Category: Game Recap
Between the second and third periods, I Tweeted “The word that keeps popping in my head when I watch the Pens in both Game 5 and 6 is “incredulous”.
I couldn’t believe just how much the Senators had been out-working the Penguins since the end of Game Four. And after two periods it sure as hell looked like they were headed back to the Igloo for a Game Seven that no one in the Steel City would be looking forward to.
But thank goodness they finally started dictating the play in the third period. The Pens out-shot the Sens 18-4, eventually getting the tying goal from Matt Cooke to force overtime, and getting the game-winner from Pascal Dupuis on a one-time wrister past Pascal Leclaire at 9:56 of overtime to give the Pens a 4-3 win and a 4-2 series win.
Unless Montreal can complete their comeback over Washington, the Penguins will face the winner of the Buffalo/Boston series. It is still possible for the Penguins to play both Philly (Montreal and Buffalo win) and Montreal (Montreal and Boston win).
Pretty clear what Ottawa’s strategy was coming into tonight’s game against the Penguins at the Igloo: Throw as many pucks on net as possible, crash the crease on Marc-Andre Fleury and play very physical.
Yeah. Didn’t work.
Coming off getting shutout by Marty Brodeur and the Devils, the Pens took out their frustration on the Sens, ignited by the 4th career hat trick by previously slumping Evgeni Malkin in a 8-2 thumping over Ottawa.
Bill Guerin and Chris Kunitz both had four points for the Pens, while Sidney Crosby, Sergei Gonchar and Malkin tallied three points each.
Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 45 of 47 Ottawa shots on net, including 24 in the first period alone.
Nothing to do but tap your stick to Marty.
Martin Brodeur posted his 104th career shutout in tonight’s 4-0 blanking of the Penguins at the Igloo, breaking the previous NHL record of 103 by Terry Sawchuk. Ironically, Sawchuk got his 103rd and final shutout against the Penguins as well, in 1970.
Brodeur stopped all 35 Penguins shots and frankly wasn’t threatened much at all. The only close calls for Brodeur tonight came in the final two minutes of the game, once on a wrister by Sidney Crosby that rang off the post, and a point-blank save on Evgeni Malkin in the final seconds.
Penguins’ defenseman Kris Letang, who gained notoriety during the Pens’ western Canada road trip of the ‘07-08 season when he beat both Miikka Kiprusoff and Roberto Luongo with outstanding moves for game-deciding goals, had been in a bit of a funk when it comes to scoring in the shootout.
But Letang, who had been only 3-for-12 in the shootout since the start of the ‘08-‘09 season, is back on a roll with his second straight game-deciding goal for the Pens, beating Sabres’ backup goalie and former Pen Patrick Lalime with a nice forehand/backhand move to the top shelf, giving the Penguins a 2-1 win over the Sabres at HSBC Arena.
The Penguins are now 6-0 in the shootout this season.
It wasn’t too long ago that Sidney Crosby wasn’t very good at all in the shootout. Coming into this season, Sid was 12-for-38 for a 31.5 percent clip.
Chalk it up to his new sticks, his new shoot-more mentality, whatever you want, but Sid is now batting 1.000 for the season with his fifth shootout goal in as many attempts after tonight’s game-deciding goal to give the Penguins a 3-2 win over the Flyers and a sweep of their home-and-home series.
Crosby also scored his 22nd goal of the season to tie the game at 2-2 for the Pens, while Bill Guerin scored as well. And to top it off, they both came on the revamped powerplay.
Jeff Carter and Claude Giroux scored for the Flyers.
Aaah, nice to see our old friends from the other side of the state again.
The Penguins hosted the rival Philadelphia Flyers tonight at the Igloo in the first of a home-and-home series but weren’t too hospitable, routing the Flyers 6-1.
Jordan Staal scored twice for the Pens, including his 10th career short-handed goal, as the Penguins controlled play for the majority of the game.
Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 26 or 27 shots, while Flyers’ goalie Brian Boucher faded late, stopping 29 of 35 shots.
It was bound to happen sooner or later. The question is, am I referring simply to a powerplay goal or an Evgeni Malkin powerplay goal ?
Turned out it was both, as Malkin scored on a 4-on-3 powerplay in overtime to give the Penguins a 3-2 win over the visiting Florida Panthers.
The Pens got some much-needed scoring from their wingers as well, with Pascal Dupuis and Ruslan Fedotenko scoring in regulation for the Pens. Steven Reinprecht and Stephen Weiss tallied for the Panthers.
I remain to be amazed how sometimes the Pittsburgh Steelers and Pittsburgh Penguins play alike. Doesn’t happen that often, but when it does, it’s uncanny.
One day after the Steelers laid a golden stink bomb at Heinz Field against the woeful Oakland Raiders, the Penguins took it easy for the first 25 or so minutes tonight against the Carolina Hurricanes, allowing three goals before finally waking up. However, their comeback was one goal short, as the Canes finally won their first road game of the season at the expense of the Cup champs, 3-2.
Manny Legace got the win for the Canes, remaining unbeaten in his career vs. the Penguins with a 4-0-0 record. Sidney Crosby continued his strong recent play after taking Saturday off with a sore groin with a goal, while the great Mike Rupp scored his 9th of the season.
Well, they got a point out of it.
In a quite frustrating but highly entertaining game between two teams that you’d think are division rivals, the Blackhawks got an overtime goal by Kris Versteeg to defeat the Penguins, 2-1.
Blackhawks’ backup goalie Antti Niemi got the start, and he didn’t disappoint, making several point-blank saves, as the Pens were fortunate to get a point of the game, coming after Jordan Staal’s goal with only 1:32 left in regulation.
It was the Pens’ first overtime/shootout loss of the season.
One of those out of conference games that didn’t have near the excitement as, say, the Flyers or Rangers, but the outcome of tonight’s Penguins/Avalanche tilt was still in doubt going deep into the third period.
But Bill Guerin’s powerplay goal at 7:15 of the third period broke a 1-1 tie, and the Penguins iced the game away with two empty net goals in the final minute to defeat Colorado, 4-1.
Sidney Crosby had two more goals and an assist, including his 150th career goal, giving him 36 points this season, now only three points behind Joe Thornton for the NHL scoring lead.
About The Confluence
Welcome to The Confluence, a Pittsburgh Penguins blog since 2006.
Originally at Blogspot, then at MVN, TheConfluence has over 1500 articles reporting Penguins news as well as jumping on my soapbox to opine constructive Penguins criticism.
I am blogger- credentialed with the Pittsburgh Penguins. My posts are regularly linked by hockey websites such as the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Pittsburgh Tribune Review, Yahoo!‘s Puck Daddy, and I’ve done numerous guest blogger spots on such websites asthe New YorkTimes. I am a retired U.S. Navy Chief Petty Officer.
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