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Brian Boucher’s run as the starting goalie ended in Game 5 when he sprained the MCL in his left knee. That opened up the job for Michael Leighton, who led the Flyers to Game 6 of the Stanley Cup finals. But Boucher is back in net, for now, after the Flyers used a three-goalie carousel in a seven-game first round vs. the Sabres.

Boucher, as well, brushed off the significance of last year’s upset.

“Last year plays no role into this year. This is a whole new year,” he said. “There are new faces in both locker rooms.”

New and old Flyers say they can win again _ just maybe save the rallies for another day.

“Hopefully, we don’t spot them a three-game lead again,” Briere said. “That would be a lot easier.”

Sometimes, that win-or-else mentality fuels a postseason run. The Flyers won Game 6 in overtime in Buffalo and returned home to rout the Sabres in Game 7 to complete yet another series comeback, this one from down 3-2.

“I don’t believe in momentum in the playoffs,” Flyers coach Peter Laviolette said. “I believe in desperation.”

The Bruins had their share of desperation in the first round against Montreal. Boston rallied from a 2-0 hole in the series, a two-goal deficit in Game 4, and won a Game 7 in which they lost two leads. The Boston franchise had never won a playoff series after trailing 0-2.

The Bruins were also the first team to ever win a seven-game series without scoring a power-play goal. They went 0 for 21 vs. the Canadiens. The Flyers struggled with the man advantage as well, before scoring two power-play goals in Game 7 vs. Buffalo.

“There are lots of things that pop up and catch your attention at different times,” Laviolette said. “Certainly, power plays can win series, and penalty kills can win series. I guess that just proves not to say that it can’t win.”

The Bruins had four players score multiple goals in their series, but none who matched James van Riemsdyk’s four and Briere’s six for the Flyers.

Thomas saved 93 percent of his shots in the first round and has a huge edge over the veteran Boucher.

But this series isn’t as much about how teams fare on power plays and shots on goal. It could be about how the teams handle questions and quiet doubts that fill every series.

If Boston takes a 2-0 lead, the Flyers will shrug it off. Hey, they won from that spot before. The Bruins will be bombarded with questions about how can they be sure they won’t cough up a lead.

“It doesn’t really have a factor on this year’s series, except for the fact we haven’t forgotten about it because (the media) remind us day in and day out,” Thornton said, “And I’m sure you will for the next two weeks.”