Things were different for the Pens Sunday. You could sense it from the get-go, perhaps as early as the Crosby interviewed, they were different. Though initially they seemed to come out of the gates with a lot of confidence. They did control the first 2 minutes of the game. But after the Carter and Richards scored within two minutes of each other in the first 5 minutes, the momentum shifted and pretty much dictated the entire game. Geno fortunately scored with about 12 seconds to end the first period and Scuds to start the second. But the next three goals were all Philly which included a short-handed goal by Simon Gagne. Geno did get another goal in the third, but it wasn't enough.
What followed was frustration as the Pens spent a lot of their time trying to show they were tough, instead of trying to score goals. When they held the lead the Flyers smartly played mostly defensive hockey which frustrated the Penguins further. -Rick Moldovanyi
The game was rough, the game was physical, it was pure playoff hockey. Kunitz's first period blast on Timonen was a perfect example of the hatred these teams have for each other. At one point their were 4 Flyers in the Penalty box. There were two fights in the first period alone.
They got up on us early and we were coming from behind the whole game. Right from the beginning we were put behind the eight-ball. -Dan Bylsma
Okay, enough of this game. What needs to change in game 4 for the Pens to win?
1) Keeping the Intensity: The Pens came out the gates with some great composure and intensity but quickly lost it with the 2 quick goals from Philly. As I said, there were a few stretches where it seems the momentum began to shift, but it wasn't continuous.
2) Eliminating Mental Errors: I hate to beat the proverbial dead horse, but I felt there were a few goals in which could have been avoided, namely the Gagne shorty.
3) Playing with a Sense of Urgency: In the first two games the Pens seemed to play as if every minute counted, they didn't do this tonight. Toward the last 5 minutes of this game they did, but again, it was too little too late.
To be honest I kind of expected the Pens to lose one of the games on the road. I was kind of hoping it was the last of the two, but what can you do. Tuesday's game will change everything.