After a lackluster effort in Game Three, you knew the Flyers, and especially Chris Pronger, would come out strong on Saturday. After a minus-3 performance in Game Three, Pronger was a rock in Game Four.
He played a game-high 31:07 on 42 shifts and set up Philadelphia’s second goal with a brilliant pass to Ville Leino.
Stamping Their Ticket
The Flyers have played in the Finals seven times in their history and on six of those seven occasions, they have won the previous series on home ice.
The only time they clinched a trip to the Cup Finals on the road happened to be against the Canadiens in 1987. After coming home with a 3-1 series lead, the Flyers lost Game Five at home before returning to Montreal for the famous pregame brawl. Philadelphia rallied from a 2-0 deficit for a 4-3 win at the Forum and a date with Wayne Gretzky and the Oilers.
It Won’t be Easy
During these playoffs, Montreal is 5-0 in elimination games and 4-9 in all others.
However, no team has ever won three Game Sevens in one playoff season and that’s what the Canadiens face if they plan to get past the Flyers.
The Flyers are 18-2 in series when leading 3-1, but are just 13-7 in Game Five with a two-game lead.
Game Five Notes
Against Montreal, the Flyers are 2-2 in Game 5s, including two straight wins.
Philadelphia has won seven of its last eight playoff games against Montreal, including four straight at home. The Flyers have outscored the Habs 16-4 at the Wachovia Center in the last four playoff games dating back to 2008.
Both Danny Briere and Simon Gagne were kept off the scoresheet in Game Four, halting a seven-game point streak for Gagne. Briere went pointless in the two games in Montreal after having his name on the scoresheet in 10 of his previous 11 games.
Michael Leighton has not allowed a goal in 15 of the 20 periods he has played in the playoffs.
Leighton is the first goalie in Flyers history to have three shutouts in one playoff round. If he can somehow fashion another shutout in Game Five, he would tie the franchise record for shutouts in one playoff season, held by Bernie Parent.
In their 101-year history, Montreal had never been blanked three times in one playoff series
The Flyers have a chance to advance to Finals tonight on what would have been Pelle Lindbergh’s 51st birthday.