PHILADELPHIA -- Sidney Crosby was both defiant and brutally honest. It was all a result of his frustrations.
Center - PIT
GOALS: 2 | ASST: 3 | PTS: 5
SOG: 5 | +/-: -1
While admitting he has no explanation for how Pittsburgh has given up 16 goals in the past two games and 20 in the three against Philadelphia in the much-anticipated Eastern Conference Quarterfinals series between the in-state rivals, Crosby refused to give the Flyers credit for getting under the Penguins' skin even though it certainly appears to be the case -- and one of the reasons why Crosby's team is in a 0-3 hole heading into Game 4 Wednesday.
"You know, there is more than one team getting in those things so you can make a story all you want about us getting frustrated," Crosby said after his team absorbed an 8-4 loss Sunday at Wells Fargo Center. "We are playing playoff hockey and they are doing the same things we are. It's intense and you can say that we got frustrated, but we didn't.
"We took some penalties, didn't kill them and got within one and didn't get back in the game. We know what we have to do, we just need to do it more consistently. Everyone knows the way we need to play and no one is in here pointing fingers."
Crosby, though, did touch on the dislike his team -- and he personally -- feels toward the Flyers.
"I don't like any guy on their team," he said.
He said that's why he used his stick to push Jakub Voracek's glove away from the Flyers forward was bending down to pick it up midway through the first period. That little move set off a wild melee 12:02 into the first period that ended with Crosby and Claude Giroux in the box with fighting majors and Kimmo Timonen and Kris Letang in the dressing room with game misconducts after they engaged in a fight of their own.
"It was near me and he went to pick it up and I pushed it," Crosby said.
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When it was suggested to Crosby that he could have skated away, he scoffed.
"Skate away?" Crosby asked rhetorically. "Oh, well I didn't that time.
"I don't have to sit here and explain why I pushed a glove away," he added. "They are doing a lot of things out there, too. You know what, we don't like each other. Was I going to sit there and pick up his glove? What was I supposed to do?"
Crosby said he liked the way the Penguins played once the second period started, but his big regret is that they couldn't get to the second intermission down by just one goal.
Each time the Penguins did cut the deficit down to one, they committed a penalty and Philadelphia cashed in with a power-play goal. It was 6-4 after the second period.
Penguins coach Dan Bylsma turned to backup Brent Johnson to start the third, but Giroux scored 27 seconds into the period to extend the lead to three.
"We just weren't able to get through that second, staying within one," Crosby said. "That's really what it came down to. I mean there are all these little things that happen within a game and you can analyze them all you want. The fact is we were within one in the second period and didn't find a way to tie it up.
"But, I don't think we need to sit here and analyze it. It is the playoffs and there are a lot of things that happened on both sides. Everyone is guilty of it; no one is blaming anyone here. It's heated out there and that's what the playoffs are like."
The Penguins could be out of the playoffs Wednesday, when Game 4 will be contested at the Wells Fargo Center.
Crosby wouldn't even entertain that possibility.
"You gotta win one," he said. "It's plain and simple. You can't win all four at once. You gotta win one and I think you know no one is showing any signs of giving up in here."