They look like an unlikely pair - Scott Hartnell with shoulder-length, frizzy red hair and a Grizzly Adams beard; and Danny Briere, the ashen-faced choirboy.
But when they're on skates and playing on the same line, they might as well be twins because each seems to know what the other is thinking.
Hartnell and Briere had plenty of influence on the Flyers' 4-3 overtime win over the Chicago Blackhawks on Wednesday night in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Finals at the Wachovia Center.
Hartnell had his fourth multi-point game of the playoffs with a goal and assist. Briere scored his team-leading 11th goal and had an assist on Claude Giroux's goal that trimmed the Blackhawks' lead in the series to two games to one.
Hartnell made the pass of the night on Briere's power-play goal that gave the Flyers the game's first goal with 5 minutes, 2 seconds remaining in the first period.
Toppling over from a hit, Hartnell seemed to be in no position to find Briere. But before he hit the ice, Hartnell somehow got control of the puck and put it right on Briere's blade. It was the equivalent of a behind-the-back, blind pass in basketball with someone slamming you in the back with a stick.
Hartnell got possession of the puck after a blast from the point by Braydon Coburn dropped from the glove of goalie Antti Niemi.
"I don't know if [Niemi] was celebrating the save he made, but it popped out of his glove and I just tried to put it in that open area," Hartnell said. "I knew there wouldn't be anybody there, and it went on Danny's tape and he doesn't miss many when he's got a wide-open net."
Briere said such plays are the product of familiarity with one another.
"That's part of the chemistry you develop when you play a lot with the same guys . . . ," Briere said. "He knew I was going to be backdoor."
There were two delays on the goal that gave the Flyers a 2-1 lead. The question was whether the puck had trickled across the line at the corner of the net after it slithered through goalie Antti Niemi's legs.
The red light didn't go on immediately. The wait to find out lasted 1:42 because there was no stoppage of play.
When the video review clearly showed the puck cross the line, the goal was awarded to Chris Pronger, although a replay showed Hartnell had knocked down Pronger's drive from the point. As the third period was about to begin, the goal was awarded to Hartnell.
This has been a postseason of redemption for Hartnell after a disappointing regular season. The Flyers were counting on the winger to give them 30 goals or so, as he did last season. But Hartnell managed only 14 goals and was virtually invisible on too many nights.
"He's been excellent all through the playoffs," Flyers coach Peter Laviolette said. "Especially the last four, five games, you're really starting to notice him physically."
Hartnell went without a goal the first eight games of the playoffs. A goal in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against Boston got him going. He was an integral part of the Game 7 win over the Bruins when he scored a goal and added an assist. He had a goal and two assists in the 6-5 Game 1 loss at Chicago.
"It's been a fun ride here so far," said Hartnell, who has 13 points on five goals and eight assists in the playoffs. He was already looking toward Friday's Game 4.
"We want to take it to them the same way next game and tie this series up going back to Chicago," he said. "We've come back from this deficit before, and we've got to keep going."