Danny Briere thought he had won Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the New Jersey Devils before he actually did win it.
Briere had a goal waved off after he kicked it past Marty Brodeur in overtime on the power play; but at 4:36 of the extra session, Briere notched his seventh of the playoffs and second of the afternoon to give the Flyers the Game 1 win.
"I was telling myself after, 'Let's not think about it. You can't do anything about it anymore. Let's move on. Let's refocus,'" Briere told NBC about the no-goal.
Goalie interference on James van Riemsdyk? Nah. The overhead made it look worse than it was.
A few observations on the Flyers' 4-3 Game 1 win:
• Philadelphia came out with layers of rust in this one, going down 1-0 to the Devils and getting outplayed in their own zone dramatically. When they regained their equilibrium, it wasn't close: The Flyers controlled the Devils' zone, fired at Marty Brodeur in waves and the Devils' offense was reduced to counterpunching
• Ilya Bryzgalov and Brodeur had their lowlights — Bryz on a soft goal to Petr Sykora, Brodeur' on a misplay that led to James van Riemsdyk's second-period goal — but they also both had some really solid moments between the pipes. Bryzgalov kept the Flyers in this one until they found their game; Brodeur made 14 saves in the third period to earn the OT.
• Ilya Kovalchuk has to be playing hurt. No shots on goal, playing 21:20, and a minus-2, including the misfired shot that led to Danny Briere's breakaway goal in the second (after a bad Peter Harrold pinch).
• As I mentioned in the preview, faceoffs were a concern for the Devils. The Flyers won 55 percent of them, and set up Claude Giroux's third-period goal with an offensive zone win. I also mentioned the Flyers were going to expose the Devils' blue line; go back and watch Marek Zidlicky in the overtime, and consider it exposed.
• Finally, the Flyers are already scary. If van Riemsdyk is getting his Briere on in the playoffs, they're going to be downright frightening.