Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Game 3: Nothin's over til we say it is...Pens win

Sidney strikes again
Now that's more like it. The Penguins show a lot more heart, desire, effort, devotion and find some open ice to make it all work. Some thoughts:
  • We still can't get over kuklakorner author IwoCPO's thoughts on Sergei Gonchar..."Datsyuk, Zetterberg and Homer will have them fetal by period 2, Game 1. Gonchar: exposed." The only thing exposed is that guy to a class defenseman.
  • So, how about that Sidney Crosby. Two huge goals and a cross-bar that was that close to making it three. El Sid found more room to work and Detroit's not doubting who the best player in this series is anymore.
  • For long stretches, whether it was the atmosphere of being at home, the favorable matchups or what but the Pens flat out dominated the play. From about five minutes left in the first through the first half of the 2nd period a new observer would have sworn the Penguins were the team up in the series and on the verge of a sweep. Only some poorly timed penalties de-railed the train to a sure huge victory.
  • Speaking of those penalties, Hal Gill got rang up for two. And we can't disagree, if the refs are going to be strict on Tomas Holmstrom for interfering on the crease like he does, they ought to be just as stern about the cross-checks and jostling that guys like Gill and Brooks Orpik do to impede Holmstrom.
  • Rob Scuderi, quickly become a TST whipping boy, got walked right around by Johan Franzen for the first Detroit goal. A nice goal by Franzen, we would have liked to see Scuds be a little more authoritative in his play.
  • Veteran Darryl Sydor showed a little rust, but that was only natural for a 36 year old player who hasn't played in a game situation since March 31st. We thought he acquited himself as well as could be expected given his skillset and role in the 13:31 he played. And kudos to the coaches for shielding and limiting him to that amount.
  • At least every defenseman had two blocked shots (Ryan Whitney abnormally led the way with 5). Orpik led the hit parade with 7. And as you'd know from reading this blog, a Brooks Orpik hit means more than any old regular hit. Orpik played wonderful.
  • As the intrepid reader might notice, we've highlighted every defenseman on the squad. That's because it's a team game and to beat a team as solid as the Red Wings it's going to have to be a toatl effort with contributions from all.

At the end of the day the Pens win. And they're right back in this series. Losing 2 games to 1, but they've broken through the invincibility shields of the Red Wings and now everybody knows it. But the same effort has to be there Saturday night. Tonight's a great win, but Detroit still holds the advantage. If they take Game 4, they get the desired split and go home needing just one win of three games to get the Holy Grail.

There will be plenty of time for the MSM to tell you that but for now let's just relish in the joy of a Stanley Cup Finals win....

13 down, just 3 more to go until Lord Stanley....

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