DUCKS 2, PENS 1
That'll do it. Pens drop this one to the Ducks by a score of 2-1.0:32:
Kunitz is released! Fleury is on the bench for the extra attacker.2:43:
Ducks get a late PP opportunity as Kunitz goes for slashing. Pens to the PK.4:07:
Letang with the save of the game. Perry fired a shot that snuck through Flower's pads and was centimeters from crossing the goal line, but Tanger got behind and swept it out with his stick!!!8:00:
Ducks currently have a 27-23 advantage in shots, but Pens are dominating in the faceoff dot -- 28-16 (64 percent).12:09:
After a ton of offensive zone time, the Pens D gets caught pinching low with just Neal back on a 2-on-1 rush. Selanne is able to break a bit behind him and tucks a backhander through a tiny opening for the score. DUCKS 2, PENS 114:29:
Visnovsky tees off a shot that catches Michalek right on the ear, and he lays on the ice for a few scary moments. But he gets up, goes down the runway and ends up coming right back to the bench so it looks like he's okay. Phew!!!16:01:
But the Pens counter with a great shift by -- who else -- Malkin's line, where they barrage the net hard and pepper Hiller with some shots.18:10:
Ducks get a solid scoring chance early when Andrew Cogliano gets a few cracks just outside the blue paint, but Fleury flashes the pad and says no.20:00:
Puck drops to start the third. Game on!
- The Ducks are outhitting the Pens 19-12
- But the Pens are dominating the faceoff dot, 24-14 (63 percent)
- Orpik continues to pace Pittsburgh with 16:20 of ice time
The period ends with the game tied at 1-1, thanks to Perry's last-minute goal. Ducks have a 21-20 edge in shots.0:51:
Perry works the puck through a small space in front of the net and flips it past Fleury for the equalizer. PENS 1, DUCKS 14:08:
That was an exciting power play. Niklas Hagman got a shorthanded breakaway, but Niskanen was able to catch up to him enough so Fleury could make a sick poke check. Then on the ensuing rush, James Neal
couldn't corral a puck for a wide-open chance on the back door!6:08:
Now it's Pittsburgh's turn to head to the PP as Corey Perry goes for slashing!6:36:
Play slowed down the last few minutes, but the Pens just upped the tempo with a great shift that cumulated with a bomb from Michalek.12:06:
Pens back to full strength. Less than 10 seconds ago, 'Flower' just made an obscene glove save on a Cam Fowler blast from the circle. Love watching those saves where his catcher wheels around and snags the puck.14:05:
And now Malkin is going to the box for tripping. Ducks right back to the PP...
| ||"Hurricane Geno has hit CEC. Watch out for flying pucks, sick moves, and total destruction. You have been warned! #OMGeno #Pens" |
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Geno robs Sheldon Brookbank of the puck just inside the blue line and dekes Hiller out, but his shot rings off the inside of the post and out of danger!!!15:22:
Anaheim gets their fair share of chances with the man-advantage, but Fleury and the PKers are up to the task as Staal is released from the sin bin.17:35:
We're getting our first penalty of the game. It's being awarded to Staal for hooking, which means the NHL's top-ranked home PK unit will go to work.
| ||"The battle between the water fowl #pens" |
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Puck drops to start the second. Game on!
- Staal now has 17 goals through 37 games
- Orpik leads the Pens with 7:38 minutes
- Letang's three shots pace the squad
Period ends with the Pens holding a 1-0 lead thanks to Jordan Staal
. They also have a 13-8 advantage in shots.2:02:
Malkin's line seems like it's starting to go into beast mode. Their last few shifts have been fantastic.
| ||"Malkin is in human cheat code mode right now." |
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While a Ducks player chased him, Malkin just pulled the puck behind him and kicked it up to his blade with his stick. It would take me a full open sheet of ice and about 10 tries before I could do that standing still. He does it at full speed with the best players in the world trying to stop him. Unreal.8:59:
Ducks starting to find their legs. They just got an opportunity that lay in the slot for a few scary seconds, but the Pens are able to get there and clear it out.11:15:
Ducks counter with a good shift where Blake gets a few too many cracks on the doorstep, but Fleury stands tall and Anaheim ends up shooting the puck up and out of play.13:33:
The Ducks D-man pinches in on a puck, which proves to be a bad decision as Dupuis beats him there and sweeps it up to a breaking Staal. He goes down 2-on-1 with Cooke, fakes a pass and snipes a shot top shelf past Hiller for the score! PENS 1, DUCKS 016:36:
Decent start for the Pens. Their offensive zone time > than Anaheim's offensive zone time. By a lot.20:00:
It's a hockey night in Pittsburgh! Puck drops. Game on. The first period is underway.
Pens scratch Kennedy and Lovejoy. D pairings are switched up. Here are the official line combos...
Fleury in goal.
Today marked a special American Eagle Student Rush, where the youths lined up outside starting at 11 a.m. and later got to experience some entertainment that included a DJ, trivia and dance contests, prizes and even some yummy pizzas delivered by the Ice Crew. Here's some photos of our awesome fans at the festivities...
Good evening everyone! Tonight the Pens will look to get their seventh straight win at CONSOL Energy Center when they host the Anaheim Ducks, who are coming to this beautiful building for the first time. Pittsburgh is 11-2-1 in its last 14 games overall, 8-1-3 against the Western Conference this season and enters tonight 5-1-1 in its last seven games vs. Anaheim. The Penguins have won four straight games against the Ducks in Pittsburgh since Anaheim’s last win on Oct. 6, 2001 at Mellon Arena (4-2).
The Pens held an optional morning skate this a.m. while the Ducks didn't have one at all since they played last night in Minnesota. With their 2-1 win over the Wild, the Ducks are now 4-0-2 in their last six and are one of, if not the NHL's hottest teams since the calendar flipped. Sam Kasan's got the deets on their recent play
. Though his players didn't practice, head coach Bruce Boudreau did speak to the media prior to the game and was armed with plenty of awesome one-liners. Click here to see them
For the rest of the game day coverage, click here
(you really should click, the blog is chock full with pics, videos and information). For the scratches and line combos, check back to this blog at 7 p.m.
Earlier this afternoon, when someone made a joke about head coach Dan Bylsma being a "former Duck" (he played his final four NHL seasons with Anaheim from 2000-04), he corrected the claim and said,
That, of course, spurred a whole lot of reminiscing in the office about one of the greatest sports movie trilogies of all time: The Mighty Ducks
. These films came out during my childhood, and I remember going to see them when I was a little guy in theaters and then watching them over and over again once they went to VHS. I never realized how hilarious they were until after I went to college, when my teammates at Michigan State would look back and realize how cheesy and awesomely bad some of the scenes were. We'd definitely have a good laugh rewatching them and one year, we even dressed as the team from the original movie (I was Bash Brother Dean Portman).
My hands-down favorite of the three was D2: The Mighty Ducks
. There's just so many great moments in this one I can't even choose. But in honor of the scene where the Ducks and the new players that join Team USA have a team-building exercise on the ice (Dwayne Robertson and his lasso!!!) I'm going to start the blog with Dwight Yoakam's "Let's Work Together."