Pens find a way, to lose...

The lesson I learned from this loss is not to put my 2 year old down between periods. Rather, its just best to let her stay up for the whole game. Why? Because after 2 periods we were up 2-1. Then I read Ava a book, did nigh-nigh prayer, and come back to the game down a goal. Sorry honey, daddy's got a game on.

In any event, post game thoughts are never fun when you lose. And when you lose the way we did tonight its even worse. I'd rather do a photoshop and completely belittle the entire country, but I'll be fair tonight. The Canadiens played real well in the third period to come back and win the game. They did what I said they wanted to do in the third instead of the first. Come out, get a lead, and hang on for dear life. They did just that after scoring the two goal early in the 3rd. Credit them for their efforts. Though discredit the Penguins for simply not being ready in the third. They were stunned by Lapierre's wrap around, then were out of position on their third goal. After that frustration set in. Sid took his cape off and showed he is in fact mortal by making a few bad passes. Geno likewise failed to capitalize on a breakaway with 3 minutes remaining.

While I like to give credit where credit is due, and I know I've said this before, but the Habs didn't win this game, the Pens lost it. They let it slip out of their hands. All they needed to do was match the Habs intensity for 20 more minutes and they didn't. Now they're tied in the series instead of being up 3-1. Its a sober reminder that you have to come out ready every single game and not let up for one minute in the playoffs. The Habs are hungry, they just took down the President trophy winners and now they want to take down the current Cup holders on their way to the EFC. Will the Pens stop them, or will Montreal celebrate another series victory? The drama continues Saturday.


I don't think I saw the Penguins play a better period in these playoffs. Perhaps game 3 was the closest. Either way, while watching the first 20 minutes I was reminded of memories of yesteryear with the type of goals and the amount of energy displayed by the players. After going down 1 goal real quick they came back and exploited the defense and got two quick ones of their own. Talbot shhhhh'd the crowd with a weak backhander through Halak's legs. Then Kunitz got rewarded for crashing the net. 

The other significant factor was the forecheck and the puck management. There wasn't a time when you didn't see two Penguins putting pressure on Montreal's defense and creating scrum after scrum along the boards. Likewise there was a period of time where the Pens kept the puck in the Habs zone for, I would say, more than 2 full minutes. 

At this point you were thinking to yourself, this game could get out of hand quickly, and in our favor. But oddly it didn't. Letang missed a wide open net when he couldn't corale the puck onto his stick. Still, the Pens were leading and all seemed well.


Despite what you see on the score sheet (11-3 SOG in favor of the Pens), the period wasn't much to talk about. The level of intensity seemed to die down a bit but the momentum still favored the Pens. There was no scoring and only one penalty, which doesn't make for an exciting period for anyone. 


As I said in the beginning, I missed the first 3 minutes since I had to put my kid asleep, so I missed it. Thankfully (or unthankfully rather) I caught the replay of both goals. Wrap around goals are few and far between in the playoffs, but Fleury wasn't on tonight, that was clear. The second goal was a matter of circumstance, what can you do. Though I'm convinced any other night Fleury would have had that.

The Pens did provide a period ending onslaught of their own, only they came up short. Geno should have absolutely scored on that breakaway. Had he did, the game was ours. But Halak held his own. Though Geno didn't appear well, especially after he crashed into the boards with Subban in the first. Looked like he twisted his knee a bit. Here's to hoping for the best. Also Sid had a chance at the end that Halak stopped. I didn't get a good glimpse at it but it appeared he had an open net. 


This Game 5 is going to be huge. The Pens MUST make this a statement game like game 1. They need to win on home ice and not run the risk of possibly going back to Montreal down 3-2. The last thing they need is to head back to Montreal on the brink of elimination. I assert this will not be the case.

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