"The Briere"

by Ryan

Just after this

and before this

was something that summed up every single emotion involved with this home and home series.

Miller did “the Briere.”

You know exactly what I’m talking about. That little “slide on the ice fist pump” thing. Miller did that after he stoned Jeff Carter, rolling over to knock the puck off his stick juuuuuuust enough to end the game.

To me, that is the highlight of the season right there. We went into Philly and robbed two points from them. Regardless of the missed chances and non-calls and douchebaggery that took place, the fact of the matter is we tied the game with nine seconds left, then survived a frantic overtime period to win in the Ales Kotalik Delight shootout.

If that isn’t the prototype of a huge weekend, you just aren’t a hockey fan.

The thing that gets me is that in this game it seemed Danny Briere really became a Flyer. Yeah, Friday he was wearing orange and black and taking shots on Ryan Miller, but tonight he became everything we actually hate about Philadelphia.

Anyone who has watched Briere closely over the past few years knows his game. He gets rattled when played physically and not given penalty calls against. It happened twice alone last year, when he speared two Capitals, getting a game misconduct on the latter occasion.

I’ll be the first one to admit that I loved his game when in Buffalo, but a realist knows that every player has holes. Briere’s knock was that when he gets frustrated he takes penalties, or at the very least acts undisciplined. This gets him off his game, and he gets frazzled very, very easily.

When he was “giving Jaro the business” tonight, you knew it was a different player you were dealing with. Danny Briere is no longer ours. He is still the same player, but that warm and fuzzy feeling associated with him before just isn’t there anymore.

Does it mean we should boo? No, not yet. But as far as I’m concerned, he is most certainly “one of them” now.

So it goes.

The good news is the result of this series: four points. We went 2-0 against the Flyers, overcame tough injuries, and mocked a player with something to prove against a former team. This team is still in the mire of mediocrity in the Eastern Conference right now, but it’s hard not to call them good.

Being at this point at Christmas, after all the bad games and frustrating performances, I’d say I’m more than okay with this.