BOSTON — That’s one way to wash out the bad taste of Boston.
Coming into Thursday night’s game, the Flyers had managed just one win in their last 10 games at TD Garden.
The Bruins, who had dropped four of their last five on home ice, appeared hungry to right some recent wrongs, so nobody would have blamed the Flyers if they were content to pack up their one point and take it back to Philadelphia for the start of a five-game homestead.
It hasn’t been how many the Flyers have lost here recently, but how they’ve lost them.
Two years ago, Drew Stafford flipped in a fluke shot off Brandon Manning’s stick that beat Steve Mason with six seconds remaining in regulation.
But wait, it gets worse.
The season opener in 2014, Mason used his blocker to stop a shot that went straight up in the air before Chris Kelly bat home the rebound in the final two minutes for a 2-1 Boston victory.
And then there was the disappointment of all disappointments on March 7, 2015. With the Bruins down a score, Brad Marchand scored the game-tying goal with 15 seconds remaining in the third period and then punctuated the pain with the game-winner in overtime. It killed the Flyers’ psyche as they never recovered and missed the playoffs that season.
To this day, it still lingers.
“Yeah, it’s funny you say that. There was about five minutes left in this game and I kind of had a flashback when they scored twice with a minute left,” Claude Giroux said. “Those were games that we needed, but guys battled [tonight].”
Of course, none of that history really matters to a coach or a goaltender who have never experienced losing in this building. Give up a power-play goal in the opening three minutes and get over it, which is precisely what the Flyers did on this night en route to a 3-2 overtime victory (see observations).
“That has to be the best game we’ve played,” Flyers interim head coach Scott Gordon said. “A little bit of a slow start but nothing we can’t recover from.”
Like a pot full of chili on a cold winter night, the Flyers’ six-game winning streak has had just about everything in it. The first two games featured comebacks from 2-0 deficits. Huge performances from a pair of goalies who weren’t with this team when the season started. And in Boston, the league’s worst power play got the job done in overtime, when the Flyers had dropped their previous five in OT.
“That’s huge for us,” Carter Hart, who won his fifth straight game, said. “I think that was the best, full complete game I’ve seen us play.”
Now, we can say this Flyers winning streak has some real teeth to it. It’s coming together at a time when things appeared to be falling apart.
“I think it’s confidence,” Giroux said. “I think when you get a couple of wins, you start feeling better about yourself.”
That’s two wins against a quality Boston team in the past 16 days. Afterward, Jakub Voracek held off showering while he patiently waited for David Pastrnak, his fellow countryman, to meet him outside the locker room.
Except Pastrnak never showed. He took his two goals and went home for the night.
Right now, it seems even the big, bad Bruins want no part of this Flyers team.
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