So what happened?
Things looked bleak after the first period for the Pens. The score was still tied, but the Pens had hit four (!!) posts / crossbars and had two failed breakaways. It was like the Hockey Gods were conspiring against the Pens.
The great part about this team is that they don't quit. They kept working, and when Scott Clemmensen misplayed the puck behind the net (and then slipped when trying to come back around), Steve Sullivan buried the puck into an open net. It was exactly what the team needed, when they needed it most.
Geno scored in the last minute of the second period to make it 2-0 and the Pens were rolling (or, as least ambling - they haven't been rolling in quite some time).
Sullivan (8), Malkin (18), Kennedy (6), Neal (22)
- Flower held the fort and kept the Pens in the lead. He made several really nice saves.
- The Pens played their game for most of the first two periods, out shooting the Panthers 32-17.
- Neal had another goal on a nasty wrist shot to ice the game.
- The Panthers were able to set up shop for extended shifts in the offensive zone against the Pens on at least two occasions. Nothing bad came of this (much to the Pens credit), but they need to find a way to get the puck out in those circumstances. They were a bad bounce away from this game being much closer.
- Nothing ugly.
- Sullivan's goal would have to qualify - the way things have been going lately, it should have been shanked off to the side or stopped by a miraculous sliding play.
What's their record now?
The Pens are 22-17-4.
Tampa Bay - Sunday afternoon