I watched a hockey game on Thursday night featuring Sergei Bobrovsky, Radko Gudas, and Shayne Gostisbehere. Three Flyers legends.

Sarcasm on that second sentence, but total truth when I say it was the best hockey game I’ve watched in years. Four overtime periods with two great goaltenders, skill, speed, technical prowess, and everything we have not seen in this town for a long time now. Maybe Jonesy and Danny Briere will bring us back to that.

For all the talk of what the Sixers are missing in Jimmy Butler, there’s a dark and humorous twist in which Bob has been just as good for the Panthers over the last few playoff games. Just look at this stat:

That’s incredible. Bobrovsky had 63 saves on 65 shot attempts, logging one hour and 39 minutes of ice time. That follows the series-clinching overtime win against Toronto, when he spent 75 minutes on the ice and saved 50 of 52 shots. In the Carolina game, he had 34 saves in those four overtime periods, stopping everything thrown his way after the Hurricanes pulled level in the third period.

Bob has a .927 save percentage in these playoffs, giving up 29 goals on 395 shots. That, combined with Matthew Tkachuk and Carter Verhaeghe lighting it up, has the Panthers three games away from the Stanley Cup Finals.

Thing with Bobrovsky is that his situation was a lot more clear than the Jimmy Butler stuff, or anything else the Sixers navigated these past few years. Bob was young during his short Philly tenure, and Ed Snider told Paul Holmgren to get the best goaltender available, so they brought in Ilya Bryzgalov on a long-term deal. Bobrovsky became the backup, which he was not interested in, and Snider was quoted in 2014, saying this:

“Then, the problem is, not only did we make a mistake on the long-term contract (Bryzgalov received), but Bobrovksy’s a young guy and he told Paul, ‘As soon as my contract’s up I’m out of here,'” Snider said Saturday. “He wasn’t going to re-sign with us. He was going to go back to Russia (or) he was going to go with another team, but he wasn’t going to be a second-string goalie for the rest of his life. So that was also a problem, and Paul made the best of the situation.”

Of course, the funny thing here is that Bobrovsky wasn’t even the Florida starter going into the playoffs. That was another Flyers legend, Alex Lyon. And Florida was not exactly lighting the NHL on fire in the regular season, so they hit on something here and kept riding it. Nobody had them beating the Bruins, yet here they are, having knocked out both Boston and Toronto en route to the conference finals.

Should the Flyers have kept Sergei Bobrovsky? 610-632-0975, your calls after the break.