1. SLOW START The Devils jumped all over the Flyers at the start of the game through the first 10 minutes, out-shooting the Flyers 11-0… The Devils got on the board first and created many more scoring chances. They have scored first in six of their eight games so far in the playoffs.
2. FROM 40 MINUTES ON Just as the Devils turned it on, were first to every puck and came away with the lead in the first period, the Flyers turned the tables and took over in the final two periods… The Flyers outshot the Devils 8-1 through the first nine minutes of the 3rd period, capped off by a power-play goal from NHL leading scorer Claude Giroux… Overall the Flyers out-shot the Devils by a 30 to 11 margin through the final two periods and overtime.
3. GROSSMANN'S RETURN For the first time since Game Four of the Conference Quarterfinals, Nicklas Grossmann returned to the lineup recovering from his upper-body injury… Flyers head coach Peter Laviolette eased him into the game giving Grossmann 4:48 of ice time in the first period, but eventually working him into 16:26 of ice time through almost 65 minutes of game action.
4. BRIERE SCORES IN OT … TWICE! Quickly into the overtime period Danny Briere, the Flyers bench and the Flyers fans all though the game was over. That was not the case as the video replay showed that Briere kicked the puck in the net. The NHL's official ruling on the play is as follows:
At 2:13 of the first overtime in the Flyers/Devils game, video review determined that Philadelphia forward Daniel Briere kicked the puck with his left skate into the net. According to rule 49.2 "A goal cannot be scored by an attacking player who uses a distinct kicking motion to propel the puck into the net."
Just 2:18 later Briere would officially seal the deal and give the Flyers the victory.
5. LAVY'S TAKE Flyers head coach Peter Laviolette talks about the poor start and coming back from being down 0-1:
"Nobody liked the first period. The players didn’t like it, I didn’t like it, the fans didn’t like it. We’re not going to be successful playing that way. It was clearly for me, the start of the second period and for the remainder of the game that we started to skate and jump and execute a little bit more with what we were trying to do.
The Flyers are now 36-37 all time in overtime playoff games.
It was the fourth time the Flyers have gone to overtime in the playoffs against the Devils franchise (As NJD in Gm 3 1995, Gm 3 2010 and in 1978 vs Colorado Rockies). The Flyers have won all four games.
The Flyers are now 32-36 all time in Game 1 of a series and 2-0 this year.
They are 23-8 all-time in playoff series when winning Game 1. They have a record of 19-12 all-time in Game 2 following a Game 1 win.
In all three previous series between the Flyers and Devils, the team that has won Game 1 has gone on to win the series.
Danny Briere scored his 48th and 49th career playoff goals tonight. He scored his 13th career game-winning playoff goal and ninth as a Flyer. Briere’s overtime winner was the third playoff OT winner of his career.
Briere is now 2nd all-time in Flyers history in game-winning goals (9) trailing only Rick MacLeish's 10 game-winners. He had been tied with both Reggie Leach and John LeClair at eight.
The Devils outshot the Flyers 11-0 in the first 10:01 of the game. The Flyers then outshot the Devils 36-15 over the rest of regulation and overtime.
Who else but Danny Briere?
Briere recorded two goals on the day, including the game-winner in overtime to increase his playoff total to seven goals, which leads all players.
In almost Deja Vu fashion from the quarterfinal series Game 1 against Pittsburgh, Briere scored the first Flyers goal and scored it on a breakaway.
And just like in Game 1 against Pittsburgh, Briere posted two goals.
"I grew up watching playoff hockey and when I was a kid I always dreamed of one day I’d have the chance to play in those big games. When I have the opportunity like I have this year and like I’ve had the past few years in the playoffs you try to make the best of it and try to enjoy it as much as possible." - Danny Briere
"I love playing at this time of the year, I think it is fun. I think it brings out the best in me. So, it is definitely great being out there." - James van Riemsdyk
“I don’t know what to say. A win is a win. It is important. Every win meant a lot for us in the playoffs. Like I said before if you want to compete for the Stanley Cup you need to win home games.” - Ilya Bryzgalov
Today's turning point came following the Flyers first power play of the game in the first period.
Although the Flyers were unsuccessful and recorded no shots on net on the power play, the momentum was on their side, finishing the period out-shooting the Devils.
The second period brought two quick goals to give the Flyers the lead, and although the Devils would eventually tie the game and force overtime, the majority of the shots and scoring chances came from the Flyers for the remainder of the contest.
PIC OF THE NIGHT: Danny Briere celebrates the first of his two goals in Game 1.
Flyers 4, Devils 3 (OT) Associated Press
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Danny Briere scored the winning goal 4:36 into overtime to lead the Philadelphia Flyers to a 4-3 win over the New Jersey Devils on Sunday to open the Eastern Conference semifinals.
Briere had his second chance at the winner count minutes after his earlier attempt was overturned on review because he kicked it into the net. He also scored in the second period.