Most of us thought that the battle had been going for quite some time, and that most, if not all of the ships left by the time the E-E were in the condition in which we saw the Defiant, or worse. Then, the tired, haggard remaining Captains see the shiny, undamaged Enterprise come sailing in with full shields and weapons blazing. Seconds later Picard is on the horn with plan. After hours (days?) of combat with no real result, darn straight they'll follow it.