It's a delicate art, celebrating a personal "Hell yeah!" moment in professional sports. Some athletes, like Chase Utley and Roy Halladay, react to their on-the-field accomplishments with the less-is-more approach of a seasoned tax attorney: a blank stare, a barely perceptible head nod, maybe a facial expression that looks like the start of indigestion.
Others turn to theatrics to drive a crowd's energy to a fever pitch. Picture Jeremiah Trotter slamming an invisible ax into the turf after a big tackle, or Brian Dawkins doing his "Weapon X" thing after making a wide receiver seriously consider a career change.
Rare is the athlete who can craft a celebratory move that's just right — the perfect blend of whimsy and childlike joy.
We're talking, of course, about Flyers forward Danny Briere.
Briere's signature move — the bent knee, the uppercut through the air — likely skates like an orange-and-black specter through the nightmares of opposing goalies, especially in the playoffs, during which he has scored 108 points in 106 career games.
The move was on display in all of its graceful wonder in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Eastern Conference Semifinals, when Briere scored twice, including the game winner in overtime, on New Jersey Devils goalie Martin Brodeur.
So where did it come from?
Is it a family trademark that's been passed on from generations of Brieres?
Was it taught to a young Danny Briere by a mythical forest creature in Quebec?
Eh, not so much.
"I've started it when I was about 15," Briere said earlier this week.
"I remember the first time I did it, it was an all-star game. And after that for some reason, I just kept doing it, and now it's natural. I don't even think about it."
Briere said he's been amused to see the move imitated by others over the years — first by his children, and later by younger hockey players.
It has even been adopted by some of his teammates.
"Matt Read is doing the exact same thing," Briere said. "It's pretty cool."