As predicted, this city still hasn't come down yet from Friday night's Flyers' comeback-on-top-of-a-comeback victory, arguably the best sports moment in Philadelphia since the Phillies won the World Series 17 months ago. Actually, it was one of the most electrifying games of any kind, in any sport, that I've ever seen. Somehow you felt they would come back from that 0-3 hole in the game, just like they came back from the 0-3 hole in the series. The symmetry was just too perfect.
Anyone who watched the game will not forget..."The Timeout"
It happened because, down 3-0, coach Peter Laviolette called a time-out and settled his players down.
"After the time-out," Leighton said, "he said to me, 'Leights, settle down. Shut the door. We're going to score some goals.' "
"Lavy called a time-out and said, 'Let's just focus on one goal at a time,' " Gagne said. " 'Let's try to get one goal in the first and then try to tie the game. Then they might start to get nervous.' "
Laviolette's uncanny aura of calm has been one of the keys to this remarkable comeback. He has been Coach Placid for this particular Miracle on Ice. For each step, each game, Laviolette has asked his team not to look at the historic record on 0-3 series deficits. Just ask themselves, "Can we beat the Boston Bruins tonight?"
Sometimes in sports the contribution from a great coach or manager is more intangible -- Charlie Manuel is Exhibit A for that -- but in this case the hockey world watched Laviolette do something amazing, in guiding his players to that remarkable comeback. It was another great Flyers coach, the late Fred Shero, who said famously, "Win today and we walk together forever."
The 2010 Flyers have already walked a long way down that road.
UPDATE: Flyers 6.0.