Pens-Caps In-Game Blog
Sunday, 01.22.2012 / 11:15 AM ET / Features
By Michelle Crechiolo
|It's geno's world and the rest are spectators #Pens
PENS 4, CAPS 3
3:29: GENO SLAMS IT HOME FROM THE SIDE OF THE NET FOR THE OVERTIME GAME WINNER!!! PENS WIN 4-3!!!
5:00: The five-minute extra period begins. Teams will skate 4-on-4 per NHL rules. Here we go!
|"One the best games all season, thus far; it has been a classic, physical, and emotional game. @pghpenguins @NHL #Pens #Caps"
0:00: It would only be fitting in a game like this that we'd go to overtime...
0:31: WOW...Brouwer wheels down the side of the ice and blasts a slapper at Fleury that rings off the inside of the far post!!! #heartattack
2:18: Malkin works it to Neal by the circle, who tees one off and Neuvirth has to drop down and come up with a big split pad save to prevent the hat trick!
8:00: Pens successfully thwart the PP as Neal is released!!!
10:00: Neal heads to the box for tripping. Pens on a huge kill here...
|"@jneal_18 Best trade EVER #pens #real deal"
12:54: Neal gets the puck on his backhand in a tight corner and uses some deft stick work to switch to his forehand and roof it over Neuvirth -- not to mention he was swarmed by a pair of Caps as well. Awesome work by Geno to gain the zone on that play. PENS 3, CAPS 3
14:23: Now that they've got the 1-goal lead, Caps doing a lot of dumping and chasing. Pens working hard to keep the puck rimmed in the O-zone.
18:52: Semin puts a pass right in Ovi's wheelhouse on a 2-on-1 rush, and the Russian sniper tees it off into the back of the cage before Fleury has time to slide over. CAPS 3, PENS 2
20:00: Puck drops to start the third. Game on!!!
|"Pens and Caps playing an intense game. It's great to watch. Definitely ready for the #Pens to pour it on in the third."
As mentioned in the first intermission...
To our readers who are also on Twitter, make sure you follow the website writers' handle at @PensInsideScoop and the official account of the Pittsburgh Penguins at @pghpenguins.
That's because from now on, we'll be featuring tweets here in the blog that we get from our awesome fans during the games (tag them with #Pens so they're easier for us to find).
|"What an end to the period!!! Nonstop action there, love it!!"
- Pens are 8-3-1 this season when tied after two periods
- Pittsburgh has a 22-17 advantage in the faceoff dot
- Neal now ranks third (tied) in the NHL with 25 goals
0:00: What an exciting end to the period. Pens were sieging the net hard and getting ahh-inspiring chances, but couldn't convert. Pens and Caps are tied 2-2. Shots are even at 14.
1:53: Pens getting a two-man advantage for the next 51 seconds as Knuble hauls down Geno in the O-zone! Pittsburgh uses their timeout to prepare accordingly.
3:02: After Kennedy is tripped up by the circles, Kunitz gathers the loose puck on the delayed call and his shot deflects off a Caps defender's skate and clangs off the post! A scrum ensues after the whistle that results in TK and Brouwer doing the dance in the corner. Spirited bout. We'll award TK both the decision and the takedown. Pens to the PP!
5:22: After Washington thwarts a Pens rush, the Caps counter quickly with a 2-on-1 rush involving Perreault and Semin. Perreault's initial shot is kicked away by Fleury, but Semin is there to stuff home the rebound. PENS 2, CAPS 2
|"Fleury was looking absolutely great on that penalty kill, but #Caps Brooks Laich shelfed it past him on the 4-on-4. 2-1 #Pens"
8:58: With 2 seconds left on Orpik's penalty (and 21 left on Brouwer's), Laich manages to get his stick free while battling with Michalek to punch home a pass from Wideman. PENS 2, CAPS 1
10:37: Caps will now have a 4-on-3 advantage as Brouwer goes for cross-checking. 1:13 left on Z's penalty and 1:41 left on Orpik's.
10:56: Pens will be down two men for the next 1:32 as Orpik gets called for holding Ovi. Huge kill here for Pittsburgh, especially as the Pens' two best penalty killing D are in the box. Martin is out with Adams and Cooke up front.
11:32: Now Michalek is whistled for elbowing after he lays Matt Hendricks out in the corner. Pens to their second PK of the afternoon.
15:50: As Michalek is fishing a puck out of the corner, Ovi flies in and catches him up high with a check. Tempers start to flare afterward...looks like this game may be getting a bit chippy.
18:34: Knuble (aka certified Penguins killer) breaks behind the Pens D and goes in alone on Fleury. He jukes over and gets Flower to go down, but his shot hits the inside of the post -- and Fleury is able to recover and glove it for the save!!! Ridiculawesome recovery there by the Pens netminder.
20:00: Puck drops to start the second. Pens have 1:49 left to kill on the penalty to Tangradi. Game on!
Photo courtesy of Getty Images
NOTE: To our readers who are also on Twitter, make sure you follow the website writers' handle at @PensInsideScoop and the official account of the Pittsburgh Penguins at @pghpenguins.
That's because from now on, we'll be featuring tweets here in the blog that we get from our awesome fans during the games (tag them with #Pens so they're easier for us to find). So without further ado, here's our first-ever fan tweet...
|"That was just about a perfect period of hockey by the Pens. PP looked great. Letang is on fire. Malkin and Neal are a lethal combination."
- Letang now has four points (2G-2A) in his first three games back since missing 21
- To no one's surprise, he leads the Pens with 9:07 minutes
- Neal and Malkin have five of the Pens' nine shots
0:00: That'll do it for the first. Pens have a 2-0 lead on goals from Letang and Neal. Shots are 9-4 Pens.
0:11: Pens will end the period on the PK as Tangradi gets two for high sticking.
0:31: Great shift by Richard Park just now. He broke the puck out of the zone off a great individual effort and got a point-blank scoring chance from the slot later in the shift.
2:08: Pens got lots of quality chances on that man-advantage, but just couldn't hit the net. Definitely a momentum builder for Pittsburgh.
4:15: Semin hooks Kennedy as they race for a puck and he's getting penalized for it! Pens to the PP!
5:21: You won't see this very often – Eric Tangradi just checked John Erskine into the boards behind the Caps net, the exact same pane of glass the Pens forward knocked out on Friday. That pane of glass is FEARFUL of Tango...
9:09: Interesting that Caps head coach Dale Hunter made Marcus Johansson a scratch. He'd been one of Washington's best players as of late, centering the top line between Ovechkin and Brouwer.
14:08: The left-handed Malkin wins an O-zone faceoff directly to the blade of the also left-handed James Neal, who sends a shot glove side past Neuvirth! PENS 2, CAPS 0
15:09: And Kris Letang strikes just eight seconds into the man-advantage for his second goal in as many games! A Caps player rings a clearing attempt around the boards that Letang collects and pulls into the slot. He rips a shot right down the middle that tickles the twine past Neuvirth! PENS 1, CAPS 0
15:17: And the Pens head to the PP as Wideman boards Kunitz in the corner of his own zone!
16:00: Both teams have gotten off to quick starts. It's been fast-paced hockey with no whistles through the first four minutes. Good to see with an early start like this.
20:00: It's a great day for hockey in Pittsburgh! Puck drops. Game on!
Photo courtesy of Getty Images
Pens' lines remain the same. Lovejoy and Asham are scratched.
Fleury in goal. Michal Neuvirth gets the nod for Washington.
Here's this morning's coachspeak with Dan Bylsma...
On the lineup:
Marc-Andre (Fleury) will be in net. There will be no changes.
On being able to play Marc-Andre Fleury because of the All-Star break:
A full six-day rest coming up certainly plays into that equation as has their schedule this month.
On Washington since the coaching change:
I think from what I see playing against them, their structure defensively is really a main focus for their team. It’s almost a defense first type of attitude from their team. There’s not very much on the ice in terms of speed and room in the neutral zone and that’s really been something you can see in every game that you watch them play. They certainly still have a transition ability, one-on-one, and skill ability, but there’s a really different feel on the ice in terms of a defense-first type of mindset from their team.
On still having a defensive team with Alex Ovechkin:
Definitely. You still see and feel the dangerous quick-strike ability, but it’s not the same feel as the Capitals of three years ago where you felt like it was all-out pressure from an offensive team and that’s what you had to deal with.
On the ingredient that takes the team from a six-game losing streak to a five-game win streak:
I think it would be tough to find a difference in how we played the game. I think the difference is really the attitude at which we are playing. We believe in how we play as a team and we have an attitude when we play that way. It’s not a bad attitude, but we have a belief in it. I think starting with the Washington game where we did lose, we got back to were we’re thinking like Pittsburgh Penguins how we play the game. There’s been a little bit of attitude with that as well. There’s been a determination and grit and we’re playing with a little edge. That’s been a mindset more than something you see on the ice and that mindset and that attitude has really been the thing that has turned us from losing six to winning five.
Goal: Brittney Goncar
Good morning everyone! This afternoon's tilt between the Penguins and Capitals is NBC's nationally televised 'NHL Game of the Week,' which means the start time was moved from 3 p.m. to 12:30 p.m. It's the last meeting of the season between the two rivals, and Pittsburgh will be looking to finish with a winning record against Washington for the first time since the 2007-08 season.
Oh yes, and they're looking to get their sixth straight win, which would be a new season high for this Pens squad.
Head coach Dan Bylsma addressed the media before practice since there was no morning skate, and he said that Marc-Andre Fleury will be in net. Fleury has been between the pipes for all five of Pittsburgh's wins, and today will mark his 21st straight appearance – a new career high for the 27-year-old. It's been a heavy workload for 'Flower,' but he does have the All-Star break coming up.
" A full six-day rest coming up certainly plays into that equation as has their schedule this month," Bylsma said.
Bylsma also said there will be no other lineup changes. That means Deryk Engelland will be in and Ben Lovejoy will be scratched.
Stay tuned for the video and transcript of Bylsma's remarks.