Wow. What a game. This was a great way to showcase everything that the NHL has to offer, despite the poor conditions.
The first period went really well for the Pens. They dominated the play, pretty much from the drop of the puck. They managed to get one past Ryan Miller early on, and that was fortunate, because Miller was tough today. The Pens did manage to hit the crossbar at least twice during the first.
For the second period, things were completely reversed. The Pens couldn't get anything going. They couldn't keep the puck on their sticks, and they couldn't get it in deep. They were caught on a bad change that led directly to the Sabres goal.
Third period was back and forth, with both teams getting great chances. Neither one could take advantage, and were were about to go to overtime when Colby was called for hooking. The national announcers saying the call was "questionable" translates in real English to "total horse crap". Fortunately, the Pens were up to the challenge and killed off the penalty.
In the shootout, Kotalik scored on the first attempt for the Sabres, and Crusher missed for the Pens. I thought that was it, because Crusher couldn't move the puck like he usually does, and that's what Letang is all about. My fears were unfounded, though, because Letang did his forehand / backhand move and flipped the puck right over the leg of Miller. Afinogenov missed for the Sabres, and Sid had a chance to win it, which he did by going five-hole when Miller reached out for the poke check.
I can't say enough about how well Ty Conklin played. He kept the Pens in the game late, especially in OT when the Sabres were blasting the puck from all angles on the power play. He also made two great saves in shootout.
Sid took the opportunity today to step up and show why he's the best in the league. He played really well, working hard and making it pay off in the shoot out when it mattered most.
Great game to watch. Great win for the Pens. They need to build off of this momentum and keep rolling.
Next up: The Maple Leafs visit the Igloo on Thursday.