Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
There seems little doubt now that the Wings will capture their fourth Cup in 11 years sometime in the next 7-10 days, with the number of games it will take them to finish off the punchless Penguins seemingly the only uncertainty.
“Oh, we can play better,” said Detroit head coach Mike Babcock.
The shame of it all, unfortunately, is that it appears unlikely that this confrontation will meet the promise it once held, the possibility that it would evolve into the kind of thrilling series that would excite traditional hockey fans and make the greater North American sports market sit up and marvel at the NHL’s brand of entertainment.
from Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,
History suggests the Penguins have very little hope of winning the Stanley Cup this season.
Reality suggests they have absolutely none, unless they can figure out how to make some radical changes during the rest of the series.
Start doing some dramatically different stuff, like scoring a goal every now and then.
from Jim Kelley at Sportsnet,
Let’s do the analysis in assembly-line fashion.
- Osgood: he hasn’t had to make many saves, difficult or otherwise, but he is clearly in the collective minds of the Penguins. The Pens likely think now that they can’t beat him simply because they have to work so hard just to get the puck to him and once there, they can’t even get their shots away let alone test the veteran netminder….
- Detroit’s overall team speed: This is difficult to explain, but the so-called “old” Wings have all the energy in the game.
from Bob McKenzie of TSN,
The post-game comments from the Penguins revolved around obstruction and Chris Osgood’s flopping but the real story was that they failed to mount a forecheck in Game 2. Very early in the first period, it became very apparent they weren’t going to be able to get it done because of a number of factors.
First, the Penguins’ dump-ins weren’t good enough because Osgood’s puck handling allowed him to retrieve many of the pucks and set them up for his defence.
Secondly, the Red Wings’ defence is very mobile, skilled and smart and they get back very quickly.
from E.J. Hradek of ESPN,
The Wings did a brilliant job of limiting the Penguins’ attack in Game 2. Detroit held Pittsburgh without a shot in the first 12 minutes of the game. For those scoring at home (and even if you were just watching the game), the Pens managed just eight shots in a 52-minute span from the beginning of the second period in Game 1 through the eight-minute mark of the first period in Game 2. The Penguins didn’t get an even-strength shot until the second period. The problem is simple—Detroit manages to outnumber you just about everywhere on the ice.
“We play a different team than we played in the first three rounds,” Sykora said. “It’s like there’s nothing out there. For us, the key is to play the way they are — get that first goal, get the power play going and then shut it down and play good defensively. That’s exactly what they’re doing. It’s nothing special they’re doing out there. They got the first goal and then they shut it down.”
more on the game from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail…
Q. You had a conversation with Malkin about him being the leader in this game. How do you explain him having zero shots in this game?
COACH MICHEL THERRIEN: It’s really tough to generate offense against that team. They’re good on obstruction. It’s going to be tough to generate any type of offense, if the rules remain the same. So it’s the first time we’re facing a team that the obstruction is there, and we’re having a hard time skating to take away ice.
We took two penalties tonight on the goalie. We never take penalty to the goalie in the playoff. I’ll tell you something, I reviewed those plays. He’s a good actor. He goes to players, and he’s diving. Took away our power play. Got to get focused. I know our players are frustrated right now. It’s tough to play the game. But Osgood did the same thing against Dallas under Ribeiro.
Our team never go to goalie. We never did it. And we don’t target the goalie. But this is, want to talk about experience, he goes to players, and he knows what to do, I guess.
From the LA Times,
The Penguins got a rude awakening at their Detroit-area hotel when a fire alarm went off about 1:30 a.m. Monday.
“It was kind of annoying,” forward Tyler Kennedy said. “I just stayed in bed. Worse comes to worse, I’d just jump out the window.”
Kennedy said hotel employees confirmed that it was a false alarm.
“They came out and said it was just someone fooling around,” he said. “Probably was a Red Wings fan.”
Also a note that Ryan Malone is currently sporting a broken nose, courtesy of Kronwall in Game #1
*hat-tip to Rotowire
From The Pittsburgh Channel.com,
While Pittsburgh’s hockey Penguins chase the Stanley Cup in Detroit, a young counterpart is waiting for them to bring it home so he can swim in it.
Sidney the penguin, named after team captain Sidney Crosby, hatched at the National Aviary on the city’s North Side in February.
“He can eat up to a pound of fish a day by himself,” said Erin Estell, manager of animal programs at the aviary. “He only weighs about five pounds. In the wild, that is a fifth of their body weight that they are eating.” That’s like a person eating 80 double cheeseburgers a day.
Update 6:37pm ET: For more on Sid the Kid Meets Wild Kingdom, Eric McErlain at AOL Fanhouse posted on what amounted to Sidney, The Diarist Turtle a few days ago.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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