Probably just you here Ruthless, but what are your thoughts to this point?
Probably just you here Ruthless, but what are your thoughts to this point?
It would have been nice to take at least one of the games in Washington, but a series is not a series until a home team loses. If we hold serve tonight and Friday, then we are tied heading back to D.C., so I am not overly worried just yet.
Crosby and Ovechkin are certainly putting on a show. You hate to see us waste a hat trick like that. Coming into the series, I thought that Malkin would be the x-factor, because he had a better regular season than both Sid and Alex, but the media attention is focused solely on 87 & 8, with the winner of the Art Ross Trophy somehow just an afterthought. Well, Geno has to step it up and step it up big time. I expect 2 goals from him tonight.
We also need some secondary scoring for some of our role players. While the contributions of Crosby and Ovechkin have been basically cancelling each other out so far, the difference has been guys like Steckel and Fleishmann. We need guys like Kennedy and Talbot to do something similar in Pittsburgh now.
The difference in this series should be Fleury vs. Varlamov. It is amazing that coming into this series, their goalie had as many appearances in the first round playoff series against the Rangers (6) as he had appearances in his entire NHL career in the regular season (6). With the amount of firepower we should be able to generate, we should be able to crack this inexperienced kid. He cannot come up with insane lucky saves like the one on Crosby every night.
I say the offensive floodgates open for us tonight and we win 6-3 and then 5-2 on Friday. I predict that of those 11 goals between those two games, we see goals spread out among Crosby, Guerin, Kunitz, Fedotenko, Staal, Kennedy, Gonchar, and Letang...and three by Malkin who finally turns it on on home ice.
A few quick comments:
Are the penguins players afraid of the presence of Ovechkin? It seems like they're
almost star struck and let him do whatever he wants.
Where the hell is Malkin?
It seems that Fleury is being outplayed by Varlamov. I think you're right Ruthless. His
luck runs out tonight and the floodgates open.
Certainly Malkin needs to step up. I'm also very concerned with what's going on with Kunitz though.
During the Flyers series he was a physical presence every time he stepped on the ice. This series the only thing I can remember him doing was dishing Crosby on that shot he got robbed on. Kunitz and Guerin were both big down the stretch, and they both need to reappear starting tonight for the Pens to win this series.
Another thing that bothers me is that the Pens seem to shut teams down all night long as far as just getting routine shots off. Then BAM! They give up a golden scoring opportunity that the other team always seems to capitalize on. It's as if they dominate all game except for a total of 30 seconds, but they give up 3 goals during that 30 seconds and lose because of it if their opponents can hold them to 3 or less goals.
Not only did Malkin wake up, he took his game to a whole new level.
Still, after the Caps tied it up I had a bad Tommiesteel like feeling about the game.
The Pens threw everything they had at Varlamov and couldn't sneak one in.
And of all people to get the goal... Kris Letang. He played a horrible game but came
How's your ulcer Ruthless? :lol:
Malkin was a man possessed last night. Ovechkin may be a force of nature, but when Geno turns it on, he can do things with the puck that Alex can only dream about.Quote:
Originally Posted by Jigawatts
Ovechkin is the hockey equivalent of a chucker in basketball. In order to get his 56 goals in the regular season, he needed 528 shots on goal. The next most shots on goal in the league was 372 by Eric Staal. How ridiculous is it that there is a 156 shot difference from first place to second place?
By the way, Malkin had 290 shots on goal in the regular season, and Crosby had 238. Add those numbers up. It's 528. Yup...Ovechkin took as many shots as Crosby and Malkin combined. They got 68 goals out of their 528 shots. Plus they each had over 70 assists...both of them had twice as many assists as they had goals, meaning that they make the players around them better. Ovechkin had more goals than assists, meaning that he is a puck-hog.
I really thought that something was really wrong with Letang. He was hurt at the end of game two and was a game time decision regarding whether he would be able to play. Then on every power play, it seemed like he could not take a pass cleanly. I thought that they should get him out of there (but then he scores the game winning goal, so what do I know?)
How weird is it that the Pittsburgh Penguins are playing the Washington Capitals in the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs at the same time as Pittsburgh's AHL affiliate, the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, are playing Washington's AHL affiliate, the Hershey Bears, in the second round of the Calder Cup playoffs?
And how weird is it that both Penguin teams lost the first two games of the series on the road before winning last night on home ice, with both games going into overtime and both ending up as 3-2 Penguin victories to pull each series to two games to one?
I have season tickets to the WB/S Pens, but I have only been to one playoff game so far (the first round clincher against Bridgeport). The people who schedule these things are stupid. There are three games scheduled in Wilkes-Barre in this series against Hershey. The first was last night, the second is tomorrow, and the third is Saturday, all at 7:05 p.m. Guess which other two teams are scheduled to play on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday night of this week? I would love to go to these AHL playoff games, but these morons should realize that fans of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and Hershey are bound to be fans of Pittsburgh and Washington as well (at least the majority of them are), so why would we pay for tickets and gas to attend an AHL playoff game when there is an NHL game featuring our favorite team in the Stanley Cup playoffs that we care about more and can watch for free from our own comfy couch?
My father and I thought about going to the games in Wilkes-Barre this weekend while recording the Pens-Cap game on the DVR to watch at home later. However, the idiots that operate the scoreboard in Wilkes-Barre always show the score of the Pittsburgh game whenever Pittsburgh is winning (they flash the score so the crowd will cheer when they see that Pittsburgh is winning, so they think we like that). When we make it through most of the game and they haven't shown the Pittsburgh score at all yet, then we can reasonably assume that Pittsburgh is losing, because they only tend to show the score when Pittsburgh is winning in order to get a nice cheer from the crowd. So when they show the score of a game we are recording, we are ticked off because we want to watch the game at home without knowing the score in advance (I hate that with a passion). And when they don't show the score of the game, we are ticked even more because then we know we are losing. It's a lose-lose situation, which is why I will not be attending an AHL playoff game during this series, in spite of the fact that I will be free both nights since my wife and kids will be out on Long Island to visit her sister for the weekend. Thanks for allowing me to vent some frustrations at no one in particular. :evil:
I can see this series going all seven with every game being decided by a single goal.
Varlamov has been a revelation for the Craps. He has been absolutely filthy and is head and shoulders above MAF right now. I'm not so sure that the Pens will be able to get anything past him just using conventional force. Passing, playmaking and a sturdy resolve on set plays (faceoffs and odd-man rushes) will have to be ramped up if the Pens plan on breaking Varlamov's shell. Get him off balance...which is something effective passing does...and he could be cracked that way.
BTW, RB, that is an excellent point about Ovechkin...the guy is simply a sniper and, quite frankly, is getting away with murder because the Pens blue line is allowing him too much space. He alone killed the Pens in Game 2 because he was virtually unchecked on the PP.
And that's another point...the Pens' ST have been too brutal to this point to inspire much confidence going forward. The team simply needs to check down on Ovechkin harder on the PP than what they are doing now. And I don't know about you, but Orpik seems to have disappeared and the rest of the D hasn't picked up the slack. Gonchar, Gill and the rest of the blue liners simply need to ratchet their game a lot tighter than they have it now.
Crosby is doing his thing, and doing it very well. Getting consistent production from Malkin will help, but I think his play last night is a good indicator that whatever they worked on during the off-day paid off. It would be great to see Cookie or TK step in and cause some problems on the Pens attack.
BTW, RB, just why are the Calder Cup playoffs this long? You'd think they were the NHL with the way they govern their schedule. I would love to see the AHL broken up into two or three smaller leagues (like minor league baseball), with a shortened schedule, shortened playoff structure and tightened travel boundaries.
As it's constituted now, the Calder Cup playoffs are as long as the Stanley Cup playoffs...for a MINOR LEAGUE! :wft
The NHL needs to curb their feeder league a bit and dictate the schedule to favor the development of players for the parent clubs and not simply to elongate the schedule to help fill dates for the league's arenas and cities.
Originally Posted by RuthlessBurgher
Just kidding. :lol:
I guess they didn't use any common sense when they scheduled those games. :roll: