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On location: Penguins 4, Blue Jackets 3, Game 3

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Looking ahead to faceoff …

Game: Penguins vs. Columbus Blue Jackets, Game 3, Stanley Cup playoffs, Eastern Conference quarterfinal

Series: 1-1

Time: 7:08 p.m.

Site: Nationwide Arena

TV, radio: Root Sports, NBC Sports (national), Fox Sports Ohio, 105.9 the X

Here’s the official live summary.

Here are TribLIVE’s Penguins page and our Chipped Ice blog. Rob Rossi, Josh Yohe and I are covering for the Trib, as well as staff photographer Chaz Palla. I’ll have the Tuesday column off this game.

As a bonus, here’s Matt Niskanen answering my question about how the Penguins look when they’re playing at their most desperate:

Author: Dejan Kovacevic

Dejan Kovacevic, a lifelong Pittsburgher, is an award-winning sports columnist for Trib Total Media covering the Steelers, Penguins, Pirates, Pitt and, recently, his fourth Olympics in Sochi, Russia. He also appears on WPXI-TV's 'Subway Final Word’ and hosts a weekly show on TribLIVE Radio. For 2011, he was named one of the country's top four columnists by the AP Sports Editors. For 2012, he was named one of the country's top three columnists by the National Headliners. For 2013, he was named the state's top columnist by the Keystone Press Awards and top columnist in Western Pennsylvania by the Golden Quills.


  1. theplanisworking says:

    First !!

    GO PENS !!

    GET THE ‘W’


  2. Brandie says:

    Three cheers for NITTY GRITTY DIRT BAND HOCKEY!!!!

  3. BillyBaduka says:


    Play smart, simple hockey and hustle for 60 minutes.

  4. scapper says:

    “Theplan” for head coach. Just write that on the board and let ‘em go!

    Arena is going to be stoked for the biggest professional hockey game in Ohio history tonight (sorry, Barons), and the Pens are just the team to weather the emotional lift and come out with a win. (Okay, or maybe not.)

    Anyone see DK’s tweets today in response to the Pens’ tweeted response to his column? (Nice sentence. See why he is the professional and I’m am the drop-in commenter?) I think he was a bit too sensitive on that one. Pgh. sports reporters are golden in how they go after the local teams when they should. But there’s nothing wrong with the Pens tweeting that stat about Sid. PR is important, and someone was just doing his/her job. Just like DK did his.

    Sid is going to play huge tonight!

  5. theplanisworking says:

    + many on the Cleveland Barons reference.

    If we play “how many degrees of separation” with the Barons, they merged with the Minnesota North Stars, who then moved to Dallas.

  6. Karen22 says:

    We’re headed over to a friend’s house to watch the game. I sure hope the Pens are on their BEST (game) behavior tonight so that I can be on mine. I’ve been known to embarrass myself…

  7. Pucknutz says:



  8. Karen22 says:

    I went to a few Barons games in the old Cleveland arena in my youth…That’s some nostalgia!

  9. scapper says:

    Denis Maruk and his mustache (and scoring talent). Nuff said.

    Was at a matinee at the old arena one Sunday and Dave Burrows took a slap shot that got deflected…right into my friend’s face in the B section behind the net. Had to go to the hospital. He was fine. I was jealous of both his black and blue face AND the call Dave Burrows made to his house the next night.

  10. scapper says:

    Meant to add that it was a Barons game.

  11. Rbilak says:

    - Do not want a Letang on 2nd power play either. I am sure he said “I have to keep my cool”and will proceed to take a couple idiotic penalties along with stupid passes. Letang will never learn. He is also profiled for penalties due to reputation, not gonna change.

    – no confidence in coach Dan, more confidence in Lt Dan for any Gump fans.

    – Dan got his wish as Conner is back, “Vertically Challenged” is all for Dan.

    – I know Sid and Geno are big part of issue too. For Dan to say they don’t need to score is simply idiotic. Imagine Bowman or Johnson saying that about Mario and Jagr.

    – Scuderi playing, another joke on the fans.

  12. BillyBaduka says:


    Me too.

    I still don’t have a voice after being at the game Sat.

  13. hockeymonster says:

    Brandiskaya…how goes it? Hope all is well.

  14. Dave G says:

    Buckle up?

    Nah. Time to BUCKLE DOWN.

    You know, the last time these Pens won a cup, they were diving all over the ice blocking shots.

    They’re so bad at diving now that they cant even get a penalty called against them for doing it.

  15. A1CMcG says:

    Hey need you guys to be my eyes for some reason fox sports thought it was better to air a meaningless reds game instead of a Stanley cup playoff game.

  16. Purple Moose says:

    Oh my, maybe its the start we need being down.

  17. Dave G says:

    What a disgrace. 2-0 CBJ less than four minutes in.

  18. Purple Moose says:

    2-0. Have no fear, we have Craig Adams to create some offensive chances.

    What what Coach One Plan Dan is discussing during the timeout……who is going to be mustache boy for April?

  19. Florida Steeler says:

    Great beginning by Fleury. If they lose to this team, Shero and Bylsma must go.

  20. Viv says:

    Pick your poison – lose to Columbus in the first round or to the flyers in the second.

  21. Purple Moose says:

    Will we have more giveaways or shots tonight? I count 5 giveaways so far tonight.

  22. Purple Moose says:

    Much rather lose to Columbus than Philly. This conversation is a shame to be having.

  23. Sam says:

    So we can see what is wrong with this team but the question is why?

  24. Dom says:

    We stink!

  25. Purple Moose says:

    How much time you have Sam. Lets start with coaching and then turn to the lousy leadership on this team and the fragile psyche that they exhibit.

  26. Dom says:

    He he he, purple moose.

    That’s a funny name.

  27. hockeymonster says:

    Lets see if a 2 goal lead can stick…

  28. Sam says:

    How do go from winning the cup to not being able to handle the pressure?

  29. Dom says:

    How many times is going to attempt to pass it from side to side on every power play?

  30. Florida Steeler says:

    Thought we had the two best players in the NHL. Could someone please tell me who they are and where are they???

  31. Dom says:

    Would be nice if Sid or Geno did something.

  32. hockeymonster says:

    I blame jandy

  33. john says:

    Is there a rule that prohibits the Penguins from going to the net? Just desire, then huh?

  34. Dom says:

    You beat me to it.

  35. Purple Moose says:

    Has a coach ever been fired in the middle of the playoffs?

    Wonder if Coach One Plan Dan will cancel practice tomorrow? The boys need a rest.

  36. DJ says:

    Too much perimeter. Got to disrupt their box on the PP.

    How about a guy in the high slot, Dan?

  37. Dom says:

    I blame Mario Lemieux and Ed Rendell. If they wouldn’t have worked so hard at keeping the team Pittsburgh, we wouldn’t be sitting here watching this monstrosity.

  38. hockeymonster says:

    Fleury hasn’t deserved much criticism but those 1st goals were on him. A weak POP shot turn into juicy rebounds. Then sharp angle puck shove turns into easy pickins…We just cant have that. Looks like he’s simmarin down.

    P. S. Are sid n geno really gonna let the columbus effin blue jackets efff up their prime years?

  39. Milo Hamilton says:

    Looks like James Neal is getting ready to do something really stupid.

  40. hockeymonster says:

    I liked that hit. Still time left on clock. Eff dubinsky. How we could’ve messed up those 3 on 2’s and 2 on 1 is beyond me.

  41. poz says:

    You are right Moose. To be having this conversation – is a shame…and a disgrace. Shockingly, I read that Bylsma said something like “I don’t necessarily have any answers” after the second game loss.

    And it’s understandable.

    One goal from effort by any of these Pens stars and it’s a different game. Instead, they get outworked and knocked back – on their wallets – by a team that is goofy over the prospect of dominating the mighty Pens.

    And the BJ come out and dominate the Pens in the first period.

    But not over yet – the dreaded two goal lead.

    Pens get the next goal and it could change things.

    But if Crosby and Malkin continue to play all star hockey, and if the rest of the team turns the puck over with shocking regularity, then the Pens will be the talk of the playoffs – for the wrong reasons.

  42. scapper says:

    Ohio 4, Pittsburgh 0. This Monday night better pick up soon…

  43. Viv says:

    Every time the pens won the cup – they had grit on the first two lines, be it recchi, tocchet, or guerin – we have no grit on the first two lines. This team is not built for the playoffs – all finesse, no physical defenseman, we are not intimidating at all. Hate to say it but hockey, especially in playoffs, is all about intimidation and now our talent is not intimidating.

  44. Milo Hamilton says:

    Never said anything about any specific hit.

  45. hockeymonster says:

    Eff dubinsky anyway.

  46. The Gunner says:


    The Pirates sure look lifeless tonight.

  47. Jandy says:

    Trust me, A1, you don’t want to see this…

  48. Jandy says:

    Matt Niskanen and Marc Andre Fleury

  49. Jandy says:

    He’s right, you know. It’s all my fault.

  50. Milo Hamilton says:

    Nice enzuigiri by Jenner. Qwen Hart would have been proud.

  51. Jandy says:


  52. Jandy says:

    I’ll second that.

  53. hockeymonster says:


  54. Milo Hamilton says:

    Yeah, I’m trying not to watch them until I have to. Looks like that’ll be next week.

  55. Jandy says:

    I’ve NEVER liked Sid and Geno on the same PP

  56. Purple Moose says:

    So Brooks Orpik is a better hockey player than Jack Johnson??? Now I understand why this coach keeps playing Craig Adams and Rob Scuderi.

  57. Dom says:

    Post of the year nominee.

  58. Milo Hamilton says:

    Just another lazy spring evening at Bushwood.

  59. Jandy says:

    Suit me up, da**it!

  60. Brandie says:

    Quite busy Monsteroskie! Waiting for The Pens to do something that involves playing an entire, offensively and defensively complete game of hockey. Hope all is well with yinz!

  61. Milo Hamilton says:

    I do like Ike though.

  62. Florida Steeler says:

    Hey, Ike just hit a grand salami.

  63. Milo Hamilton says:

    Sorry about that Dom, that was meant for the Monday Night Raw thread. :)

  64. Dom says:

    With the way we’re playing, it makes me wish it was back in the 90s when we had Lemieux and Jagr. Or back a few weeks ago when we had Sid and Malkin. Whatever happened to those two?

  65. Jandy says:

    Switched by aliens

  66. Milo Hamilton says:

    Not going to single anyone out for poor play because that would be unfair to everyone else.

  67. Milo Hamilton says:

    I will say something I’ve had to say far too many times this year. A lot of this could be solved by simply trying harder. That’s sad.

  68. hockeymonster says:

    point milo

  69. theplanisworking says:

    Not watching or listening to the game.
    Is it really as bad as I think?
    Or as bad as reading here?

  70. Purple Moose says:

    I know Foligno got a penalty for spraying Fleury but any and every other team in the playoffs would have put him on his a$$, but not the soft Pens.

  71. Sarah says:

    Hello from San Mateo Peeps…..not liking what I am hearing!…..

  72. Jandy says:

    YOu’re so right, Milo. Watch the Pens. There’s no puck pressure, they skate lackadaisically, it’s like they don’t care if they win or lose. Then watch the Jackets. Passion, Intense puck pressure…they skate like the mean business. It’s almost like the Pens WANT to lose.

  73. Jandy says:

    Nothing pretty about it.

  74. Jandy says:

    Don’t watch, Sarah, it’s not pretty at all.

  75. Dom says:

    Goal!!!! Less than one sec to go.

  76. Jandy says:

    no way! Did I just see that?

  77. The Gunner says:

    I agree, Ike poked a big one tonight.

  78. Jandy says:

    Holy crap

  79. hockeymonster says:

    Take that dj, sarah, jandy, hippo, dejan etc etc etc…

  80. Dom says:

    I think that was a diddy mirage.

  81. Milo Hamilton says:

    Goal by Orpik breaks a 103 minute 16 second scoreless drought.

  82. Jandy says:

    Well, he just got closer lol

  83. Milo Hamilton says:

    Looked more like Orr than Orpik.

  84. hockeymonster says:

    low shot sneaks by bob

  85. Jandy says:

    hey Monster Mash, suck my big toe after I step in dog doo :P

  86. Lad 9 says:

    Clearly, 44 should be in the slot on the PP. :)

  87. DJ says:

    What did I say about the high slot?

    Great pass by Bennett and Orpik wrister huge.

  88. Sarah says:

    Yay Bruce!!!!

  89. hockeymonster says:

    thats not cool

  90. Jandy says:

    Nope, it sure isn’t.

  91. theplanisworking says:

    Hey! What did I do, pal?
    I just asked a question!
    I didn’t criticize anyone/thing.

    Heck, I was the first one on the thread with the pep talk!
    Putin, you are in trouble now! ;)

  92. DJ says:

    ANYONE in the high slot.

  93. Jandy says:

    Suit me up!! Da**it!!

  94. DJ says:

    How about some of our D-men cruising down Broadway once in a while, fellas?

    Orpik taking a page from Jack Johnson.

  95. DJ says:

    There will be blood and bodies flying for sure.

    And then you’ll skate calmly out of the pack, Jands.

  96. hockeymonster says:

    And why hasn’t disco put orpik on the PP?

  97. BillyBaduka says:

    Where are Ty and Danny when you need them?

  98. BillyBaduka says:


  99. DJ says:

    Ya know, I could do the same thing every 4 years as well, HM.

    [smiley face]

  100. Milo Hamilton says:

    Noonan !

  101. DJ says:

    Ha! Laddy beat you to it up above, HM.

  102. BillyBaduka says:

    This narrative should just go away.

    C’mon Monster, you’ve got more to say than dredge this up.

    Even scapper said he was disappointed with the Pens play this morning.

    None of the folks you mentioned want the Pens to lose.

  103. Dom says:

    That’s game.

  104. DJ says:

    Loved that we forced a little action there late.

    We’ve been so riduculously predictable on postioning. High time we went to those areas we usually ain’t.

  105. Jandy says:

    UGH that goal was a back breaker

  106. J Walter Weatherman says:

    I feel comfortable going on record with the opinion that Shero should be fired for his past offseason. His decision to sign Letang and Scuderi to those deals has been nothing less than a complete debacle.

  107. Jandy says:

    Ok now it’s Scuds turn to score a goal.

  108. hockeymonster says:

    You’re right. Good one ladster!

  109. Milo Hamilton says:

    Good chance he scores before some people who shall remain nameless.

  110. Purple Moose says:

    What percent of Crosby’s passes this series have actually connected with a Penguin?
    A. 25%
    B. 15%
    C. 10%
    D. None of them

  111. Lad 9 says:

    Thanks Monster Mash. Goal!

  112. Dom says:

    You called it!

  113. Jandy says:

    OK so i was close, it was PM :)

  114. J Walter Weatherman says:

    Amazing. Traffic in front of the net produces a goal. What a revolutionary concept.

  115. J Walter Weatherman says:

    That was a great shot!

  116. Jandy says:


  117. Dom says:

    I never lost faith in them.

  118. Jandy says:

    Looks like Bob is rattled…keep him off balance, boys!

  119. Jandy says:

    None of the above?

  120. hockeymonster says:

    We should start game 4 down 2 goals.

  121. Lad 9 says:


  122. Jandy says:


  123. J Walter Weatherman says:

    Neal with a great play to screen Bob!!!

  124. Jandy says:

    just wow

  125. theplanisworking says:


  126. Dom says:

    Ollie Ollie oven free!

  127. Jandy says:

    chant it Laddie!

  128. Jandy says:

    that’s an idea!

  129. Purple Moose says:

    I knew it all along, lol

  130. Lad 9 says:

    It worked. BOBBBBBBBIEEEEEE! BOBBBBBBBIEEEEE! (Can’t very well chant Bobrosky…or Cueto)!

  131. Purple Moose says:

    I take it back.

  132. theplanisworking says:

    Gamecast frozen.

    Pens score 3 goals in 3 minutes?
    WOO HOO !!!


  133. Milo Hamilton says:

    OK, there’s Neal. Now, about those other effin stars.

  134. hockeymonster says:

    You done being a b#$$lady?

  135. Jandy says:


  136. Jandy says:

    effn right!

  137. DJ says:

    BB: HM’s just bustin’ us.

    Broad shoulders here. The true fans (and I include YOU) can take it.

  138. Jandy says:

    a word to the wise, Monster Mash, dahling, i give as good as i get :)

    But, yeah…for now :*

  139. Jandy says:

    then I got it right :)

  140. hockeymonster says:


  141. Milo Hamilton says:

    Maata getting it all the way.

  142. J Walter Weatherman says:

    It’s not fair to expect the Pens to dominate consistently like they have after the last CBJ goal. It is fair to expect them to play with that kind of effort. Milo hit on this earlier, but that’s what is so frustrating about this team.

  143. Jandy says:

    well, in that case, after last week, my shoulders are broad…so…OK MM, I’ll put the b*chlady mask away lol

  144. DJ says:

    I really can spell.

  145. Jandy says:

    But it IS fair to expect their stars to show up…and that hasn’t happened…yet…

  146. Sarah says:

    For Fs sake I cannot keep up every time I refresh we SCIRE….?????

    So everybody BUT Sid n Geno have scored??? Good lord!!!!

  147. J Walter Weatherman says:

    Sweet. Further proof that Letang and Scuderi shouldn’t be playing. Good coaches know when to make those decisions.

  148. hockeymonster says:

    They called embellishment all season…did a sniper get him?

  149. Milo Hamilton says:

    Very lazy by Letang.

  150. Jandy says:

    of course, when you’re not in a hurry and Jandy disease gets ya…

  151. DJ says:

    Broad shoulders and 9 wides.

    Love it.

  152. Jandy says:

    Sid, geno, and Flower ;)

  153. Jandy says:

    shhhh! don’t tell everyone ;X

  154. Milo Hamilton says:

    Sutter, Stempniak & Maata scoring in a 2:13 span. And we had no goals in 103 minutes. Go figure.

  155. Jandy says:


  156. theplanisworking says:

    Beats the alternative of scoring no goals……..

    Happy they are winning, but maddening to watch……

  157. Jandy says:

    My poor heart…

  158. J Walter Weatherman says:

    Holy poop. The Pens know how to make it interesting, if nothing else.

  159. Milo Hamilton says:

    Pretty much just like they drew it up.

  160. hockeymonster says:

    haha…whew…i hope you kept hands and arms in on that ride.

  161. Jandy says:

    I think I wet myself lol

  162. J Walter Weatherman says:

    What was Martin trying to do on that last play? Whatever it was, it failed.

  163. Lad 9 says:

    Survival! Whew. Good comeback but need to play better.

  164. Lad 9 says:


  165. scapper says:

    I would like to remind any readers of what I wrote before the game.

    “Arena is going to be stoked for the biggest professional hockey game in Ohio history tonight (sorry, Barons), and the Pens are just the team to weather the emotional lift and come out with a win. (Okay, or maybe not.)”

    Hey, let me gloat a little! Last time I was right on a prediction was when Pierre LaRouche was still playing.

  166. Andrew says:

    I’m turnpike with truck full of pitchfork and torches, should I turn around?

  167. theplanisworking says:

    Well, I guess coach Tomlin was right ………..
    “style points don’t matter”.
    Now about passing those 5 Lombardis instead of 5 rushing titles.

    Oh wait ……….

  168. Jandy says:


  169. Jandy says:

    yeah…but don’t throw them out just yet…

  170. Jandy says:


  171. Jandy says:

    good night Loonies, hope the next game is a bit easier on my heart :)

  172. DJ says:

    Just think if we’d have gone just one more OT in that BOS series.

  173. theplanisworking says:

    I have plenty in my warehouse.

  174. hockeymonster says:

    Didn’t wanna jinx it during the game but that was the best game I’ve seen PM play in a looong time. Hope he keeps it going.

  175. hockeymonster says:

    sweet dreams

  176. DJ says:

    Jandhi is collecting for her garage.

    To then sell to Plan.

  177. theplanisworking says:


  178. Sarah says:

    So how many good minutes did they play tonight?
    Kinda glad I didn’t see it.

  179. BillyBaduka says:

    Gloat away!


  180. hockeymonster says:

    They were actually quite good whole game. If fleury doesn’t leave rebounds its a total different game. But flower was huge and got better during game.

  181. BillyBaduka says:


  182. BillyBaduka says:


    I’d guess they were playing desperate for around 20-25 min

  183. Brandie says:

    Excellent to see The Pens won. The win obviously was not pretty, but it is a win nonetheless. Please sit Letang, Scuderi, and anybody else who tries to be a one man show. Need to play 3 periods of steady smart hockey.

    This team should come with a warning from the Surgeon General: Not for those with seek constitutionfs or the faint of heart, as watching the Penguins could cause extreme joy followed by extreme cursing, chewing of nails, and gnashing of teeth. Wonder if they make a medication that helps you taper down from playoff hockey until you whit caring altogether? Oh I know…it’s called mediocrity. I reaaly hope the Pens don ‘t get detailed by that monster yet again. ;)

  184. Brandie says:

    Sorry about the typos. I am tired.

  185. BillyBaduka says:

    Thanks DJ.

    You’re right and I enjoy Monster’s hockey insight.

    Definitely like his 2 PP ideas.

    I just took out some of my frustration at the game to that point on the post.

  186. Andrew says:

    I’ll get a room in Wexford.

  187. Sarah says:

    It really does sound like an excruciating game to watch !

    Props to all Peeps for sticking it out!!!

    Here’s hoping this breaks Columbus’ back. What a 3 minute collapse.

  188. theplanisworking says:

    Nice. :)

  189. DJ says:

    Collapse would be the Jackets’ view.

    We really stepped up and pressured in 3rd period.

    Been a long time since I’ve seen that.

  190. Derek says:

    Wow! NOTHING is good enough for you people, they win the game and all you can do is complain! Why don’t you move to the top of a mountain and stop bothering people. I am positive that mo matter what any of you do as a profession you’re average to terrible at it but you have the nerve to piss and moan like this? You don’t deserve a team with any talent on it.

  191. Sarah says:

    Yeah I guess I can’t really say DJ….but 3 in 2:13…..dunno that ain’t good!

  192. Karen22 says:

    That was completely insane! Capped off by the Pirates’ walkoff after blowing the lead late, tying it up late, & another Walker walkoff. Totally opposite from what happened Saturday night. Sleep well, loonies!! :)

  193. Sarah says:

    Ok I’m looking at stats now and BB has less than 10 mins?
    Why TH is he still being Bylsma’d???

  194. Sarah says:

    OK finally seeing some highlights, and watching Orpik toe-drag through the slot and find a corner while the Pens crash the front of the net.
    Have no words….

    But in related news, hell froze over and a unicorn just trotted into my hotel room!
    A really pretty silvery one too!


  195. Bizrow says:

    Tonight, life is good

    Lets see what happens tomorrow ;-)

  196. Mike says:

    As I saw on some boards, Jokinen-Malkin-Neal = Fedotenko-Malkin-Sykora 2.0, a line built for regular season greatness. Like 2009, Malkin seems prime to bust out. He just needs Talbot 2.0. That’s Joe Vitale. And, he needs Bylsma to have the guts to do what he did in 2009.

    Malkin was so much better in the third. His last shift of the second was with Neal and VITALE, the shift that preceded the Orpik goal.

    History is right there, waiting to repeat itself. Sykora off, Talbot in. Jokinen off, Vitale in. Paging dan Bylsma.

  197. Sarah says:

    I believe you mean Tom Fitzgerald

  198. Jandy says:

    Did you get a ride???

  199. Jandy says:

    Sad thing is Derek, Pens didn’t deserve to win that game last night.

    Where’s your mountain?

  200. hockeymonster says:

    Thanks BB and gang. Missed this last night.

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