PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ Maybe Derian Hatcher will play his shifts safe the next time the Flyers have a three-goal lead in the third period.
One big hit, one costly penalty from the defenseman, nearly turned the series around.
Instead, Martin Biron saved the Flyers again.
Biron stopped 32 shots and the Flyers scored three goals in the second period to beat the Montreal Canadiens 3-2, taking a 2-1 lead in their second-round series.
"I thought I was going to get sick," Hatcher said.
Well, then he felt like the rest of the Flyers fans who watched on TV the same way he did in the locker room. Hatcher drove his right arm into the center of defenseman Francis Bouillon's back and slammed him into the glass with the Flyers up 3-0. Bouillon, who wears a visor, was cut near the corner of his right eye.
Hatcher was whistled for 5 minutes for boarding and a game misconduct, ending his night. That was all the opportunity Montreal needed to make its first serious run at Biron. It was nearly enough to tie the score.
"Your first reaction is you just hope the team can get through it," Hatcher said.
Tomas Plekanec quickly scored a power-play goal off a scrum in front of the net to make it 3-1. The goal was reviewed, but the replay showed the puck was over the line before the net became dislodged.
Saku Koivu was stopped on a breakaway by Biron's poke check in the first period, but he scored on the power play in the third to pull Montreal to 3-2.
"It got a little scary on the power play," Biron said.
Hatcher felt awful.
"Watching the last 15 minutes was a lot more draining than actually playing the game," Hatcher said. "I feel mentally exhausted right now."
The Flyers killed the rest of the penalty and Biron quickly reverted to the form of the first two periods, when he stopped shots in all kinds of ways. He made 17 of his saves in the third period while the Flyers took a measly two shots on goal.
No wonder he was serenaded again from the stands with chants of "Mar-ty! Mar-ty! Mar-ty!"
That's a sound the Flyers want to hear all the way to the Stanley Cup.
"It's fun when they chant your name," Biron said. "They challenge the guys to play better."
The Canadiens outshot Philadelphia 34-12.
"It seems that we're being tested right now," Koivu said. "I don't think we played as well tonight as we did in the second game, but still we were able to put a lot of pucks on net and create a lot of chances. That's a positive thing, but at the same time when you outshoot your opponent, you're hoping to get the win."
Mike Richards, R.J. Umberger and Scottie Upshall all scored goals on the first six shots of the second against 20-year-old Carey Price.
Price never made it to the end, yanked at the start of the third period for Jaroslav Halak. Price will get another shot in Game 4 on Wednesday in Philadelphia.
"Cary has proven in the past that he can bounce back and come back really strong," said Montreal coach Guy Carbonneau. "I know he can come back and play really strong."
After a scoreless first period, the Flyers made the most of their limited shots in the second.
Upshall fired a wrister past Price 7:04 into the period and another sold-out crowd roared in approval. One fan pressed a sign that read "The Price Is Wrong" against the glass.
Richards made it 2-0 when his short-handed goal bounced off Price's glove. Lasse Kukkonen was in the penalty box for holding the stick, putting the Flyers a man down. Who else but Richards would give them a lift? He scored five short-handed goals in the regular season, which led the Flyers and was tied for third in the NHL. Richards picked off the puck to score the unassisted goal.
Then the Flyers got what turned out to be a needed goal.
Jeff Carter poked the puck off Price, and Umberger, who briefly left in the third period after a collision, one-timed the rebound for the Flyers second goal in 3:07.
Umberger was fine when he skated on the ice for being chosen first star of the game.
The series turned testy in Game 2 when Tom Kostopoulos threw a blindside punch at Flyers defenseman Kimmo Timonen. Flyers coach John Stevens called the punch "cheap" and Richards labeled it "gutless."
Carbonneau said Timonen deserved the hit because he smirked at the Canadiens after a Flyers goal.
The first blows in this one came late in the first period, when Flyers forward Steve Downie tripped Price, who had strayed out from the crease, from behind with his stick. Downie was briefly pinned against the boards by two Canadiens and soon players from both teams came flying down to the corner and got involved in the skirmish.
The Flyers crowd, which booed "O Canada," started chanting "U.S.A!" ”U.S.A!"
Biron, a Canadian native, said the boos bothered him just as much as when the Montreal fans booed the "Star Spangled Banner."
"I don't like it, but you can't control 20,000 people," he said.
There were several other mior tussles, then Hatcher's slam in the third.
Copyright 2008 The Associated Press.