Sunday, October 05, 2008

Penguins 4, Senators 3 (OT)

That was a nice way to start the season, wasn't it?

The Pens struck early when TK did his patented move.  It's the equivalent of the fade-away jumper in basketball, as he skated out from below the goal line to the left circle, turned and fired a wrister that either went short-side or under the right arm of Gerber.  Bad goal for Gerber to allow.  Great goal for Kennedy to score.  1-0 Pens.

The Sens tied the game on a redirect by Sean Donovan.  Not much Fleury could do about that.  1-1 Tie.

The Pens took the lead again on a short-handed breakaway by Evgeni Malkin.  The Sens dump-in attempt hit the back of Chris Neil, and Malkin took off with the puck.  It was the only true breakaway of the game, and Malkin buried it.  2-1 Pens.

The Sens tied the game again on a power play goal by Heatley, and took their first lead on a short-handed goal by Spezza.  3-2 Sens.

That setup the game tying goal by the person you might least expect, Rob Scuderi.  He took a seeing-eye pass from Sid, took another step and wristed the puck past Gerber.  Great goal for Scuds.  3-3 Tie.  

The game went to OT, and with just 25 seconds left, Tyler Kennedy stripped the puck from Dany Heatley, skated up ice and fired the puck past Martin Gerber.  Pens win, 4-3.

A few notes:
  • Ruutu wasn't all that annoying.  He tried to start some nonsense, but really didn't get anything going.  Dupuis did get away with a slash across Ruutu's hands.
  • Chris Neil, on the other hand, likes to run players, but won't actually fight.  Goddard tried to get him to drop the gloves, but he wouldn't, and Goddard drew the penalty.  The announcers called that a "veteran" move.  I call it a "chicken" move.
  • Having said that, Goddard needs to recognize the limits and not go over them in drawing penalties.  If Neil won't fight, then just keep agitating him within the rules.
  • Fleury didn't have to make many difficult saves, but he made all the ones he should.  The only time I was unsure of him was on the Spezza short-handed goal.  Flower seemed to be too deep in the net.
  • Huge boost in secondary scoring.  Getting two from Kennedy and one from Scuderi was a big plus.  The Pens are going to need more of that this year.
Next up:  Quick turnaround against the Sens at 2:30 on Sunday.

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