Huge win for the Penguins tonight over the Caps.
Despite a slow start, the Penguins get on the board first with Tom Kuhnhackl making a nice spinning pass to a wide-open Bryan Rust who makes a nice forehand deke on Braden Holtby.
Rust goal pic.twitter.com/Yxo0HGJHiN— Stephanie (@myregularface) March 20, 2016
Sidney Crosby harasses Dmitry Orlov, steals the puck, finds Trevor Daley cutting in. Daley goes backhand on Holtby.
Bad move by Marc-Andre Fleury chipping this puck right into Jason Chimera to make the score 2-1 Pens early in the second. The puck goes off his helmet and in the net. Some bad luck, but Fleury should have made an easier play and looked to chip the puck to the left or right and not straight up.
Chimera goal pic.twitter.com/dueR5z7wxO— Stephanie (@myregularface) March 20, 2016
NHL refs cost the Penguins a goal in the second period with a quick whistle. Sucks, but it happens. Less upset about that mistake than the refs losing control of the game with post-whistle scrums and fights.
another day another terrible outing for NHL refs https://t.co/dyXwM42EMv— Chad....... (@MadChad412) March 20, 2016
Gamely reminder that TJ Oshie is a piece of garbage
oshie punching a defenseless Crosby https://t.co/EqUfn8vKUx— Chad....... (@MadChad412) March 20, 2016
Despite dropping his gloves and punching a downed player several times in the head, Oshie would receive just a 2-miunte minor penalty and this is another prime reason why the NHL's feigned concern for head injuries is a joke.
Back to the actual game. Fresh out of the penalty box (for serving time for Mike Weber also attacking Bryan Rust for no reason), actual good hockey player Andre Burakovsky gets behind the defense and beats Fleury on a breakaway to tie the game at 2.
The Pens were reeling but hung tough, great pass from Matt Cullen to Tom Kuhnhackl to retake the lead just 42 seconds after the Burakovsky goal.
Kuhnhackl goal pic.twitter.com/EG6hKVImwr— Stephanie (@myregularface) March 20, 2016
In the 3rd period the ageless Matt Cullen makes it 4-2 Penguins with a shot that goes over Holtby's shouder, rolls down his back and finally ends up in the back of the net.
Chris Kunitz chases Holtby shortly thereafter. Nice flip pass from Kris Letang to Sidney Crosby, who out-races Brooks Orpik (lol) to a puck and makes a nice pass over.
Mike Weber makes another aggro, bad, dangerous play (a habit for him) and gets a 5-minute major + 10 minute misconduct for this hit on Rust. These Caps can be a pretty nasty, dirty bunch.
Justin Schultz scores his first goal as a Penguin, unleashing a rocket from the left side on the ensuing power play to push the lead up to 6-2
- Brooks Orpik and Patric Hornqvist looked like two deer fighting it out in front of the net on the Pens power play in the first. Don't see many physical battles like that these days. Orpik buried Hornqvist into his own goalie (real smart, Brooksy) and the Pens were able to get a shot off with Holtby knocked off balance, but they shot it right into him and he was able to make the save.
- Daley exhibits great instinct and has the wheels to cut to the net. He won't score a goal per game like he did this weekend, but hopefully he's able to do that with more regularity. It would also be wise to play Daley with Crosby more, since no forward in the league is as good at getting the puck back to the points as Sid.
- 12-game scoring streak for Crosby by virtue of his assist in the first. His resurgence is something to see right now.
- Another solid game for Ian Cole, got another assist today, played a 3-on-1 well defensively in the second, blocking shots on the PK, generally looking good. That will be big if Dumoulin has to miss time, they'll need more out of the other defensemen.
- Conversely, not a great game for Olli Maatta, who looks really slow and is prone to getting beat right now.
- What a player Matt Cullen is!
- And how about the Kuhn with a 3-point game? I wasn't sure about him at first, but he's grown into a very capable bottom-6 winger in no time at all.
- Justin Schultz rings one off the post when the score was 4-2, man if that'd gone in the roof would have blown off Consol.
- Alex Ovechkin knocked Brian Dumoulin out of the game in the 3rd with a heavy hit after Dumoulin made a pass. Nothing really wrong with it, but hopefully Dumo isn't too worse for wear. Also that was curious as it really was the first time Ovechkin was noticeable at all, very unusual for him in any game.
- After holding the Flyers to a season-low 16 shots yesterday, the Capitals also mustered what I believe is a season-low for themselves in shots today with 18. Impressive to play 2 of the best games of the year like that for Pittsburgh.
- Pens improve to a league-best 33-0-0 when leading after 2 periods.
Hey there, second place.
Hard-earned win for the Pens tonight. 6 games in a row, taking down division rivals left and right, things look pretty grand now. The team has a well-deserved day off tomorrow and a few days of practice before their next game on Thursday.