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It's A Great Day for Playoff Hockey - Apr. 20

by Sam Kasan / Pittsburgh Penguins
It's a Great Day for Playoff Hockey will be tracking the Penguins' Stanley Cup quest with constant updates throughout the postseason.


7:22 PM:
Here's an interesting note on how popular the Penguins-Flyers game was Sunday on NBC:

"Sunday's Stanley Cup Playoffs Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Quarter-final featuring the Pittsburgh Penguins and Philadelphia Flyers earned a 1.7 overnight rating and a 4 share.  The only NHL game to rate higher this season on NBC was the Winter Classic.  The rating is up 70% from the comparable Flyers-Capitals game broadcast last year.  Pittsburgh's local market rating was an 18.0/33 share."

From Schuyler Baehman, NHL communications manager

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1:20 PM:
The Penguins are holding an optional practice at Wachovia Center this afternoon. 10 players are not participating: forwards Petr Sykora, Ruslan Fedotenko, Matt Cooke, Evgeni Malkin, Bill Guerin; defensemen Hal Gill, Brooks Orpik, Mark Eaton and Sergei Gonchar; and goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury.
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2:07 AM:
I know this is a really late post but I was browsing the Philadelphia Inquirer's website and stumbled across an interesting article. Sam Donnellon wrote that Flyers goaltender Martin Biron has outplayed Marc-Andre Fleury in the Stanley Cup playoffs opening series so far.

Donnellon made the following argument:

"The Flyers may still be losing this series, but after today's 6-3 Game 3 victory Marty Biron is outplaying Pittsburgh's Marc-Andre Fleury. At least statistically. He's made more saves, allowed fewer goals and really, was within a late power play goal Friday of stealing Game 2 in Pittsburgh."

Indeed, Biron has made more saves than Fleury (101 to 88). However, Biron has also faced more shots (111 to 96).

And what's more, Donnellon is wrong in his second point. Biron has allowed more goals (10) than Fleury (8).

Donnellon stated that Biron has outplayed Fleury "statistically." But I would respectfully argue that the statistics tell a different story. Fleury has allowed fewer goals, has a lower goals-against average (2.42 to 3.05) and a higher save percentage (.917 to .910). Also, Fleury has the advantage in the most important stat of all: wins (2 to 1).

Both goalies have played great in the series and a valid argument could be made for either. But if we are judging them on their statistics, I would say that Fleury has the edge so far.

But the only thing that really matters is who which team wins the series in the end.


Author: Sam Kasan

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