Big Lead Sports Bar

5/10/2008

THE BEAT GOES ON

PENGUINS 4

FLYERS 2

Yesterday, I picked the Penguins to beat the Flyers in six games. After watching the game on Friday night, I think my prediction was about five games too many, because this series is looking pretty lopsided.

The first period was a bit of a roller coaster, perhaps to due to the Pens' extended layoff. The pair of goals scored by Mike Richards were not exactly the stuff of legends: one was pretty much stopped by Marc-Andre Fleury, but somehow trickled in; the other was due to a traffic jam of Parkway rush hour-sized proportions. Said Ryan Whitney in the PG: "Their two goals were typical Flyer goals," Whitney said. "Throw it in front, and all of a sudden, it's in the net."

But despite the ups and downs of the period one, when the clock hit 0:00 the Penguins were in possession of a 3-2 lead that they would not surrender. The Evgeni Malkin goal with seconds left had to be a morale-killer.

In the second, Malkin got up from a crushing hit, took a pass, and blasted a slapshot goal from about 10 feet away. It instantly took a place among the most memorable goals in Penguin history. I've never seen a slapshot taken so close to the goalie - I literally laughed out loud at the mere attempt. It was vintage Malkin. Watch the clip at 6:09 of the Game One highlight video below:

The third period got a little chippy near the end, but the Zambelli-level fireworks everyone expected never really developed. It was your basic, run-of-the-mill, blahse Scott Upshall/Derian Hatcher nonsense, with more jawing and facewashing than punching. There was no scoring, but we can't have any beef with that, because the Penguins had already provided more than enough. 4-2, and one game to none. Drive home safely.

Game Notes:

--The TV broadcast on Versus had this annoying habit of cutting to a Flyers fan party at the Wachovia Center after each Flyer goal. How about showing a reaction after they give up a goal or four? I know I'm not the only Pens fan with that request.

--I just was not feeling that Versus broadcasting team of Joe Beninati and Darren Eliot last night. I've heard more emotion from video game hockey announcers.

--Brooks Orpik had a fantastic game, with six hits, although the penalty when he leveled Hartnell in the second seemed a bit ticky-tacky.

--To add insult to injury, the Baby Pens knocked the Philadelphia Phantoms out of the AHL playoffs last night. A Philadelphia team losing in the playoffs? I know, I'm floored too.

--Too bad Daniel Briere didn't make the trip. The Flyers could've used him.

--I realize the Pens are playing at an unbelievably high level. You have to be in order to post a 9-1 record 10 games into the second season. But you have to admit, they're getting some lucky breaks along the way. In round one, it was a damaged Daniel Alfredsson. In round two, Sean Avery almost died. And now, the Flyers lose top defenseman Kimmo Timonen to a blood clot. Assuming and hoping that they make the finals and play, let's say, Detroit, I'm predicting Johan Franzen will slip on a banana peel and miss the entire series.

--Had enough RJ Umberger coverage from Versus?

Yeah, Christine (brother of Craig) Simpson could've picked a better time to interview his parents than...I don't know....RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF GAME ACTION! It was reminiscent of the Monday Night Football "guest-in-the-booth" syndrome.

--The PG Empty Netters have their blow-by-blow account filled with links, photo, and videos.

--Rocky statue mission accomplished!

--A few weeks ago, A.J. wondered about what the Penguins' playoff song would be. And while I did hear "Zombie Nation" played, I think on behalf of all TV viewers that the following song becomes the Official 2008 Penguins Playoff Anthem. There's no other tune I can identify so closely with my Penguins playoff-viewing experience.

--Max Talbot was skating at morning practice today.

--Cook: If Penguins keep this up, Flyers will be cast aside quickly

--Smizik: Malkin, Crosby too tough an assignment

--Anderson: Flyers: Game 1 loss puts them in familiar spot

--Molinari: Malkin scores twice in Game 1 win over Flyers

--Rossi: Game 1: Malkin scorches Flyers, 4-2 (with Trib Photo Gallery)

--Prisuta: Flyers play a game they can't win

4 comments:

pens fan in philly said...

you seem to be pretty good at predicting the future... Wings' Franzen sits Game 2 with concussion-like symptoms
http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/playoffs2008/news/story?id=3390207

Michael said...

A little piece of me dies each time i see that damn dockers commercial.

AJ said...

Dockers commercial > Cotton Eyed Joe

P Niddy said...

i'd rather see that one than the mellencamp commercial