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ECSF Game 3: Seriously, a must win

Eastern Conference Semifinals, Game 3
#6 Boston Bruins at #7 Philadelphia Flyers
Bruins lead series, 2-0
Wachovia Center - 7:00 PM ET - Philadelphia, PA
Radio: 610 WIP (internet stream here), XM 205, SIRIUS 220
Get the Boston perspective at Stanley Cup of Chowder

We've thrown the term must-win around quite often this season, but tonight at home in Game 3, it really is true. This is a must win game. If they lose on home ice tonight, the season is effectively over. Let's just get that in our heads for a second.

And with that said, the Flyers have the advantage tonight. These two teams have been rather even all series long, even though the Flyers have yet to hold a lead and have played generally poor all series long. That should all change now that we're playing in Philadelphia.

The Flyers can get the matchups they want, but most importantly, they'll have the extra jump in their step that the confidence of home ice brings them. They've been a very solid home ice team all season long, and that's only improved in the playoffs.

The story lines have all been beaten to death in the last 36 hours or so: the Flyers need to win faceoffs, need to get tangible contributions from the guys up front not named Mike Richards or Danny Briere, need to score on the power play, etc. Hopefully solving match up problems at home goes a long way towards giving other guys better looks, but the biggest part of it is not double shifting guys like Scott Hartnell and Claude Giroux.

These guys had nothing left in the tank at the end of the game on Monday, and hopefully Peter Laviolette decides to play guys like Andreas Nodl a bit more. We're not asking for 15-plus minutes for guys like him, but between seven and ten or twelve would be nice to see.

If you're going to the game, leave right now. Phils game tonight, the Sports Complex will be a mob scene. And please, don't run on the ice. You'll get tased. Game thread will be up at 6 PM. Go Flyers. Win.

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