Thursday, February 08, 2007

Battle of Pennsylvania 06-07: Episode 7

One of the first things that FSN-Pittsburgh covered to begin the next edition of the rivalry saga was that the Wachovia Center crowd was really thin. It looked as if the Flyers faithful fained fickleness as the futile situation of the season.

The second thing that the FSR crew talked about was that the Penguins have never swept the Flyers in their rivalry's history, but have come close going 5-0-2. The Flyers have swept the Penguins twice in a season series.

The first period was smooth with both teams crashing the net, issuing the possible scoring solution. Jordan Staal, who is looking for a Calder trophy nomination, seemingly scored his 20th goal, but it was revoked for goaltender interference. But the kid Staal would not be denied and got a second shot at it almost half way into the period. The Penguins led 1-0.

Rumors about Forsberg leaving should also be annotated with the possibility that Simon Gagne will find a way out of Philadelphia. Especially, if Gagne plays like he did tonight scoring 2 power play goals to put the Flyers ahead 2-1.

*At this point, I had to get to a work meeting and have to rely on other post-game results*

The Penguins and Flyers settled things down in the second period. Not much happened, but Michel Ouellet scored on a power play goal to even things out 2-2. Third period was crucial as the momentum shifted from the Penguins back to the Flyers as it took a final gasp to charge into OT with Mike Knuble scoring one of his goals with an extra-attacker.

The shootout that followed the 5-minute OT was as frantic as the regular gametime. Therien played the odds and still listed Crosby in the shootout lineup despite being 0 for 7. Each shootout participant flew in at the opposing goal very quick hoping to not give Fleury or Niittymaki time to settle in. Crosby, now the anchor in the shootout lineup trio, used a similar move that he used in the All-Star skills competition and put it past Niittymaki for the only goal in the shootout.

All is right with the world.

Game Notes: Mark Recchi was recognized in the Arena during the first TV commercial break for reaching the 500th goal benchmark. Crosby has 14 goals and 16 assists in 17 games against the Flyers.

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