Saturday, October 4, 2008


As John Madden always says, "you can't win 'em all if you don't win the first one.", and while no one expects 82-0, well, it's nice to get started off on the right foot thanks to some quick shots by Tyler Kennedy.

  • Kennedy got his shot on the second line with Jordan Staal and Evgeni Malkin thanks to the effects of an illness and groin injury knocking Petr Sykora out of action for today. TK made the most of his chance, obviously, scoring the two goals on quick surprising shots that Ottawa goalie Martin Gerber didn't seem ready for.
  • Coming into the game Rob Scuderi scored 2 goals in 219 NHL regular season games. Guess he worked on that shot on the off-season. Yeah, probably not.
  • Malkin was seemingly everywhere out there, flying around taking the puck away (credited with 4), blocking shots (2) and we actually thought, while watching the game that his faceoff percentage was a little better in the action than it looks on the scoresheet (4 for 11).
  • The powerplay was 0 for 7 and seemed pretty frustrated, especially in the first period when they got five chances as Ottawa made a bunch of dumb decisions and then paraded to the box. Sidney Crosby showed flashes and Kris Letang didn't look out of place but Ottawa's aggressive PK had the answer today. One can't help but wonder that with a healthy Sergei Gonchar that things don't look a little better on that end. We realize the Sarge aint walkin' through that door anytime soon so you can't think that, but still...
  • PK'ing was a big part of the night too, as the kill went 5 for 6 and Malkin (goal) and Crosby looked as dangerous as the opponent's powerplay. It appears they'll be playing more on the kill this season, which is never a bad idea to lean a little more on the best players.
  • Marc-Andre Fleury and the defense didn't seem that bad but not that good either. Definitely an opening night, no doubt a little weird being six time zones and an ocean away from home.
  • Interestingly enough, perhaps the biggest profile player ofthe evening was a -3 on the night, though Daniel Alfreddson did have 6 shots on goal and 4 takeaways the returning hero couldn't have had the night he was hoping for.

In conclusion, definitely a strange an unusual game in an unusual venue. It's bizarre to think this weekend's game mean just as much as a Wednesday night game in March, but that's the case. And though it wasn't necessarily pretty, the Penguins found a way to win. At the end of the day, that's all that matters.

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