Continued from page 1

“Mentally, I think that’s the easiest way to be prepared,” Flyers forward Jakub Voracek said. “You know when it’s the second round of the playoffs, you try to get going, but [the Devils] didn’t play for three days, and I think they had a little advantage in the first period. Since the second period, we took over the game, and we played well.”

That’s an adjustment the Caps could not make a year ago, losing control of their series against the Lightning after a couple of losses at home. But it’s impossible to predict how a team will react to time off.

Peter Laviolette didn’t know. Asked repeatedly in the past week what was going to happen, the Flyers‘ coach lacked a definitive answer.

“I answered I don’t know because the truth of the matter is you don’t really know. You don’t know whether your team is going to come out and be jumping or whether it’s going to take a bit,” Laviolette said. “And you ask, would you rather have the time off or would you rather get right back into it? I think the time off was good for us, and now that we’re through it and we’re able to come out on the winning side, I’m glad it’s past us.”