Big Game Max Talbot got the ball rolling with a huge goal on a delayed penalty. And in typical series fashion, the first goal led to a 2nd shortly after. All Arron Asham does is score goals in the playoffs. And the Top 2 defensive pairings, led by Kris Letang and Z Michalek logged HUGE minutes last night.
The Penguino had to battle a lot more than the Tampa Bay Lightning last night. Once again, the officiating sucked. Steve Downie, who launched himself into the head of Ben Lovejoy in a blatant attempt to injure, was going to be given a 2 minute minor before Talbo scored. Should have been a 5 minute major. He'll be meeting with Colin Campbell this morning for his coin flip to determine whether he'll be suspended or not.
Upon further review, Downie doesn't appear to leave his feet. It looks like he scales the boards like Spiderman, so we're not sure if that's illegal or not.
Then there was the call that led to Tampa's 1st goal. Alex Kovalev gets cross checked into crazy faced Roloson, as James Neal is praying for a puck to go into the net. But Kovy gets called for goalie interference, and the Bolts would get a St Louis PPG shortly after.
3rd period, Vinny does the center drive thingy, barrels into Paul Martin, and Martin gets called for interference. Questionable. Tampa adds another PPG courtesy of Root Canal. BTW: when the Bolts aren't playing non-hockey with their 1-3-1 trap, and have a 1 man advantage, they actually look pretty entertaining. Shame that Guy Boucher feels the need to strangle all the talent out of that team for the majority of the game.
So the game is tied briefly, thanks to the refs. TK time. Eff the refs. Eff your dumb ass rally drums. Buries it. 30 seconds after St Louis ties it with his 2nd of the game, Mr Kennedy gets the GWG. Eff your "green men" too...
These dorks have nothing on the dudes from Vancouver. If you're going to copycat something, don't half ass it. Go full retard and leave on the face gear. More proof the game needs to get out of the South and back to Canada. I bet they also have cheerleaders.
Speaking of dorks...I used to think Dominic Moore was a quality hockey player. This guy spends more time flopping around on the ice and snapping his head back than the best divers in the game. He's Sean Avery, minus any balls.
And while we're on the subject of players we're growing tired of...simmer down Ryan Malone. Your irrelevance in the series is not forgivable by acting like you're doing something in front of the net. Skating by MAF every time he has the puck so you can smile at him isn't a nuisance. It's a cry from being homesick.
Oh...Chris Kunitz will also have a coin flip this morning in Colin Campbell's office this morning. We love Kunitz, but if we were the NHL, we'd suspend him for his blatant elbow to Gagne. Fortunately, for us Pens fans, it is the NHL and a suspension isn't inevitable. We'll know the results of the coin flip later this morning. Dumb play by Kunitz, nonetheless.
After Raffi Torres escaped suspension yesterday, we looked up Rule 48, which Colin Campbell conveniently used as his explanation for the non-suspension ruling. Per the NHL rule book, Rule 48 reads as follows:
Illegal checks to the head by Matt Cooke, defined as "a lateral or blind side hit to an opponent (other than Marc Savard) where the head is targeted and/or the principle point of contact is not permitted," will now be subject to a five-minute major penalty and automatic game misconduct, as well as possible supplemental discipline if deemed appropriate by the father of a son who plays on the Bruins.
So if you read that rule above, by the letter of the law, it is foreseeable that Kunitz could get off here without a suspension.
Our 3 stars:
#1 Kris Letang - led the D, and looked more like 1st half of the season Letang than 2nd half of the season Letang. Logged 24:30 TOI, had 2 assists, with 5 SOGs.
#2 Max Talbot - Max loves to show up in big games. As we've been preaching, the 1st goal will win, and Max provided it. He was also huge on face-offs.
#3 Shared by our 2 goalies on the ice: Marc-Andre Fleury and Michalek Island. The only goals given up by MAF were aided by 2 questionable penalty calls, and were great goals by St Louis. Michalek had 57 blocked shots in the game, and added 5 SOGs. Despite the PP not scoring again, he appears to be getting comfy in his new role at the point on the 1st unit.
Let's Go Pens! In Colin Campbell, we trust! Free Chris Kunitz!
btw: if you would like to play: Will He Not, or Will He Be Suspended, play along with the NHL Wheel of Justice.
thanks to Rando Mango for tipping us on that one.
Sidney Crosby is skating with the team this morning.
James Neal will never ever ever score another goal.
PP is now 0 for April.