Ladies and gentlemen, we have a series.
For only the 11th time in the 155 series in which an NHL team has fallen behind by three game to none, there will be a sixth game. And if no hockey team in 35 years has pulled off the greatest comeback in professional sports since the 1975 New York Islanders -- we are still beginning to tread on the edges of historic ground.
Stunningly, the Flyers are back in this thing. They suffered the loss of goaltender Brian Boucher to an injury early in the second period of Game 5 against the Boston Bruins, but they are back in this thing. Trailing the series by three games to none, the Flyers have now won two straight -- and that includes a 4-0 victory in Game 5 on Monday night in which they pretty definitively ran the Bruins out of TD Garden.
They are only halfway to a historic comeback; miles to go, etc. And there are new complications springing up all over. The first is Boucher's injury -- unspecified as of now, but it looked serious. With a puck just trickling through the crease and wide, a pileup in the crease left Boucher on the bottom and not moving. When he eventually was being helped off of the ice, supported by defenseman Chris Pronger and athletic trainer Jim McCrossin under each arm, it appeared as if Boucher could put no weight on his left leg.
Michael Leighton, playing in his first game since suffering a severe ankle sprain on March 16th -- he hadn't even backed up in the playoffs until this very night -- looked steady. The truth is, he really wasn't tested all that hard by a Bruins team that really, really got pummelled by a Flyers team that looked pretty fresh all of a sudden.
But there are other complications as well. Claude Giroux was boarded by the Bruins' Steve Begin with 3 minutes remaining in the second period and took a couple of minutes pulling himself together before skating off. Giroux was not on the Flyers' bench in the third period, and the nature and the extent of the injury are currently unknown.
Shaken, stirred, doesn't matter, though -- the Flyers are still alive. And while the odds still favor the Bruins, well, the current vibe does not. Such was the way this thing flipped in Game 5.