The Flyers were a few hours away from attempting to complete a historic 3-0 series comeback, although the weight of Friday's Game 7 against the Boston Bruins at TD Garden didn't seem to be much of a burden.
"You mean our fifth Game 7 here?" Flyers coach Peter Laviolette said joked after his team's optional skate. "We are in a familiar spot. It's really our fifth time we've been faced with elimination."
Laviolette, of course, was referring to his team's shootout victory over the New York Rangers in their final regular-season game to gain entry into the playoffs, along with their last three games in this second-round series.
The Flyers would join the 1942 Toronto Maple Leafs and the 1975 New York Islanders as the only teams to come back to win a best-of-seven series after dropping the first three games. Forward Scott Hartnell all but said his Flyers team will be the third.
"All the history is on the line," Hartnell said. "We are excited to make history and move onto the next round. The winner of this round has home-ice [in the conference finals]."
Laviolette said he's not about to change what he's been telling his team for some time now.
"Everything stays the same," he said.
That apparently includes the Flyers lineup. Simon Gagne, who looked to be stunned after he went down briefly during Game 6 and didn't skate on Thursday, said he's not going to miss tonight's game.
"I don't know where that came from," said Gagne, missed four games with a broken toe before returning in time for Game 4. "I just didn't practice. Give me time between games to heal. I will play tonight and that's what I'm here for. It's getting better."
Laviolette said he'd be learning hard on his top-flight players like Mike Richards, Daniel Briere, Gagne and Chris Pronger, not that he won't take contributions elsewhere.
"If we are going to be successful, our entire team will have to rely on each other," Laviolette said. "It'll be a team effort. If we go out and play the way we need to play in order to be successful tonight, the best thing that can be said tomorrow morning is, 'What a terrific team effort that was.' That's how we'll find success tonight. It won't be because of one player."
"We did all of the stuff we need to do to prepare for tonight, so we're giving our guys an opportunity to rest and to come ready to play," Julien said. "It's as simple as that. ... There's not much you don't know about the other team, so come ready to play."