May 3, 2011, 12:09 AM EDT
A day after it was announced that a US Navy SEALS strike force had killed Osama bin Laden, a moment made even more memorable for Philadelphia sports fans when the crowd at Citizens Bank Park chanted ‘U-S-A’ as word spread throughout the stadium, the best players on the ice in the Flyers-Bruins game 2 showdown were American-born. James van Riemsdyk was on the attack all night, scoring both Flyers goals, but Tim Thomas stopped everything else for the Bruins.
The night began on a patriotic note, with Lauren Hart joining Kate Smith in the customary Flyers’ playoff tradition of singing God Bless America. The song always brings out the goosebumps, but tonight, with everyone anticipating it since late Sunday night, the life of the song was never more apparent. After the game, which unfortunately ended in a 3-2 OT win for the Bruins, JVR was wearing the hat seen to the above-right in the locker room. On the CSN postgame broadcast, Ian Laperierre immediately pointed out that the hat represents the Navy SEALS; specifically, it is the symbol of the Navy SEALS Special Warfare Development Group (DEVGRU), another name for Team Six, the unit responsible for Sunday’s strike on bin Laden.
After the jump, a video compilation we requested that our CSN colleagues put together to feature van Riemsdyk’s amazing night, which drew chants of J-V-R from the Wells Fargo Center crowd.
Big thanks to Tom for putting that together so fast.
If only JVR had scored a third goal in OT… We couldn’t have asked for a more perfect story than that. As it stands though, the Flyers are in a 2-0 hole with the series heading to Boston. With 52 saves, Tim Thomas earned his team a huge road win, and the Flyers will have their hands full with him in game 3 and beyond.
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