They looked like a team that was simply going to sweep a highly favored opponent into iced oblivion. This was going to be a crowing achievement to be savored, no matter what happened next during this postseason.
And then the Penguins happy feet crushed the Flyers like a bunch of orange bugs.
Before every Philadelphia fan begins to lineup on both sides of the Walt Whitman bridge, or veer to the Ben Franklin gangplank in order to avoid a delay, they should calm down.
It is very unlikely that Peter Laviolette will allow his team to simply fold three more times.
Any thoughts about Ilya Bryzgalov losing his confidence after that debacle would also seem to be somewhat misguided, as Sergei Bobrovsky was lit up as well. 'Bryz' and 'Bob' both saw 18 shots and were only able to stop 13 of them.
The porous team defense that was on display at the Wells Fargo Center was historic, with many digitally geeky references sure to be spelled out within the next day, or so.
As the 2010 Boston Bruins know, not closing out a team when you can and then allowing them to hang around tightens the noose at every step.
The idea that losing in Pittsburgh would then allow you to preferably win the series at home isn't smart.
The Flyers have played very well in the western part of Pennsylvania so far this season, so possibly those Friday night lights will look just right. But, Game 4 was eerily similar to the type of postseason effort the 'Bullies' put forth in the spring of 2011.
It still seems hard to imagine that a squad that plays such a run-and-gun offensive system could beat a much stronger defensive opponent, like the New York Rangers or New Jersey Devils, in a later playoff round. But, that is another concern for another day. For now, win this series and then come what may.
Sean O'Brien is based in the Philadelphia region. He has written professionally for over two decades and is currently a Featured Contributor for Yahoo! You can follow him on Twitter @SeanyOB and also read his daily Sports Blog: Insight.
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