Friday, May 09, 2008

Round 3 Game 1: Pens v Flyers (W 4-2)

Fleury29 said...
Crosby will score a goal. Take that to the bank.
May 9, 2008 8:11:00 AM

BOOYAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Good call!!! :) :) :)

GENO BETTER WIN THAT HART TROPHY, that's all I've got to say! WOOOOOOOO!!! What a game. After a bit of a shaky start, the Pens stormed back and completely pwned the Flyers.

Now, for anyone who missed it, I've been dubbed the "King of Crosby Humpers" over at this Flyers forum. I bring it up only to make the obvious correction that I am in fact the Queen of the Crosby Humpers, though technically, I much prefer my proper title, "Empress of the Crosby Humpers!" HAHAHAHAHAHA!!! :P

Anyhoo, the Flyers are playing without the services of Kimmo Timonen, after he was told yesterday that he has a blood clot in his foot. Timonen was in the building to provide moral support to his team. Ryan "Wolverine" Whitney (← have you looked at his beard lately?!) took the night's first penalty for delay of game after he popped the puck up and over the glass. The Flyers went absolutely nuts on their advantage but just couldn't manage to get things to mesh for a good scoring chance. They didn't score on the power play. Ruutu made an amazing move around a Flyer by passing the puck - to himself! The Pens first great chance came after Geno busted through everyone and fired a shot that bounced off Martin Biron. The rebound went right to Syko, but his shot was just wide of the net. Hossa then made a sick move of his own to get around a Flyer. Sid made an unreal move and stole the puck. The Pens were doing everything right, but nothing was happening for them.

That is until Patrick Thoresen turned the puck over to Geno in the neutral zone. He sent the puck to Bugsy over at the far side. Bugsy then made a sweet cross ice pass to Syko, who was at the near wall with Geno at the center. Patience paid off for Syko as he waited for the most opportune moment to fire the puck behind Biron. [Pens 1, Flyers 0]

Sid then came out swinging. He was setting everyone up. Hossa and Dupuis both had chances that just missed. Shortly afterwards, Mike Richards fired a shot that was stopped with a stunning save by the Flower. It prompted a TV timeout, and almost immediately after returning from commercial, Richards made a wraparound move. Flower made an attempt to cover but the puck bounced off MAF's pad and went in. Because the whistle had been blown, the ref immediately waived the goal off. Of course, these are the playoffs so the play went to the War Room in Toronto for review. Upon viewing the replay, it was shown that the puck crossed BEFORE the whistle was blown. [Pens 1, Flyers 1]

Biron nearly gave it right back to the Pens after he and Geno had a little run-in. Biron didn't freeze the puck and stood awkwardly in front of it as Bugsy streaked in to poke it. Luckily for Biron, his defenders held Bugsy off. For the most part, the teams were very disciplined. Well, okay there was a lot of pushing, shoving, posturing, and mouthing off, but it was REALLY tame compared to most Pens/Flyers games. Lady Luck smiled on the Flyers (albeit temporarily, hee hee) when, after MAF went down low to block a shot and so did defenders Hal Gill and Rob Scuderi, the puck bounced right to the wide open Richards. He elevated the puck up over the mess in front and put the puck into the goal. [Pens 1, Flyers 2]

Before you could finish a thought about getting in touch with Tonya Harding to take care of that Richards problem, Hossa centered a pass from the corner for the Saint who was left basically unchallenged in front of Biron. [Pens 2, Flyers 2]

R.J. Umberger picked a Penguin pocket and made a run at MAF, who somehow remained calm and coolly poke checked Umberger before he even had a chance to think about firing a shot. Brooks Orpik made matters worse for Umberger by finishing his check and smashing Umberger into the boards. Geno was shoved into the net behind Biron and Scottie Upshall inexplicably missed on a redirect in the last frantic minutes of the period. The Pens had several good chances in the last minute and a half. The hard work paid off when Wolverine made a textbook lead pass to Geno. He and Syko went 2-on-1 towards Biron. Geno fired a shot that Biron never saw coming to give the Pens the lead going into the locker room. [Pens 3, Flyers 2] The remaining 6.5 seconds ticked down to end the period.

Geno and the Saint came out swinging again in the second period. The Versus announcers were insisting that this series has been dubbed "The Pennsylvania Cold War." WHAT?! I've only heard it being called The Battle of PA. Whatev. Orpik creamed Scott Hartnell into the boards behind Flower and was called for holding. As he was led to the box, Orpik said this to the ref: "[Jason] Smith does it every shift." On the ensuing Flyers power play, Geno went on a shorthanded breakaway. Richards and Biron worked together to prevent him from scoring, then Richards drilled Geno into the boards. Geno was slow to get up (which is actually a good thing), so Richards heads back down to the Pens' zone to help his team on the 5 on 3. But remember this is EVGENI MALKIN that Richards left all alone in the Flyers' zone. Power play or not, that is a HUGE mistake. Sergei Gonchar got control of the puck and sent a long lead pass to the wide open and alone Geno. He had plenty of time to decide what he wanted to do. He ended up taking a slapshot from about 10-15 feet out. GENO GETS THE SHORTY!!! [Pens 4, Flyers 2]

With 31 seconds left on Orpik's penalty, Jeff Carter took a penalty for hooking. Neither team scored on the 4-on-4, and the Pens didn't even get a shot on their advantage. Umberger made a quick wraparound play a little later that was answered by the pad of MAF. Sid tried a wraparound move, too, that Biron then smothered. Hossa was held up right in front of a ref, but no call was made. Sid's stick was held, but again, no call. Despite some intense hockey by both teams, neither team scored again.

In the third period, Wolverine took a penalty after Upshall embellished a trip. Bugsy almost stopped the world by scoring shorthanded, but his shot was just wide of the goal. Scuderi was high sticked by Umberger, but no call was made. The Pens prevented the Flyers from even getting a shot on this power play. Later, a shot from a Flyer hit the crossbar behind MAF. Hossa took a high stick in the mouth from Braydon Coburn, but AGAIN - no call was made. Flower made an unreal diving poke check on Carter just before the announcers said there were only 100 seconds left in the game. Seconds later, Upshall hit Kris Letang from behind after the whistle and this happened:

After the dust settled, Derian Hatcher was given 2 minutes for hooking, Upshall was given 2 minutes for crosschecking and 10 minutes for misconduct, and Geno, who was first in to defend his teammate, was given 2 minutes for roughing. With 1:02 left in the game, Biron was pulled in favor of the extra attacker. Bugsy had a chance on the empty net, but his shot was just wide. With :04.4 left in the game, Sid was tied up behind the empty net by Coburn. He was penalized for hooking, but, with less than 5 seconds to play, it didn't really matter. Time ticked down and the PENS WON THE GAME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Keep sending in your pictures that show how you're supporting the Pens - I've gotten some really good ones!!! I'll be posting them on Monday, so you still have two days to get them in. Remember - it doesn't have to be a shrine. It can be on your car, on you, on your wall... Just show us how you let the world know you're a member of Pens Nation!!! :)

Game 2. Sunday. 7:30pm Eastern. Be there.

GO PENS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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