Sunday, March 16, 2008

Battle of Pennsylvania 07-08: Game 6

Another national broadcast on NBC for the Penguins and the Flyers. I am sure the suits at the Peacock network are upset that the game is not going to feature Sid Crosby. But the Penguins were determined to get their game plan and not stoop to the lowest common denominator.

So.. the game begins and I am fighting the hangover blues of a wild weekend. The Penguins come out firing in the first period knowing what is at stake. A shaky (and possibly tired) Biron lets in a soft goal to Malkin. That was Malkin's 40th of the year. Honestly, I haven't been keeping an eye on his goal totals, so when I saw the stats line on the screen, I was a little surprised. What is it with Malkin when Crosby is away? Malkin comes out of his shell when Crosby is out of the lineup, but disappears when he is relegated to the 2nd line. Speaking of streaky stuff, local sports guys warned that Sykora was streaky scorer, and boy were they right! Welcome back to the scoresheet, Sykora!
“That’s what you need when your top guy goes out,” said Ryan Malone, who had two assists while skating with Malkin and Sykora. “There’s no reason when Sid comes back that we can’t have the same desperation, the same attitude. He’s just going to add to us.”
This further frustrates the Flyers who are starting to look like the Flyers of last year. Boston wore them out last night.

1st intermission with NBC and I am really starting to like "Mad Mike" Milbury. Gotta laugh at his provoking commentaries.

Second period shows Biron in no real desire to play and the Penguins again go on the attack. Biron mishandles a rebound that Tyler Kennedy - KENNEDY hits in and gets replaced by "da Gangsta" Niittymaki.
Biron wasn’t happy with his play, or being lifted, saying, “When you get taken out of a game where your playoff life is on the line, you’re never happy about it.”
The Flyers had shown some spark of life as the only guy to show up was Patrick Thoresen. Even when you can't condone his attack after the whistle on Letang, at least he was getting noticed. He also helped set up a great centering pass to perennial Penguin-killer Knuble for the Flyers only goal of the game. After having lost Hatcher last night, the Flyers also look to have lost RJ "Benedict Arnold" Umberger as his knee was rolled under by Whitney.

In the third, with the threat looming of a real full on Flyers brawl when the Flyers get frustrated, the Penguins poured on the heat and added another "1st timers club" goal by Hal Gill. And Sykora added a final 7th goal to rub it into the Flyers noses remembering how the Penguins were badly beaten 8-2 in December.

Payback is a bitch... and now all is right with the world.

[Via: Yahoo! Sports]
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