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Pens Win Fights but Not the War, Lose to Flyers 3-2

Flyers blog: Broad Street Hockey

How can a team look so good one period and then completely lose itself by the end of the game?  For the second game in a row the Penguins lost the lead, giving up three straight Friday night to the Flyers before notching one keep-it-interesting goal with less than a minute left to at least give Pens fans a glimmer of hope before time expired.

For a game that started out with back-to-back fights in less than 60 seconds, the tempo took a serious hit by the midway point of the third period.

That and more after the jump.

By the time the Flyers skated away from Consol Energy Center with the win, it was easy to forget how good the Penguins looked earlier in the night.  Kris Letang's first period goal was just about as pretty a goal as you'll ever see, courtesy of a strong rush into Philly's zone and a bang-bang play from the sticks of Mike Comrie and Evgeni Malkin.

Things looked good after just that first period.  The Pens had a small lead, the Flyers were seriously limited in offensive chances (only four first-period shots) and the Pens were making the most of their rush with a total of 10 shots on goal. 

As Hooks said in the game thread, "Letang giveth, Letang taketh away."  That was the unfortunate circumstance in the second period when, on the power play, Tanger lost the puck and the Flyers managed a shorthanded rush back down on Fleury.  Even though Letang did a solid job of breaking up Mike Richards' rush, it was Alex Goligoski who got the blame as Claude Giroux left him in the dust to receive a centering pass from Richards for an easy breakaway goal.

Then, with about seven minutes remaining in the second, former Penguins product Daniel Carcillo managed to get the top of his stick on a Ville Leino shot that somehow, in an almost defying-logic sort of way, beat Fleury under the pads for a Flyers 2-1 lead.  Giroux's third period power-play goal put the game out of reach at 3-1 until Tyler Kennedy at least notched another goal on the season when Pittsburgh opted for the extra attacker.

The 3-2 final score left it looking like a closer game than it really was, but fact is the Pens lost this game in the second period.

This game marks two in a row for the Pens in the 'L' column and the home record now stands at a sub-par 2-4.  No time to focus on the negatives though as the Pens head off to Carolina for a 7:00 game against the Canes on Saturday.  The game may lacks its Staal vs. Staal flair with Jordan still on the mend, but the Penguins will definitely look to rebound with Brent Johnson back between the pipes.

Comment of the night from PensAreYourDaddy:

What's wrong with Hartnell, other than just that he’s Hartnell?