Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Pens Dominate Flyers, Win 6- 1
Watching the first 5 minutes of the game was like attending a boxing clinic taught by Mike Tyson, it was that intense. After Crosby scored the 1st goal of the game just a couple minutes in, 3 consecutive fights broke out 16 seconds apart. First it was Rupp vs. Asham, that was a pretty fair match. Asham took exception to a couple bone crunching hits Rupp put on Flyers D a couple shifts before. Then it was Cote vs. Godard, a true heavyweight tilt. Both had some good punches in there. But then Adams fought Carcillo and well Adams just got crushed.
I've never seen 3 fights on consecutive shifts, neither had any of the players, at least not at the NHL level. The fights set the tone for an intense game. Guerin scored the Pens 2nd goal on a puck Boucher couldn't cover. Carcillo scored the 1st Philly goal on the PP. And he looked pretty alive (unlike the rest of Philly) in this contest. He finished every check and had soccer been allowed in hockey, he could've had 2 goals.
The turning point in the game came after the Flyers cut the lead to 2-1 and they got on a power play, Staal stole the puck away and got a 2 on 1 break with Cooke. Staal held it and faked the pass and went top shelf on Boucher, 3-1 Pens. Getting a shorthanded goal like this took the energy out of the Flyers. In the 2nd period, Hartnell made yet another stupid play when instead of shooting a wide open look he tried a slap pass that ended up on an odd man break for the Pens. It went from Crosby to Letang to Staal for a wide open rebound goal. 4-1.
Pronger and Carle (their top d-men pairing) played a very poor game tonight. Pronger turned the puck over a couple times and it lead to some Pens goals. Boucher couldn't come up with the big save when he needed to. And Carter/Richards were invisible. When Carcillo is more noticeable offensively than either of those two, that's a problem. The Flyers were definitely gassed from the previous night but their 3rd/4th lines couldn't do anything positive for them.
Laperriere, Cote, Kalinski, and the others are very mediocore at best meanwhile the Pens had all 4 lines rolling consistently. Staal was an offensive monster all night and both Geno and Feds had goals and showed off some of the '09 playoff chemistry again. Geno was especially flying in the 3rd when he beat the Flyers team and was skating around like a ballerina, it's a scary site for opposing defenses.
The Flyers are playing with much less heart than they have in years past, and this game was evidence of that. Pronger's name is usually said a couple times a game after scrums or hits but he was silent all night. Expect the Flyers to be well rested and to come out with some passion on Thursday night. When you get abolished 6-1 the only way to go is up.
The newly formed PP with Geno rocking the left point and Kunitz/Guerin screening the goalie was quite effective in the 1st goal. They moved the puck around and Crosby had a wide open net to shoot at. The Flyers can fight but they didn't seem to bring that physical edge that helps them win games tonight. They wanted to play run and gun and it failed miserably.
-IN ERIC GODARD WE TRUST