The Canaries clawed their way out of the bottom three and leap-frogged over both Barnsley and Nottingham Forest by virtue of their better goal difference on another topsy-turvy afternoon in the Championship survival race.
In fairness to City, their 2-0 win over Watford was relatively scare-free once Danny Rose's bizarre own goal had set Norwich on their way – Will Hoskins slammed a first-half 25-yarder against the bar, but that was basically it.
At the other end Alan Lee rattled an upright and Jason Shackell saw one header cleared off the line, another hit the bar en route to Gary Doherty heading the decisive goal home seven minutes from time.
With a ten-man Forest clinging onto a point with that 0-0 draw at Sheffield United, all eyes now turned to Barnsley as they lost 3-1 at home to Swansea City and duly found themselves bang in the mix again. They do, of course, have one game in hand – against Coventry City in eight days time.
At least, events are now back in Norwich's hands – as a delighted Gunn confirmed afterwards.
“Certain sections of the media had seen us drop into the bottom three and were writing us off,” said the City boss, mentioning no names.
“But the result today has given us all hope – and it's in our own hands. Three massive performances and the level of commitment that we reached today and no-one can take that [place] away from us.
“But we're going to have to match, if not better, the level that we attained today to make sure that we're in the Championship next season.”
The fact that today's results found Barnsley below Norwich in the table helped the manager's mood.
“It's not only them,” he said. “There are other teams. It's not only them.
“Forest are in the mix; Plymouth are still in the mix; Blackpool are still in the mix. And it was a great result for Southampton; and they have to play other teams in and around us. And I'd expect them to battle away through to the end of the season.”
So, expect more twists and turns to come was the manager's message having sent City's biggest crowd of the season home with a smile on their faces.
Lady Luck certainly smiled on the Canaries come the 15th minute as Rose ended Jon Otsemobor's surging run forward with a stretching tackle on the edge of his own box that merely succeeded in lobbing the ball high over a stranded keeper and into the far corner.
As fortunate as City's opening strike was, it was all they deserved after a storming start which almost saw David Mooney sneak in the game's opening goal within the first 20 seconds as he robbed Mike Williamson only for Scott Loach to hurriedly block at his near post.
By rights Mooney should have extended Norwich's lead after 18 minutes when Sammy Clingan's teasing free-kick invited a strong, headed finish from little more than eight yards out.
Alas, the on-loan Reading striker did no more than glance the ball off his forehead and the ball bounced down and away the wrong side of Loach's left-hand upright.
It wasn't wholly one way traffic. Will Hoskins would thump the crossbar from all of 25-yards out with a spectacular effort just before the half-hour mark, while Jason Shackell repaid his loan fee in an instant when he reacted superbly to whip a Tommy Smith cross off Hoskins' toes.
But that said – second goal apart – it was pretty much all a Carrow Road full-house could have wished for ahead of the interval. And with Barnsley slipping 2-0 behind at home to Swansea and Forest going down to ten men at Bramall Lane, the Canaries were heading in the right direction.
After the break and it was all edge of the seats of the stuff.
The tireless Lee came closest to making things safe with a storming run and equal drive that shuddered Loach's right upright. Jason Shackell almost capped another commanding afternoon with a powerful, downward header from a Clingan corner that Jon Harley just managed to knee off the line with Loach long beaten.
The two would pair up again seven minutes from the end to deliver the game's crucial goal. This time Shackell was denied by the crossbar. Fortunately, the rebound fell straight onto Doherty's waiting forehead and from eight-yards out he made the game safe.
Whether he made City safe is for the next three games to decide.
One thing is, at least, certain. The Canaries won't be going down at Portman Road.