do it within the context of a single game shows the determination, grit and, frankly, the balls that this Flyers team has. The Flyers don't care about the score, don't care if everyone counts them out, don't care if they aren't supposed to win, they just keep on playing their game and know that, eventually, things will turn out their way.

Even more shocking after the win is wrapping your mind around the idea that the Flyers, the 7th seed in the Eastern Conference, are now hosting the 8th seeded Canadiens in the Eastern Conference Finals. The Canadiens aren't your typical 8 seed, though, as they have ridden a hot goaltender past the two best offenses in the league in Washington and Pittsburgh. Still, everything is still pretty well lined for the Flyers to make an improbable run to the Stanley Cup Finals.

Relish this feeling, Flyers fans. Your team just pulled off a miracle. I know that word is thrown around a lot in sports but it must be applied to what the Flyers just did. This series immediately jumps into the ranks of the greatest moments in Philly sports history and is one that we will be talking about for years to come. Hopefully the Flyers have enough left in the tank to bring home the Cup and make this comeback even more meaningful.

2 comments:

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