Philadelphia Flyers are a Game Seven Win Away from Making History

Bleacher ReportAnalyst IMay 14, 2010

PHILADELPHIA - MAY 12: Goaltender Michael Leighton #49 and Kimmo Timonen #44 of the Philadelphia Flyers celebrate their victory over the Boston Bruins in Game Six of the Eastern Conference Semifinals during the 2010 NHL Stanley Cup Finals at the Wachovia Center on May 12, 2010 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Flyers defeated the Bruins 2-1. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Six years ago, Boston was celebrating one of the greatest comebacks in sports history as the Boston Red Sox became only the third team in professional sports history to win a playoff series after losing the first three games.

The Red Sox came back to win four straight games against the Yankees en route of winning their first World Series title since 1918, snapping an 86-year championship drought.

That was 2004, this is 2010.

With Wednesday night's 2-1 win in Game Six against the Bruins, the Flyers have inched closer to cementing their names in the record books as only the fourth team in sports history to win a playoff series after losing the first three games.

By the way, can you name the other two franchises that accomplished aforementioned feat? The 1942 Toronto Maple Leafs and the 1975 New York Islanders—who lost to the Orange and Black in the Stanley Cup Finals, just sayin'.

It also means that the Flyers are one win away from reaching the Eastern Conference Finals, and five wins away from getting to the Stanley Cup for the first time since 1997, which is pretty remarkable considering they needed a shootout win in the last game to clinch a playoff berth.

Let's not get too far ahead of ourselves because the job is far from over as 60 more minutes stand in the way of facing the Montreal Canadiens for the right to represent the Eastern Conference in the Stanley Cup Finals.

The odds are still stacked up against the Flyers as shown by the fact that only three times, twice in hockey, has a team come back from down 0-3 in the playoffs, but this is familiar territory for this group.

Going through so much during the regular season, from going through seven goalies to a coaching change, the Flyers have gone through every kind of adversity you could possibly throw at them, and here they are, five wins away from getting to the championship round.

But they have to win one more game in order to continue onto the Conference Finals; one more hurdle to jump, and that is winning a Game Seven on the road, which this year hasn't been much of a chore.

The Canadiens won twice on the road in Game Seven's in the first two rounds while the Detroit Red Wings clinched their first-round series win over the Coyotes in Phoenix.

Good omen or just a coincidence?

Home-ice advantage is greatly overrated, especially in hockey. If you were to poll the players, I would think at least close to 50 percent would say they'd rather play on the road in this scenario.

All the pressure is on the home team to win in these situations as they're playing in front of their own fans, in their own building. In the Bruins' case, they're on the verge of one of the biggest collapses in sports history. I'm sure that won't go over easy with the Boston faithful.

The Flyers must improve the power play, continue to pepper Boston netminder Tuuka Rask, and play a well-rounded game. That means discipline, they cannot be on the penalty-kill all night; you want to be aggressive, but you don't want to go too far.

If the Flyers come out taking penalties, this thing could get ugly quick, but if they come out, stay out of the box, and draw penalties, Philadelphia will become only the fourth franchise in professional sports history to comeback from down 0-3 in the playoffs.

For more Philadelphia sports coverage, please go to my blog: The Broad Street Scoop.