Saturday, February 03, 2007

Penguins 2, Capitals 0

This win was another important milestone for the Penguins. It was the first game they've won this season when Sidney Crosby doesn't record a point. That's a really important rung on the ladder the team is climbing. They need to know that they can still win a game when the big guns aren't firing on all cylinders.

The game itself wasn't too exciting. Both teams seemed to have trouble getting the engines revved up, and even when they did, it didn't amount to much. You know that when your only 5 on 5 goal is scored by Petro, the teams aren't at their peak.

However, the Pens did what they needed to in order to win the game. Colby Armstrong missed the game with a knee injury (he's day to day and will probably miss tomorrow), and the PK stepped it up to kill off four penalties. Dominic Moore and (surprisingly) Jarkko Ruutu stepped in for Army quite capably on the penalty kill.

The Pens only managed 19 shots on Ollie the Goalie, despite the fact that the Caps have allowed more shots than anyone in the league. This has more to do with the system the Caps were playing - they allowed the Pens defense to skate the puck up the ice and all five Capitals were clogging the neutral zone. The Pens didn't seem to have an answer for that, as they weren't very successful at getting through it, and not very good at the dump and chase. It's something to keep an eye on should other teams try it.

Marc-Andre Fleury was fantastic, again. He's the MVP for the Pens since the beginning of 2007, if you ask me. He'll be starting again tomorrow in Montreal.

Next up: at Montreal tomorrow at 2:00. Rematch time.


Pens Insider said...

Nice recap. If you want to exchange links post a comment on my site and I'll get it up ASAP.

Will said...

Yeah, kind of a let down game after the action against Montreal. Great to see the Pens come out with a win when either team could have got it. Like you said, Fleury has just been great. Since the Dallas game you can really tell he's got his confidence going. Petro getting the game winner is great. Good to see Staal get the empty netter. He has has so many good chances that just miss it was nice to see him get an easy one. I can't wait to watch the game tomorrow. What a great way to kill time before the Super Bowl. GO PENS... and Bears!