Monday, December 11, 2006

Penguins 5, Capitals 4 (OT - SO 2-1)

Wow. This is the kind of game that can turn a season on it's end. The Pens have been struggling of late, but now have earned 5 points on a three game road trip, punctuated by a HUGE comeback win tonight in Washington.

All you need to know about the early part of the game is that the Pens were down 4-0 by the early part of the second period. They had allowed a power play goal, by Kris Beech no less, and a short-handed goal. These were sandwiched around two goals by Chris Clark.

First, the Penguins got a grinding goal by Max Talbot. Then, Christensen and Crosby scored just 35 second apart (Thank you Mr. Ollie the Goalie). Malkin scored 3:20 into the third period to tie the game and it went to OT.

Malkin took a bad, bad, bad (did I mention bad?) elbowing penalty with 2.3 seconds remaining in the third period, so the Pens had to kill off 2 minutes of 4 on 3 hockey. They did it, had a few chances and got the game to the shoot out.

In the shootout, Christensen led off and made Ollie look really bad. Green couldn't score for the Caps and Crosby failed wide for the Pens (he doesn't seem to use any speed when he's taking penalty shots... and I don't know why). Ovechkin scored a great goal for the Caps to knot things up at 1-1 and I developed a sick feeling in my stomach. That ill feeling was for naught, however, when Malkin became the second Penguin to embarrass Kolzig in the shootout, putting the Penguins up 2-1. Chris Clark, he of the two goals in regulation, basically shot the puck straight into Fleury's glove, and the Pens won the game.

Like I said at the start, this was a TREMENDOUS comeback from a 4 goal deficit. I'm hoping we're looking back on this road trip (and this game in particular) as the time when the season turned around for the Pens and propelled them into the playoffs.

Next up: vs Philadelphia at the Igloo on Wednesday. Nothing like the "Flyers Suck!" chant to welcome a team home after a three game road trip. I'll be watching. Will you?


Will said...

Gotta like it when the Pens can play somewhat sloppy for a period +, then come back and get the win. Talbot always seems to get those goals when the Pens are down and out but I never remember seeing it spark a comeback this this. It was a real physical game too. Lots of clean hits and a few good fights broke out. Thorburn looked like he was fighting to keep his spot in the lineup.

Let's hope they can take this momentum into the game against Philly and get a good 8-1, 8-2 win.

Fauxrumors said...

1) Yes, the team should be very proud coming back from such a deficit on the road. BUT a few observations:
2) The defense was coughing up the puck to the caps forechecking all night. The pens were fortunate on a number of occasions to not be down further. The team in general still plays very undisciplined
3) Just our opinion, but we feel this team would benefit HUGELY from a coaching change. A coach who can properly corral this young group would/could do a far superior job than what they have now.

Will said...

I don't want to see a coaching change this season. Let Therrien have a full year... don't forget most of these guys are just finishing up their first 100 or so games in the league. They are really, really young and are going to make mistakes that young players make no matter how well/or badly they are coached. Unfortunately I do think if the Pens have another losing streak like the one we just had, he will be replaced. Too bad Andy Murry went to St.Louis, if they did let Therrien go he's who I'd have wanted to replace him.