Friday, December 09, 2011

Inconsistent - Flyers 3, Penguins 2

So what happened?

Crosby or no Crosby - the Pens have had two good indications over the past two games that they have some work to do if they want to be considered one of the top teams in the East.

The Pens started out well for the first few shifts, and then the wheels fell off of the wagon.  By the time the wagon was repaired, the Pens were down 3-0 and had a hole to climb out of.  They almost made it to the top, but couldn't quite get there.  Against a team like the Flyers (and a goalie like Bryzgalov), you can't get down like that and expect to come back.  It just doesn't happen very often.

What I'd love to know is, how do we get 11 minor penalties called in the first two periods and then ZERO in the third?  Did the guys suddenly tighten up their play to avoid the calls?  I doubt it.

The Pens and Flyers both had ample opportunities on the power play, and each team cashed in once.  The Pens, however, had a far bigger chance when they failed to score on a five-on-three during which two Flyers broke their sticks.  That's right - the Flyers had just one guy with a stick (plus the goalie).  The Pens didn't realize it and weren't able to capitalize.  Not scoring on the five-on-three is a rally killer, and seems to be a habit for this team.

Nice work in the third period to really carry the play.  Would have been nice to see some of that during the first period too.

Who scored?

Neal (15), Malkin (10)

The Good?
  • Tyler Kennedy went right after Harry Zolnierczyk to hold him accountable for crashing into Marc-Andre Fleury.  That was nice to see.
  • Dominating the third period, out shooting the Flyers 14-7.
  • Scoring quickly on the power play after Zac Rinaldo, the latest in a long line of Flyers goons, took a cheap shot at Robert Bortuzzo.  That was the best way possible to stick it to Rinaldo.
  • Paul Martin logging big time minutes, especially after Bortuzzo went out.  Martin has been around 28-30 minutes every night for the last four gaems.
The Bad?
  • Paging Steve Sullivan and Chris Kunitz - where are you during these big games?  Between Monday and this one, these two combined for two shots total.
  • Geno on the faceoffs during the third period - 0-5 - that hurts.
The Ugly?
  • Five-on-three with two penalty killers that had no sticks - no goals, ONE shot.  Doesn't get any uglier than that.
Any Surprises?
  • Seeing Jagr for the first time this season, I was surprised by how fast he looked.  I don't remember that level of effort from the previous times we saw him.
What's their record now?
The Pens are 16-9-4.

Who's next?
Saturday night on Long Island, without Sid.

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