GAME THREE: Pens 4, Red Wings 2 — The Hockey Gods Giveth, The Hockey Gods Miss A Really Obvious Too Many Men Call

After the Pens ended up on the dark side of both physics and officiating in Game Two, they played their worst game of the series so far and walked away with a 4-2 victory.

Credit Where Credit Is Due:

Max Talbot played his ass off, Fleury had arguably his best game since mid-Caps series or possibly Philly Game 4, and the Pens’ power play actually scored twice against a team without Tim Gleason on its roster, including at the game’s most crucial juncture.

And Now, Ripping On People:

–The refereeing sure took a wild swing back in the Pens’ favor last night, with Pittsburgh avoiding a lengthy, crazily obvious too many men penalty that just simply doesn’t ever get missed in the NHL (unless it’s a three-second infraction where the player hops back on the bench right as the opposing team starts yelling, which this most certainly wasn’t). The refs also forewent a Chris Kunitz cross-check to Johan Franzen’s head, but went ahead and whistled Jonathan Ericsson for interference in the third, which was definitely interference but also more minor than about 30,000 other uncalled plays in this series. Again, I’ll always argue that it’s tough to say refereeing “cost” a team a game, as the Wings did allow two power play goals on only three opportunities, to the same power play that we spend about a paragraph making fun of every other day.

— Detroit also managed just three shots on goal in the third period. I don’t think the refs blocked many.

Kris Letang’s goal was pretty weak on Chris Osgood’s part; I’ve always felt that if you don’t one-time a power play point shot, there’s no point in then going ahead and shooting it anyway once the defense adjusts, because it gets blocked and cleared about 80% of the time, but Letang’s shot got through the D and went right through Osgood for a refreshingly questionable goal. Now if only we can get one to hit off the boards, post, his pad, and his ass before trickling in…

— Both of the goals Detroit did end up with — even though they ended up controlling the second period more tightly than either team has clutched a period so far this series — were still extreeeeeemely lucky. On the first, Sergei Gonchar poke-checked the puck away from Ville Leino and right to Henrik Zetterberg, who was left uncovered after Brooks Orpik went out of his way to run someone near the blue line. I immediately yelled at Orpik when the goal went in, then I received a text ripping on Crosby for getting stuck behind the net and another from a friend asking why Gonchar didn’t try on the play; us Pens fans can all agree to be constantly angry, we just split some hairs over exactly who we’re angry at. On the second goal, Matt Cooke’s instinctual pass-deflection ended up perfectly slowing the puck down on its way to Johan Franzen, giving him a free left side of the net to work with. I’d say probability might dictate that crap like this will eventually level off, but I know better than to pre-frustrate myself by actually believing this.

— The Second Period tonight was the only scoreless period of hockey in this series so far. Weird.

— You did notice Franzen and Brooks Orpik each yelling at the refs when their respective correct penalties were called, right? Because the majority of NHL players whine far more than Sidney Crosby, as anyone who’s watched the ’09 Playoffs would undeniably agree with, right? Nope, Crosby’s still a whiner? Ok.

— Get ready to see Pavel Datsyuk in Game Four. Hopefully he eats up some of Abdelkader’s ice time.

— Game Four Thursday night will determine just how shamelessly I sneak away from my friend’s wedding reception this Saturday to watch Game Five…

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3 Responses to “GAME THREE: Pens 4, Red Wings 2 — The Hockey Gods Giveth, The Hockey Gods Miss A Really Obvious Too Many Men Call”

  1. GAME THREE: Pens 4, Red Wings 2 — The Hockey Gods Giveth, The … Says:

    […] See more here:  GAME THREE: Pens 4, Red Wings 2 — The Hockey Gods Giveth, The … […]

  2. GO PENS Says:

    Letang’s goal was not weak … not anymore weak than Gonch’s PP goal. Letang made a great play after missing the pass and gathered it off the boards. I think he was surprised more than anything when he looked up and there was NO ONE between him and the net other than Osgood. He beat him with a low slapper five hole. At least Gonch had a screen set on his riser to the net. Weak is knuckled over the glove hand, off the boards-off the goalie’s pad, or flopping to one side when the puck was NEVER even headed that way (Zet goal game three).

  3. Game 3: Penguins 4 – Red Wings 2: Yeah, that was 6 guys wasn’t it? | SLBD Says:

    […] Pens out shot the Red Wings 10-3 in the final period. The penalty was only two minutes of that. As Dan Hooper said “The referees don’t block […]

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