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Pens-Flyers In-Game Blog

by Sam Kasan / Pittsburgh Penguins


0:00: Horn sounds and this game is over. The Pens come out of the city of brotherly love with a big two points in the standings, drawing even with the Flyers. Huge game from Cooke with 2 goals and 3 points.

0:19: Simmonds scores for the Flyers. Shows good hands in front of the net to turn the puck over and bury the shot.

2:47: Time ticking away in this one. The Pens content to get the puck deep in the offensive zone, cycle and kill the clock. Asham and Coburn got into some roughness. The two exchanged some words and shoves.

     "Ray Shero is a genius. A 30 goal scorer in James Neal. Wow. "
     "You could hear a pin drop inside the wells Fargo center right now. "

10:58: DIRTY 30!!!! James Neal scores his 30th goal of the year to extend the Pens' lead. Neal Malkin's pass finds a streaking Neal down the near side. Neal's initial shot is stopped by Bobrovsky. Neal finds his own rebound and backhands it from the goal line and into the goal PENS 6, FLYERS 3

12:23: By the way, the Pens 3-on-5 goal was their first since Feb. 13, 1988 in Los Angeles. Mario Lemieux scored it in the first period. -Elias Sports Bureau

17:45: As expected, the Flyers use a timeout. Unbelievable start to this contest with the Pens scoring two quick even-strength goals to take a lead. But this is far from over.

17:51: GOAL!!! Dupuis gets the Pens a two-goal lead. He finds the puck along the goal line. His centering pass goes off the inside skate of Bobrovsky and slides over the goal line. PENS 5, FLYERS 3

19:23: GOAL!!! The Pens regain the lead as Jeffrey finds a rebound and stuffs it home. Cooke took the initial shot from the slot. The puck came to Jeffrey, who easily burries the shot into an empty cage. PENS 4, FLYERS 3

20:00: Puck drops. Game on. Third period underway. I'm sure it'll be a crazy ridic third period. Can't wait to see it unfold.

(Getty Images)

The strange calls continued from the first to the second period. There are 12 total penalties so far in this game and 9 power plays. This game has certainly become a battle of special teams, particularly for Pittsburgh's PK with its 2 shorthanded goals. Should make for an interesting third period.
  • Cooke with his 10th and 11th goals of the season
  • Flyers with edge in shots, 23-15
  • Staal and Neal with 3 shots each

0:00: Horn sounds and after a crazy 40 minutes of actoin this game is tied at 3-3. Cooke (2) and Staal for Pittsburgh. Jagr (2) and Wellwood for Philly.

2:19: The Flyers tie this game. Engelland loses his skate edge atop the crease. Wellwood was there to bang the puck into the net. Unfortunately turn of events for Engelland and Fleury. PENS 3, FLYERS 3

3:03: GOAL!!! The Pens score a 3-on-5 shorthanded goal by Cooke, his second of the game. Cooke wins a foot race with Timonen. Cooke has trouble collecting the puck, but squeezes a backhander under the arm of Bryzgalov for the score. Bobrovsky comes into the game in net in relief of Bryzgalov. PENS 3, FLYERS 2

4:13: After the goal Orpik gets called for a hook and it's going to be a 5-on-3 power play for Philly.

4:46: GOAL!!! Jordan Staal with a shorthanded tally. Adams gains the zone, drops to Staal and drive to the net. Staal pulls the puck to shoot through traffic and goes glove side that eludes Bryzgalov. PENS 2, FLYERS 2

5:02: Another penalty in this one. Briere goes down with Dupuis' help. Unfortunately the refs call Dupuis for tripping. The dangerous PP of Philly is back at it.

5:52: Vitale drives to the net again, much to the ire of the Flyers. Voracek gets rough with Vitale and bodies come together. Just another post-whistle scrum in this game.

6:27: Power play expires. Malkin hits his second post of the game with a blistering one-timer from the midpoint during the session. Jeffrey's chance with Bryzgalov down and out goes just over the crossbar.

8:28: Power play coming for the Pens. Holding call against the newly acquired Grossman.

10:04: Staal catches Coburn with a boarding hit in the corner. Good to see Coburn is OK. That could have been ugly.

10:13: Fleury does it again. Ridiculous split save to get a pad on Hartnell's one-timer.

     "Fleury making some huge saves for the Pens. This is headed for a Malkin game-tying goal with three seconds left in regulation."

10:48: What another weird play. After Fleuy makes a snazzy save on Read, Adams tries to hit Dupuis for a breakaway. But Briere not only interferes with Dupuis, but steals his stick and throws it deep in the zone.

12:07: Vitale gets called for roughing. He'll sit the box and the Pens will need a big PK here to keep this one close.

12:08: Great passing give-and-go with Martin and Asham. The quick little passes sets up Martin for a one-timer from the point. Afterwards a scrum breaks out and it looks like a few players will going to the box.

13:05: The Pens escape the penalty unscathed despite some great pressure from the Flyers. Fleury was huge with a shot from the slot by van Riemsdayk.

15:09: Whistle blows and a penalty coming against Martin. He goes to the box for slashing. Martin with a hack after taking a hit by Couturier.

17:59: The penalty ends and the Pens cannot come up with the equalizer.

20:00: Puck drops. Game on. Second period underway. Pens open the middle frame with a power play.

No love lost in this rivalry...

(Getty Images)

What a strange period. It started out with good flow for both teams. Then late there were a series of penalties that broke up that 5-on-5 flow. A lot of special teams action and two quick strikes from Jagr (18 seconds apart) and it's a 2-1 contest with a frantic final minutes.
  • Jagr tallies 14th and 15th goals of the season
  • Physical period. Pens outhitting Flyers, 19-13
  • Neal leads all players with 3 hits

0:00: Horn sounds. Period ends with the Flyers leading 2-1 on Jagr's two tallies.

0:01: Van Riemsdyk takes a slashing penalty on Neal right before the period ends. Pittsburgh will open the second with essentially a full power play.

2:30: Staal gets out of the box and both teams are back to full strength. What a crazy sequence of penalties.

4:26: The Flyers take the lead on Jagr's second goal. He carries the puck into the low circle with a lot of space. In a rapid motion, the puck elevates off his stick into the water bottle atop the netting. FLYERS 2, PENS 1

4:39: Staal is heading to the box after the ensuing faceoff. Another interference call. The Flyers will go back to the power play. This one will be 4-on-3.

4:44: Jagr ties the game with a nasty shot from the circle. After Neal and Malkin traded slap shots on net, Jagr carries the puck on a 3-on-2. Jagr head fakes a pass and snaps a high shot into the goal. PENS 1, FLYERS 1

5:42: Simmonds is heading to the penalty box.The call is goalie interference and we'll skate 4-on-4.

5:57: Craig Adams runs into Giroux for a pick and the refs are going call interference on the Pens forward. PK will get some action with one of its best performers in the box.

7:51: Malkin carries the puck into the zone and strikes a goal post. That play started from a great, patient play by Letang in his own zone, cooly skating the puck behind the net, dishing a pass and avoiding a check.

11:50: Engelland makes a huge BOOM with a hit on Giroux entering the D-zone (even took out teammates Letang in the process). Hartnell then gets in Engelland's face. Words are exchanged, but nothing much comes of it. The hitting is picking up in this one.

     "Hartnell wanted no parts of Engelland. I wouldn't either."
"Giroux just met a brick wall that is deryk engelland. Ouch #pens"


13:53: The Flyers PK with a good showing by keeping Pittsburgh off the board. The Pens tried to get some movement, but the Flyers had thier sticks in lanes and were blocking shots.

15:53: Coburn will take a seat in the penalty box after cross checking a couple of Penguins. I'm not sure which the call was made on, but Pens PP goes to work.

16:43: Matt Cooke is a one-man show to stake out an early lead for the Pens, first shot of the game too. Cooke blocks a shot high in the defensive zone, tracks the puck down in the neutral zone and carries down the far side. He rips a shot through Bryzgalov. PENS 1, FLYERS 0

20:00: Puck drops. Game on. First period underway.

(Getty Images)

12:49 PM:
The Pens scratch Kennedy, Lovejoy & O'Reilly. Pittsburgh's lines below...



Fleury is in net.

The Flyers used the following lines at warmups...

Van Riemsdyk-Schenn-Simmonds

11:51 AM:
Non-hockey related item: Michelle is on the road all by herself covering the team in Philly and Buffalo (these kids grow up so fast). After many great food suggestions via Twitter (@PensInsideScoop) she finally decided to get the Philly cheese steak experience. It's her first time in Philadelphia so she went with the classic spot: Geno's.

I asked her how the steak was. Quote: "The cheese got all over me, but it was so worth it. I ate the entire thing." I assume that means it was good.

(Geno's also makes a guest appearance in the Boyz II Men video below. "All the Philly steaks you can eat.")

11:36 AM:
Coachspeak with Dan Bylsma…

On Asham:
He’s been feeling really good for 10-plus days now. He’s gotten back on the ice with us for five of those days. I don’t think he’s in optimal condition right now, but he’s a big body and a guy we want to have back in our lineup. He’s feeling real good about it. He’s been wanting to play this week. He’ll be in there today.

On defending against Philadelphia:
They’re a really good rush team, really dangerous throughout their lineup. You can talk about Jagr and (Claude) Giroux, (Jakub) Voracek has been playing with a lot of speed on the rush as well. Their whole team, they play with speed, drive the net really well, their D join, they move laterally across the line as well. They’re a very dangerous team. Minimizing turnovers and pucks for them to play that type of game. Playing in the offensive zone, grinding them down, limiting their energy to play that type of game. Having a good F-3 allows playing in the offensive zone. When you do that gives your team a great chance to have a D gap and limit their opportunities. Those are the keys against the Philadelphia team that is very good. Regardless of numbers, their power play has always been very dangerous. You know where their success comes from. Limiting those opportunities as well.

On the back-to-backs being afternoon games:
Preparation-wise we go through our scout and meetings the day before for a 12 or 1, 2 o’clock game. Preparation-wise it’s a little bit different. They’re more advantageous playing afternoon games than playing two games at 7 o’clock at night and travel after, getting into bed much later and not as much rest. I like the back-to-back games with one or both being at 12:30, 1, 2 o’clock time.

11:15 AM:
Michelle got the scoop from head coach Dan Bylsma on today's lineup. Arron Asham will indeed play, and Marc-Andre Fleury will be in net.

11:00 AM:
In one hour the Pens will lock horns with the Philadelphia Flyers in an important battle for both the intra-state rivalry and for points in a clustered Eastern Conference standings. Only three points separate four teams in the middle of the pack in the East, with the Flyers holding a slight two-point edge over Pittsburgh.

The Flyers are a banged up squad entering the contest with Jaromir Jagr, James van Riemsdyk, Daniel Briere and Tom Sestito on the injury list. Their status for the game is unknown at this time. Michelle gives you all the info you need to know heading into the contest.

Arron Asham may will make his return to the lineup this afternoon after missing the last 13 games with concussion-like symptoms. Mearsy gives us a quick look at today's matchups in the Verizon Game Day Report.

I made a promise to PensTV camerawoman Meghan McManimon that I would play Boyz II Men's "Motown Philly" in today's blog. This video is absolutely amazing on so many levels that I can't even begin to describe here. Everything from the dancing, to the outfits, to the shot in front of Geno's Steaks make for endless entertainment. And the best part is that the baritone voiced singer only has two lines: "Nah" and "All the Philly steaks you can eat." Anyways, here is "Motown Philly." ABC BBD.

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