James van Riemsdyk’s playoff mentor makes a lot of sense

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While Martin Brodeur doesn’t think very much of James van Riemsdyk’s skills, his monster play in Game 1 has everyone thinking back to how well he did last year.

While it’s just one game, seeing van Riemsdyk come up big in a postseason game again has everyone wondering if he’s got a “playoff mode” he activates and becomes a force of nature. As it turns out, he’s just got the right people to look up to when it comes to stepping up in big moments.

Sarah Baicker of CSNPhilly.com finds out there’s another big playoff performer in the Flyers’ room van Riemsdyk draws inspiration from.

“I always love playing those big games,” van Riemsdyk said. “I’ve had a lot of great players to learn from. I remember my first year, I was talking to Danny Briere a little bit about what to expect in the playoffs, and he went out there and put out an absolute show out there, taking us to the Cup finals there.

“And I think I learned a lot from him and that definitely helped me in the next go-round.”

Drawing on Briere to inspire your play in the postseason is about as good of a pick as it gets. Briere’s been nothing but huge since joining the Flyers and he’s more than made his mark each year in the playoffs in Philly. It’s no wonder that the two found a way to pair up on yesterday’s game-winning goal.