Expected.

Game in a Relevant Quote:

“I just feel tired now if people are shocked. If it’s not for you, just don’t bloody watch it.”
-Chris Morris

My best attempt at Observations:

- Just… wow.

- These teams hate each other. A lot.

- Marc-Andre Fleury has never been worse in his career and Evgeni Malkin is still invisible.

- Sidney Crosby and Claude Giroux should not be fighting each other.

- Kris Letang and Kimmo Timonen should not be fighting each other.

- Arron Asham shouldn’t be playing for a while.

- James Neal shouldn’t expect his bank balance to be at its current level tomorrow.

- If the NHL wants to send a message, Dan Bylsma shouldn’t be holding on to that money either.

- Whoever thought Matt Cooke would be one of eight Penguins in a game with zero penalty minutes? Others include: Zbynek Michalek, Paul Martin, Pascal Dupuis, Richard Park, Brook Orpik (also confusing), Tyler Kennedy and Malkin.

- I’m wondering if Daniel Briere is only paid for playing in the playoffs because that makes it 101 points in 100 career playoff games.

- Speaking of impressive. Jaromir Jagr still has it. He is very, very good at hockey.

- It’s too bad James Neal decided to be a freaking idiot at the end of the game because he scored a gem and was Pittsburgh’s best offensive threat.

- Sorry for the lack of hockey analysis here but really that would being like analysing who’s wearing what skates in any other game. The Flyers just continue to outclass the Penguins and the Penguins continue to come unglued. What I’m more interested to see now is the long term fallout for the Pens from this series. This strikes me as the type of series that could pull apart a roster. They look dead in the water.

- I picked Paul Holmgren as my GM of the year and I think it’s clear why. His younger, rebuilt roster is laying a beating on the consensus most talented team in the NHL. Not only are they in better shape to win this season, but they’re built to win long term too with a core of Giroux, Schenn, Couturier and JVR ready to stick around long term. The Flyers may very well be the next Red Wings type of powerhouse from here on out.

- Game four goes Wednesday in Philly. We’ll see how that goes. I’m assuming it’ll be more of this with different starring characters.

My Three Stars:

1) Daniel Briere
2) Jaromir Jagr
3) Wayne Simmonds

Comments (15)

  1. This was the worst game imaginable for the Pens. We’re going to lose. If we’re going to lose, though, at least we could do it with some class. I’m all for fighting to change momentum – the perfect example was Talbot in the last series against the Flyers. But really, Asham? That looked like Todd Bertuzzi, only THE GUY WAS ALREADY DOWN. Neal’s hit didn’t look like it would do that much damage, but it was still late and incredibly uncalled-for. I’m a Pens fan, and I don’t expect it to happen, but if Bylsma sat some of the worst offenders from this game regardless of suspension I would be more proud of my team and organization than if we just delay the inevitable a game. Absolutely sickening.

  2. Great entertainment, I’ve been glued to each game from start to finish. Asham deserves to be suspended for the rest of the playoffs, that was really cheap.

  3. Schenn was asking for someone to get in his face, but you don’t do it by mimicking the thankfully forgotten Jesse Boulerice.

    And yeah, Shanahan would be wise to not rescind Dan Bylsma’s automatic one-game on Adams’ automatic one game. Adams didn’t do anything wrong, imo, but DB lost control of his team.

  4. The Pens really lost my respect after today’s game. They played dirty hockey and should be embarrassed by their conduct.
    Get the golf clubs ready. They’re done.

  5. That play by Jagr was maybe the highlight of these playoffs so far for me.

    Jagr fighting through a hold like that made me feel like I was in the last century again when both Jagr and I were both still young lads.

    • You need to watch TJ Oshie go through 4 Sharks players and basically gift David Backes a goal in Saturday night’s game. Easily the best scoring play of the 2012 Playoffs..

      As for this 3-ring circus that they called a Hockey Game, I thought Lavy had the right idea of keeping his goon squad off the ice right after James Neal started acting a fool, but Neal didn’t buckle down, and then started after Giroux!?!

      I dislike both teams, except for Hartsy, but how the Flyers didn’t rip Neals head off is amazing!?

      Also Crosby, and his antics are pathetic, he’s the most protected player in the History of the NHL. It’s a shame too, he’s no role model. (Jonathan Toews the face of Canada hockey)

  6. What will Shanahan do? Probably use his dart board again.

  7. haha fantastic article, loved the freshness. also – this series is a circus, but an entertaining one at that. cant say i saw it coming, kudos to the flyers though- they’ve earned it.

  8. As a Flyers fan, it’s gratifying to me to see the rest the hockey world taking notice of what me and my fellow fans have seen for years: what a dirty, classless team Pittsburgh has become. I never felt about the old Mario/Jagr Pens the way I feel about this current team. Gutless,self- entitlited scum.

  9. I really, really want to see a Philly-Boston series now.

  10. It’s amazing to me to think that the Flyer fans think they have any chance of advancing after they close this series out. MAF has been terrible in net, but they’re boy Bryz has been equally as bad. It seems like the two of them are trying to see who can let the softest goals in. MAF has no help in front of him, as has been apparent in the first 3 games of this series. Once the Flyers face a team that actually plays defense, their season will come to an abrupt halt.

  11. This game was just disgusting. Only word I can come up with.

    I felt earlier, after the game one, that there was something badly wrong with Pens’ game and it has been that way for a while.. but for god’s sake I didn’t expect it to lead to this. Now it’s not any more “something wrong with their game”; they do not have anything to be called “their game” at the moment.

    Disappointed with the fact that Bylsma haven’t done basically any real changes at all.
    Goaltending? I didn’t see any of that from anyone wearing Pen’s jersey (maybe expect few saves Johnson made). Defense? Hmmm.. Malkin? Who?

    Mixed feelings about Crosby. On the other hand he should 1) stay out of that stuff for many reasons, one being his own head, 2) try to focus on the important things as he most often is able to do. But then again, we all know he is no saint and never has been. If it would be any other team captain in question here, I assume people would say something along the lines that it is good that captain is “doing everything he can for the team” instead of blaming him showing bad example for his team.

  12. I love these analyses of the games. Intelligent and well-written. Too bad I have only one of them to read before my team is dispatched to the off-season.

    I think this series has the potential to cause some long-term damage to the Pens, but it isn’t doing a whole lot of good to the Flyers, either. The Pens’ abysmal play masks some serious problems in the Flyers’ play. First, their goaltending is garbage. This probably makes Fleury’s play radioactive waste, but Bryzgalov has been awful. If you depend on your offense to score 8 goals a night to win in the playoffs, you’re in trouble.

    Second, it is pretty clear they feed off the hate for Pittsburgh. It’s crazy how Flyers fans can’t bring themselves to enjoy the fact that they’re leading 3-0 in a series that was expected to be tough. Instead they’re all about Crosby this and Crosby that. Beating Crosby becomes more important than winning the Cup. Ask Bruce Boudreau how that worked for him. The problem is there’s no Crosby in the second round, so you have to find your motivation elsewhere. Against teams like the Rangers, the Bruins and even the Senators this season, the Flyers were almost indifferent at times and couldn’t bring the emotions we see from them now.

    Third, they’re getting used to getting away with terrible starts. It’s great that you can come back, but it also encourages the bad habit of easing your way into the game. Boston, New York and New Jersey don’t cough up leads like the Pens have done and if you start the game like the Flyers have started every game in this series so far, you’ll be in trouble.

    The Flyers would have had a better chance to reach the conference finals after a hard-fought 6 or 7 game series against the Pens. But this series is too easy and has them feeling too good about themselves.

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