by Tony on 04/14/11 at 11:10 AM ET
Tenacious forecheck? - Check. Solid defense? - Check. Stellar goaltending? - Check.
That, combined with an 18 second burst with two goals resulted in a 3-0 Penguins victory over Tampa Bay in Game One of their opening round playoff series.
- Safe to say Marc-Andre Fleury saved the Penguins’ collective bacon several times. The save on Vinny Lecavalier’s between-the-legs attempt was fantastic. Not to mention a half dozen others that weren’t chopped liver either.
- Give Tampa credit, they controlled play in the first period and had several good scoring opportunities in the crease. Who knows how that game turns out if one of those squeezes through, such as it did for the Caps in the closing minutes of regulation in their game.
- Overall, I thought the playoff crowd, frankly, were merely OK from my couch vantage point. There were a handful of times that they were definitely rocking the new barn, no doubt. But there were also big pockets of time that they were quite quiet. Perhaps it was because the Lightning aren’t a hated rival as compared to Philly or Washington or the Rangers. Anyway, that’s the way it appeared to me.
- The decision by Penguins’ management not to hand out the white T-shirts for their “whiteaht” (and recommend they buy them) resulted in a “meh” showing. It looked pretty cool before gametime, but it quickly became apparent that the whiteout was more specifically white sprinkled with blank and blue and yellow. Here’s hoping the Penguins change their policy for future home games: Either hand out the white T-shirts, or don’t do it at all.
- It’s only one game, but Alex Kovalev and Aaron Asham could be the kind of players that thrive on the postseason. Sure, Kovy got kind of fortunate after he got back up after the non-call for tripping, then being wide open for the pass from James Neal for the opening goal. As far as Asham goes, his combination of physicality and an underrated set of hands seem to mesh well with the playoffs. We’ll just have to see if that continues.
- Speaking on non-calls, Pens obviously got away with two clear high-sticking penalties on Zbynek Michalek, the first resulting in root canal work for Marty St. Louis last night. Methinks you should expect some early Tampa powerplays Friday night. That’s just how it goes, folks.
- Have to say I was surprised to see that Tampa actually out-hit the Penguins, 44-35. In addition, they out-blocked the Penguins, 22-13.
One down, three to go.
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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.
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