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For a team that was virtually dead and buried by the Pittsburgh media, which resorted to more than one member seriously suggesting the Penguins trade Sidney Crosby, I guess Ray Shero gets the last laugh for now. Because I'm pretty sure the Pens needed old #87 last night.

Yes, Crosby is once again the best player in the world, even getting praised as the better player in the end by the Washington Post. He once again stands alone, says Scott Burnside of ESPN. It's amazing how one game can change so many people's minds, but that should speak to just how great of a game Sidney Crosby played last night in the Penguins' 6-2 slaughter of the Capitals.

He scored the first goal, he scored the last goal, and he set the pace for an outcome that many hoped for but few anticipated. He scored 13 points in the series and leads the NHL with 12 playoff goals. With a little help from his friends, most notably Marc-Andre Fleury, Craig Adams, Bill Guerin, and "Willis" Gonchar, Crosby and Company now move on to the league's Final Four for the second time in as many years. And Bruce Boudreau can take as much time as he needs to come up with injury excuses.

Sure, Simeon Varlamov came down to Earth like a comet hurling from the sky, but for every mistake the Capitals made, the Penguins took advantage, down to the great Alexander Ovechkin turning the puck over and Crosby scoring the Pens' final goal. Washington had 19 giveaways, the Penguins had four. Washington had four penalties resulting in two Penguin goals. The Penguins had zero penalties. Zero!

For a Penguin fan, it was as satisfying as a second-round win could possibly be. For Washington, they have an entire offseason to come up with reasons why Ovechkin is better than Crosby. But once again, much like fans of the Ravens and Flyers, Pittsburgh got the last laugh in this heated rivalry. It sure is a great time to follow Pittsburgh sports. And in honor of the win, a celebratory "California Soul" will be presented.

Carolina or Boston await, to be decided starting at 8 PM tonight [preview]. It's either Bill Cowher or New Englanders in the next round. But I'm guessing Pittsburgh will continue to be upset at seeing a sight like this should the Canes advance:

That's OK. We've got a coach who supports our team.

Go Pens.

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Steve said...

It's nice having a game like that for a change instead of stressing out until the final horn.

Reminds me of the Cup clinching win against the North Stars where it was a laugher blowout before the 1st period was over.

They deserved that kinda ending though, seeing as how it could have and should have happened at least twice already in this series. All the hardwork eventually paid off and their goalie finally ran out of answers.

Jeff_King_Fan said...

Just like i said when they were down 0-2, the pens will still win the series in 7. someone owes me a beer!

Seriously, though this has got to be one of the best wins in Penguin history. Granted it was only second round, but going against a main rival, and having the battle of the stars. I pray they get Carolina, but i think they would be the favorite against anyone right now.

Steve said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Steve said...

Your're right. Great prediction. go ahead and buy yourself a beer on me. ;)

Beating our two biggest rivals back to back, with one being a game 7 on the road, has to instill even greater confidence with this team.

I'm not a big fan of getting Carolina however. They've always been a thorn in our side and home ice doesn't really mean as much late in these playoffs, as both teams are now confident they can win on the road.

Besides, Carolina now has Cahr-Pahr! on their side.

Brian said...

There's no reason to continue making fun of Bill Cowher.

Anonymous said...

That couldn’t have gone any better, Crosby shutting all those people up. Especially stealing the puck from ovechkin and scoring on the breakaway. I was amazed at how driven he was at the end of game 6. Did you see his face when he scored the tying goal at the end of the third in that game? It was the scariest, most intense expression ever. He probably would have scored if he was out there by himself. He’s the most determined athlete I’ve ever seen. Malkin is probably more skilled at this point, but he doesn’t have that. No one does. Not like that. If he has to, Crosby will carry this entire team on his back to a Stanely Cup, making that face the entire way.

The Mike Wise article says it perfectly. Glad to see that's coming out of DC too.

Jeff_King_Fan said...

in other words, crosby found his inner Jeff King.

AJ said...

Still amazes me how the Caps can almost let the Pens score enough to put up a chili goal in a game 7. Somewhere the ghost of Dave Thomas is breathing a sigh of relief.

Total domination. I don't think my heart could have made it through another OT.

tola'at sfarim said...

but you have to read through a page of Mike Wise's hallucinations abt how everyones a xenophope and a racist if they dislike ovie. god that was tedious. can someone explain where he came up with that idea? and what is malkin according to him?

Adam said...

Funny the latest Pitt arrests are flying under the radar here...

Unknown said...

Why can't we make fun of Cowher? I made fun of him when he was the coach of the Steelers. That doesn't mean I still don't respect what he did for the team and city.