Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Legacies will be on the line tonight

PPG Paints Arena / MF
By: MF,

Here we sit in a place that is familiar, yet unfamiliar. The Washington Capitals have battled back to force a Game Seven at Verizon Center against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

The Penguins are no strangers to decisive Game Seven games and their track record on the road is reassuring, but in the playoffs statistics rarely prove to be useful in determining who will come out the victor. A Game Seven is almost a reset button a series, everything that has come to pass goes out the window and things are set at a 50-50 chance. Now that doesn’t mean that there are not favorites or underdogs. However, there is no clear way of knowing what team will come out with the win.

This franchise has been the underdog in many cases and sometimes the favorite. It doesn’t faze them and it shouldn’t. This Pittsburgh team has the depth, mindset, and passion for taking this game even with all they are dealing with, which include injuries; a defensive core that is showing cracks without Kris Letang; and being outshot every game. Yet with all that seems to stand against them, the Penguins are confident in their game, players, and coaching staff. Having that confidence will be critical if they are to secure a win.

Tonight, Marc-Andre Fleury must once again pull this team through the tough patches they will have in this game. It will happen and Fleury needs to stand strong once more for the Penguins.

The stars must show up and make a noticeable impact that includes Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and Phil Kessel. These guys need to kick things into another gear, find a way to energize this team and keep the Capitals on their heels throughout the game. They cannot do this alone, but with their energized gameplay, the rest of the team will follow suit.

Lastly, the defense must dig deep and find their rhythm. They will be without Letang and Trevor Daley, but they have proven to be up to the task before. Now they must step up once more and show that they are not broken and that in front of Fleury, they will not waver.

This game will either cement the Penguins dominance over the Capitals or show that the Penguins are too tired to repeat. Legacies are on the line and the Penguins are in control of what the narrative will be. 

Lets Go Pens!

The Pens lineup is as follows:

Guentzel - Crosby - Rust
Kunitz - Malkin - Kessel
Sheary - Bonino - Hornqvist
Wilson - Cullen - Rowney

Dumoulin - Hainsey
Maatta - Schultz
Cole - Ruhwedel

Fleury in the net!

Play by Play
PENS 2 Caps 0

3rd Period

0:33 - Fleury with a huge pad save!

2:11 - Empty net for the Caps.

2:26 - Caps ice the puck.

6:01 - Kessel and Malkin have a two-on-one chance. Kessel holds and takes the puck to the net. Holtby stops him and the Caps clear the loose puck.

7:12 - Kessel has a shot on an odd-man rush, but his stick snaps in two.

8:35 - Sheary and Hornqvist get a rush up ice. Sheary fires one on the net that is stopped and covered up by Holtby.

10:27 - S. Wilson and Orpik drop the gloves. It is broken up quickly.

11:10 - That brings an end to the power play. Good chances on that one. Kessel rang one off the post.

13:10 - Cullen and Hornqvist get a two-on-one rush. Holtby comes out to make the saves. Pens getting a power play. Carlson called for slashing.

13:58 - Fleury denies Orlov at the side of the net.

15:46 - HORNQVIST SCORES! Schultz pinches down to force a turnover and the puck bounces up to Hornqvist who backhands past Holtby! 2-0 Pens

17:05 - Crosby is robbed by Holtby who then denies Guentzel on the rebound chance.

18:44 - Bonino fights in front to get a shot off, but he is unable to get a stick on the puck.

19:22 - Wilson comes rushing in, but Dumoulin defends and knocks him off of the puck.

20:00 - We are back for the third period! The Pens must keep their foot on the pedal and never let up! Lets Go Pens!

2nd Period
0:00 - The second period ends and the Pens hold the 1-0 lead!

1:12 - Backstrom had an open net chance at a bad angle, but hits the goal post. Unreal.

2:24 - Fleury with another amazing save and the puck is loose in front. Eventually, the whistle is blown.

3:55 - Fleury holding the Caps at bay. The Pens need to continue to pressure and get shots on net. They need to extend their lead.

4:10 - Crosby and Guentzel get an odd-man rush. Crosby goes to Guentzel, but his shot just goes wide!

8:37 - Another solid penalty kill. Rowney with some great defensive work on that one.

10:37 - A huge penalty to kill off for the Pens. Hornqvist will visit the box for high sticking.

11:11 - RUST SCORES! Cole keeps the play alive and gets the puck to Crosby in the slot area! Crosby goes to Guentzel at the side of the net and he gets a pass through the center to Rust! Rust roofs it! 1-0 Pens

11:26 - Dumoulin with a huge hit to put Ovechkin on his butt. Up and down hockey.

13:06 - Fleury holds strong in front as Eller takes a few whacks at his pads.

16:42 - Much like the start of the first period, the Caps are pressuring and have the momentum. Fleury has been strong to start.

19:31 - Burakovsky fires on a rush and Fleury is out to glove that shot up.

20:00 - Second period time! The Pens need to build on the good of the first period and pressure Holtby! Lets Go Pens!

1st Period
0:00 - The first period ends and things are scoreless.

1:54 - That will be the end of that particular power play for the Pens.

2:32 - The Caps get three shorthanded chances, but Fleury denies them all.

3:54 - The Pens are getting a power play as Wilson heads to the box for tripping.

4:53 - Crosby makes an extra effort to keep the play alive in the offensive zone. He gets the puck to Rust who fires it quickly on the net. Holtby makes the save.

6:50 - Winnik out skates Rowney and is in all alone against Fleury. He fires one wide of the net.

8:35 - Hainsey with a good read to shut down an odd-man rush in the Caps favor.

10:54 - Fleury dives out to cover the puck as Carlson bares down on him.

12:02 - Things seemed to be even at the moment. The first goal will be huge.

12:13 - Successful penalty kill for the Pens. Shots are even at four apiece.

13:11 - A shot rings off the goal post for the Caps.

14:13 - A terrible penalty by Malkin who will take a seat for tripping. Caps to the power play.

14:21 - Malkin steals the puck and stickhandles to center to get a line on the net. Holtby gets a piece of the shot to send it wide.

15:16 - Pens have yet to find their game. They have gotten some offensive pressure going, but nothing sustained.

17:41 - Caps have put on the pressure early. The Pens need to get control of this before the Caps run away with things.

18:45 - The Caps come out with some speed. Fleury denies Carlson and is able to hold for a whistle.

20:00 - Game Seven is underway in Washington! The Pens legacy is on the line tonight and they have the power to write the narrative! Lets Go Pens! 

No comments:

Post a Comment