RECAP 21: The Race. Pens Smoke Flyers 5-2 feat. Wiz

RECAP 21: The Race. Pens Smoke Flyers 5-2 feat. Wiz

Penguins

RECAP 21: The Race. Pens Smoke Flyers 5-2 feat. Wiz

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I’ll be honest with you.  I was out of town all weekend playing golf with a couple buddies and my old man.  Beers were consumed.  Cancel me if you must.

Anyone over 30 will understand why I’m still feeling like that alien from Men in Black right now.  Getting old stinks.

Two points to this confession:

  • While I did have the games on in the background, I wasn’t able to catch as much detail as I’d like.  Sunday’s game was a disaster.  #Analysis
  • Tonight’s recap will be filled with even more moronic errors than usual.  Brain is clicking around 64%.  Buckle up.

Anyway, the Flyers are Rats.  Talkin’ big Mama and Papa Rats. But those Rats are 2 points ahead of the Penguins with 2 games in hand in an increasingly tight East division.  Tonight is a huge game.  This entire Rat series has the potential to catapult the season or put the Pens in a serious Rat hole. The only thing we can guaruantee…..is that these Rats will keep fuckin’.

Fans are in.  Crosby is out.  Let’s see what happens.

1ST PERIOD

Living in Columbus, I was stuck with the NBC Philly broadcast.  The play-by-play guy Jim Jackson sounds exactly like Brent Musberger (he’s good though).  It made me wonder if he ever had an on-air orgasm over some girl like Musberger, but then I remembered Philadelphia ain’t quite the SEC.  Obligatory Katherine Webb bomb:

EDITORS NOTE TO MYSELF:  Taryn Hatcher would immediately shove that joke up my ass at intermission. 

The Rats peppered Jarry on two consecutive PP’s to start the game, but he held strong.

Pace was lively and pretty even at 5on5, but I’m sure some CMU grad student will tweet at me why the analytics #actually say I’m wrong (yes I know the shot advantage was in Philly’s favor).

Big chances for Malkin/Rust then ZAR/Lafferty on back-to-back shifts, but Robbie Hart made both saves.

Giroux saw a pile of rabbit turds in the penalty box and figured, “I’m hungry and the period is almost over”, so he hooked Letang.  The period would end with no blood and the Pens on the PP to start the 2nd.

2ND PERIOD

Early on, Golden Boy Blueger did a Bad Thing and vomited at center ice.  Didn’t work out.

PHI Goal – Farabee (9) A: Couturier [2:32] 1-0 PHI

Terrible turnover, but elite passing by the Flyers.

But then Ghost Bear, which is an idiotic nickname, had a turnover of his own.

PIT Goal – Kapanen (4) Unassisted [3:39] 1-1

 

Nice Finnish by KK, especially while eating that hot-and-ready pizza served up by Ghost.

About 5 minutes later, Michael ROFL took an interference penalty and the Pens went to work.

PIT Goal – Kapanen (5) A: Guentzel, Rust [8:41] 2-1 PIT

 

You, me, and Bud Dupree were ready to bitch about overpassing on that play, but it worked.  Malkin wouldn’t get an assist, but buy him a vodka for the great job on working it low to Rust.

Pens were feeling themselves.  Kapanen almost buried a natural hat trick like 2 seconds later, but Hart robbed him.

The Pens finally noticed that Ghost Bear was really starting to trip balls on the molly he took before the game, so two of them decided to set up a fire and roast marshmallows in front of Hart.  Poor Ghost was none the wiser.

PIT Goal – Rust (5) A: Malkin, Letang [10:45] 3-1 PIT

 

Nice to see Malkin rewarded for his nifty play at the blue line.  Too easy for Rust.

Flyers were desperate for a lifeline and Lafferty tried to give it to them with an offensive zone penalty.  Killed.

Shortly after the penalty expired, there was an absurd turnover where Letang passed it to McCann who wasn’t looking.  Tristan Jarry would like a word…

Here’s the replay.  Jesse’s video doesn’t show the initial turnover, but trust me, it was uglier than a gimpy raccoon with rabies on the streets of New Jersey.

 

Malkin went off for an iffy tripping penalty as the period was ending.  It would be the Rats’ turn to start a period on the power play.

3RD PERIOD

Pens haven’t had many of these leads going into the 3rd, so you really hoped Jon Taffer gave the speech at intermission.

Malkin followed up a successful Pens PK with an absolutely insane shift which should have resulted in 9 goals.  Somehow, it ended with a whistle and Lafferty in the box (again).

Jarry was having another one of Those Games.  You sensed the Flyers were getting frustrated, which culminated in Gritty Jake Voraceck (same face) being denied on a breakaway.

McCann also had a breakaway and fell down.

Shortly after a big Malkin chance, Penguin Killer Farabee showed up again.

PHI Goal – Farabee (10) A: JVR, Sanheim [11:00] 3-2 PIT

 

Not to be outdone, the Heart of the Pens’ blue line led a rush down the ice and made 2,000 fans sound like 20,000.

PIT Goal – Ceci (2) A: McCann, Freidman [12:08] 4-2 PIT

You just love to see it.  Silky passing.

Flyers would mount a push, but come on.

Just for good measure, the Soul of the Pens blue line, and my future father Mike Matheson, pulled out his dagger.

PIT Goal – Matheson (2) Unassisted [16:06] 5-2 PIT

 

The poke at the blue line is impressive enough.  But to have the awareness to keep your head up in that spot, see the goalie breaking, and then fire an accurate shot from that far away is elite shit man.

Ballgame.

RANDOM THOUGHTS:

  • Great win without Crosby.
  • Jarry stock continues to trend well.
  • Submitting my formal petition to Geoff for Recap duty anytime we need a Malkin wake-up game.  That’s three ‘caps in a row now I’ve gone into the game very worried, then feeling like he played his best game of the year.
  • Mark Freidman was fine.
  • Is Lafferty a sleeper agent?  4 shots for, 22 against, and a million penalties.
  • Great to see fans back, even if it’s only a couple thousand.  World gets a tad more normal every day.  If you can’t find a reason to be fired up about that, not sure what to tell you.
  • One day, Mike Matheson will return my letters.
  • Mac chase utley its always sunny in philadelphia GIF on GIFER - by Bludraven

East is gonna be a Race til the end.  Enjoy Wiz.

Thanks for reading.  Let’s talk hockey and exchange chirps on Twitter @GooeyHockey

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