Stanley Cup Final Game 5
Check this post later tonight for my commentary.
Update 20:54 PM ET:
I am very surprised by this game. It looked like it was Game 1 instead of Game 5. Detroit looked very sloppy throughout the period.
Marian Hossa had a sweet goal off several bad mistakes by the Red Wings in the neutral zone. The second Pens goal was also another mistake by the Red Wings defense on clearing the puck. Red Wings need to make better decisions and shot the puck on the net.
Towards the end of the period, I saw too much pass and not enough shooting. Darren Helm had a good chance but the Pens defense did a good job from letting him get a good shot.
I would have to agree with the NBC broadcast crew, Valtteri Flippula was the best player for Detroit in this period and the whole Pens team came to play. Although, I think that Evengi Malkin is still in a funk. We’ll see what happens the rest of way.
We could be starting our way back to Pittsburgh.
Update 21:47 PM ET:
A much better performance by the Red Wings in the second period. Darren Helm, Jiri Hudler, and Kirk Maltby line did a good job in getting the Detroit’s first goal. There were many Red Wings breakaways in this period but they failed to cash them in. But, the Red Wings have the momentum going into the third period.
Again, the Pens need to shoot the puck more. They should not rely on holding the lead if they want to play Game 6 on Wednesday.
The Pens might be in trouble if they lose the services of Sergei Gonchar and Ryan Malone tonight. If not tonight, maybe Game 6?
Third period should be interesting.
Update 22:41 PM ET:
An interesting period it was! Pavel Datsyuk’s power play goal tied it at 2-2 and Brain Rafalski’s goal gave them lead. The coach made the necessary line changes, Zetterberg and Flippula switching lines, to get the Red Wings going in this period. It was a good result for the Red Wings, but the last minute goal gotta hurt.
The Pens seem out of it in this period. They did not shot the puck until towards the end. So, the payoff was hanging around to score a junk goal with less than a minute left. But, I wonder if Gonchar will be playing in OT.
Detroit took to them and we got to witness excellent playoff hockey in the third period. Lot of great saves as well. What a period!
So, we will be heading to overtime tonight. Will this level of play continue into OT? I hope the game will not last too long tonight. We all have to work tomorrow, right? 😉
If the Red Wings win tonight, who will win the Conn Symthe? I think it either Zetterberg or Osgood. I am leaning towards to Zetterberg. But, this is speculation right now. The Pens have something to prove in this OT period.
Update 23:30 PM ET:
Well, the Red Wings played the OT period to win, but no goals were scored. The Pens look like they are running out of gas. But, they had their chances when they had the Red Wings on their heels. The Red Wing penalty in this period was a weak call. Many things were let go in the period, that one probably could have too. But, no goals and another OT coming.
Hopefully, it will end soon.
Update 3 June 2008 12:15 AM ET:
Do these games ever end? They do not in playoff hockey. Finally, the refs called penalty against Pens after another questionable goalie interference call. But, neither team were able to do anything on the power play. Shots are 54-28 in favor of Detroit. You would think that one of those would be in by now. Marc-Andre Fleury is keeping the Pens alive in this series. He is definitely their leading candidate for the Conn Sythme should the Pens come back to win the series. He might even challenge the Red Wings candidates should they lose the series, but I think Zetterberg has the edge here. But, more hockey to play and someone will win evidentually.
Probably no sleep for me tonight. Oh well!
Update 3 June 2008 12:47 AM ET:
The Pens finally scored about half way into the third OT. It occurred on a double minor high sticking penalty. Peter Sykora said he would score in OT, and he called it after 3 OTs. Well, we going back to Pittsburgh.
See Game Summary at NHL.com.