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Pens/Canucks reflections

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Greetings, Pens fans.

So what if the Vancouver Canucks were at the end of a lengthy road trip Wednesday at Consol Energy Center? The fact of the matter is, a lot of positive things took place tonight for the Penguins.

- The Penguins’ penalty killing unit was perfect tonight and produced Max Talbot’s shorthanded goal. While the power play continues to struggle, it can’t be dismissed that, under Dan Bylsma, the Penguins’ penalty killing has been terrific.

- Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 29 of 30 shots, had the crowd chanting his name in the third period and again looked like a goaltender who has found himself. This is the most encouraging of developments for the Penguins.

- OK, there were some bad things about this game. Every now and then, stats pop out on you. Against the Canucks, Evgeni Malkin was 0-for-8 on faceoffs. Craig Adams was 0-for-7. Ouch.

- Vancouver coach Alain Vigneault didn’t go out of his way to praise the Penguins, instead showing his displeasure with the Canucks after the game.  Here’s what he had to say: “I think we had an opportunity tonight with a win in this building to make this a real good road trip. We come out of it at .500, so we should have been able to do better.”

- This wasn’t an overly exciting game, but there was one exciting moment. Seeing Sidney Crosby on a lengthy breakaway against Roberto Luongo – with the crowd on its feet – was great stuff.

Until next time, you stay classy, Pittsburgh.

- Josh Yohe

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Comments

  1. Shawn says:

    Great win.

    As bad as the PP has been, the PK has been that good and then some.

    What does Max have to do get a chance on the second line?

    Cooke has no real chemistry with Malkin, reunite him with Kennedy on the 3rd line and move Max up. Max can be Malkin’s Bob Errey.

    Two penalty calls were just egregious in this game. The NHL really has to clean up the officiating. It was always the worst of the big 4 and it’s slipped considerably even from there.

    Hamhuis saw Rupp coming and intentionally turned his back to draw the boarding call. Players do this ALL THE TIME now. Jason Pominville did the same thing to Hjalmarrson. Pominville got what he deserved. Hjalmarsson did not. Players will dive face first in front of pucks, of course they will turn their back to make themselves more vulnerable if it will draw a call. The refs have to stop rewarding players who do this…or the league should consider supplemental discipline against them. You can’t make an honest effort to keep players safe when guys game the system to draw calls.

    But the one small change the NHL could make to make it’s officiating less of a joke…

    The refs will NEVER change a call once they blow the whistle. I shouldn’t say never, because one time in 20 years, I actually did see it. The ref blew the whistle, the other ref skated over and chatted with him and he announced “no call” and had a neutral zone faceoff.

    Last night, everyone in the building EXCEPT the one ref who made the call knew that it was the prone stick and not Dupuis who tripped the Canuck in the neutral zone. At least one of the other officials must have seen it…heck, the refs own stuttered speech and body language indicated that even he knew he made the wrong call as he announced it, but…the whistle blew…we have to call SOMETHING no matter how wrong, right?

    No. The NHL should allow (DEMAND) that officials huddle up before a call is made and give the other officials the chance to correct a bad call.

    Instead, the league and it’s officials worry more about saving face than getting it right.

  2. Nathan says:

    Bylsma’s the best coach I’ve seen, Fleury’s the top goaltender in the league, and Michalek is probably the best defenseman going these days. Did you see that game?!?

    Seems reasonable to me.

  3. Ryan says:

    It was nice to see the Pens get a big ‘W’ in what could be considered a “measuring stick” game. Watching them win was also that much sweeter after reading the following quote from the Canuck goaltender when asked of his “dominance” against the Eastern Conference this year prior to the game:

    “You do the math, I don’t know what to tell you,” said Luongo. “I can’t answer that for you without being cocky.”

    Also, for everyone that believes Fleury is overrated, what has Luongo won to considered “elite” as he is? Understandably, it takes more than a goaltender to win the Cup, much more. That does not change the fact that Luongo IS the most overrated goaltender in the NHL.

 
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