Friday, May 9, 2008

It's a Geno world...Pens win

Rock and roll game 1 that saw the Pens come out on a 4-2 win...Our thoughts:

  • Who takes a slap-shot from 15 feet on a clean breakaway while shorthanded? Someone that knows they are going to bury it. Very few players in the world could do what Evgeni Malkin did right there, especially after getting slammed into the boards by Mike Richards.
  • Sidney Crosby did his part to keep the Pens in it, after two Richards goals, by deflecting a shot/pass in to make it 2-2 in a wild first period....Not to be outdone, Malkin scored on a twisted wrister with 6 seconds to go with a shot that made us say, "yep that Marty Biron isn't that good".
  • The Pens first goal was the result of an absolutely sick dangle by Petr Sykora....Boy are we glad he called Ray Shero at 12:01 AM 1 July and asked to join the Pens.
  • Brooks Orpik was credited with 6 hits. Impressive but unless you watched the impact of each and every shot you can't appreciate it.
  • Tyler Kennedy had 9:08 in ice-time but hustled around the ice and played well, making it seem like he was out there for more than just 9 minutes...Mark our words, sooner or later this playoff season this kid is going to score a huge goal.
  • We don't question Michel Therrien much, but we don't see the point in having a Hal Gill-Rob Scuderi pairing and a Ryan Whitney-Kris Letang unit. Just seems like too much of the same thing....To that point the Scuderi/Gill pairing were out there (and both in front of the net) for both of the Flyers goals.
  • Marc-Andre Fleury couldn't really be faulted for the goals, and more importantly he played awesome helping the Pens killing 3 penalties and making a beauty of a glove save on Jeff Carter. Nothing to worry about here, the Flower is still rolling on.
  • Also not to be noticed or praised, but a great stat line for Ryan Malone: only 15:24 icetime, 3 shots on goal, 1 assist, 5 hits and a +2. Not to mention all the ice he opened up for Sykora and Malkin.
  • Speaking of guys you won't talk about, Marian Hossa had a wonderful game, mostly away from the puck backchecking and taking the body. Even though he didn't make an offensive impact (just 2 shots on goal and 1 assist) he still was force.

All in all, the story was too much Malkin for the Flyers to handle. This was a game at home for the Pens and one they really had to have to get things off on the right foot; but the point is they did it and were pretty impressive in doing so.

As we predicted, the Flyers just don't have the defense (especially with Kimmo Timonen out) to hang with the Pens skill or the goaltender to keep the puck out of the net. Tonight Evgeni Malkin absolutely had his way with Philadelphia every time he touched the ice. And the Flyers didn't give much reason to think they can do anything to stop him. Let alone if Crosby and Hossa start converting more of their chances....Plus the Flyers played a displinced brand of hockey (taking only 1 penalty while the game was still in question), should they do any different they ought to know they're in a world of hurt.

9 wins down, just 7 more to go....

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