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The Confluence

Luongo injures groin, Canucks down Penguins anyway, 3-1

Turns out that a potentially serious groin injury to Roberto Luongo didn’t make much difference to the Canucks.

Turns out that playing their third game in about seventy-two hours didn’t make much difference to the Canucks.

Helped out by a pretty putrid effort by the Penguins for the majority of the game, the Canucks got a couple of scrappy goals and some good relief goaltending by Curtis Sanford to hang on and defeat the Penguins at the Igloo, 3-1.

Canucks’ goalie Roberto Luongo was injured in the first period while going down into the butterfly and extending his left leg, injuring his groin.  Sanford came in and stopped 17 of 18 shots.

Mike Zigomanis scored the only goal for the Penguins, who were basically sleepwalking for the first two periods of the game.  They attempted to turn up the heat and were successful when Zigomanis scored 22 seconds into the third period, but that was all the offensive the Penguins could muster.

The game started on a wild note as only 25 seconds into the game, after a Matt Cooke hip check, three separate bouts were happening on the ice at the same time.  The officials somehow ejected Cooke from the game, even though he was the player the Canucks were going after.  I would have thought if anyone from the Penguins would be ejected it would have been one of the other two Penguins’ combatants, Brooks Orpik or Tyler Kennedy.  Jannik Hansen was also ejected for the Canucks.

After that, though, the Penguins went into one of their familiar funks, not much of a forecheck, lots of turnovers, and not a lot of shots on net.  In fact, in the second period they only had three shots on net.

The Canucks got on the board late in the first period when Pavol Demitra poked a loose puck towards Pens’ goalie Dany Sabourin and deflected it in midair to the other side of the goal, where he had time to skate around the net and poke it into the net to make it 1-0 Canucks.

They doubled their lead about seven minutes into the second period off a set faceoff play when Daniel Sedin took the faceoff win and skated in on Sabourin and was able to poke a puck under Sabourin and into the net making it 2-0.

The Penguins opened up the third period with the fourth line and were finally able to get on the scoreboard, as Zigomanis took a pass from Kennedy in the left slot and fired a wrister that Sanford couldn’t stop to cut the lead to 2-1 Canucks, but that was the extent of the scoring until a Demitra open netter with 12 seconds remaining.

Other notes:
-  Cooke’s ejection was a big emotional swing for the Penguins.  As I mentioned in the game preview, I had a feeling Cooke would be extra pumped for this game, and he was.  Unfortunately, the referee decided to eject him, and the Penguins never regained that emotion.
-  The Penguins’ powerplay continues to fall down the NHL standings, going 0 for 4.  The Pens’ penalty killers were 2 for 2.

The Penguins now go on the road for the next two games, Wednesday on Long Island against the Islanders and Friday in Buffalo against the Sabres.

Filed in: , | The Confluence | Permalink
  Tags: nhl-hockey, pittsburgh+penguins, vancouver+canucks


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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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