Okay, now about the Pens game...
The game was entertaining, and the Pens certainly made a contest out of it. However, they were thwarted by themselves too many times. Caron made several big saves, but also allowed several softies, including maybe the softest goal I've ever seen. When Ivan Majesky took the puck on the penalty kill in his own zone and heaved it up into the Penguins zone, it rolled and bounced towards the net. Caron, instead of coming out and playing the puck, stayed back and waited for it to come to him. What could happen did happen and Caron was eaten up by the bouncing grounder (it rolled gently to his left and into the goal). It was incredible, and not in a good way.
Couple the goaltending woes with the tendency to take minor (meaning dumb) penalties, and the Caps were able to win the day. The Pens were able to stay in the game and compete pretty well (I thought) despite being outshot by 41-25.
Other positives I saw included:
- Shane Endicott winning 9 out of 10 faceoffs... but still only playing 7:35. I think he's still skating around on one leg. Next year is when his time will come.
- Jani Rita is showing signs that he can be the next speedster to play for the Pens, following in the proud tradition of Rico Fata and Koltsov. The puck seems to stick to him a little bit better.
- Speaking of Koltsov, can someone work with him on his skating and puck control this summer? He has world class speed and seemingly unlimited energy, but he can't stay on his skates or keep the puck on his stick. He was called for diving tonight, when he was really just skating normally. By the way, how can you have a trip AND a dive? If it was a trip, then it wasn't a dive, right? And vice versa, one would assume. More great intelligent work from the incredible braintrust that are the NHL referees.