Sunday, December 2, 2007

Hockey Night in Your Mom. PENS LOSE.

4 - 2


Yet again, it took the Pens about 50 minutes to wake up and start playing hockey.

We're not heroin addicts.
We're not gonna relapse into the down times just because we've lost a game after winning three games.

The upcoming week will see 4 games in 7 nights.
Gretzky is coming to town.

Start changing your sleeping patterns now for the tail end of the upcoming week.


Right off the bat, we see the Pens will be wearing their darks for the game tonight.
We have documented it numerous times that since the lockout, the Pens have worn the darks on the road only a handful of times. And they have mostly all been in Toronto.
The only one that wasn't was in Washington earlier this season.

And during the game, Steiggy mentioned that Toronto wears them for Hockey Night in Canada.
And then it hits you that the Pens always play in Toronto in Friday and Saturday nights.

Sabu gets the start.

Both teams came out of the gates just mehhing around.

Toronto was cycling later, and Mats Sundin hustles to a loose puck along the boards and gets it out to Mark Bell, who puts it home past a stunned Sabu. 1-0.
Bell's dad celebrated the goal with a 6-pack.

Before you can collect yourself, Sykora trips someone up and goes to the box.
The PK unit comes through.

Crosby had a nice chance later, as he pushed it to Mach 11 into the Toronto zone.
But no dice.

Christensen looked sharp while getting a stint with Malkin and Sykora.

As the first period waned, Letand and Sydor don't know what's going on.
Letang retreats into his own zone, which was almost a huge mistake.
Well, it was a huge mistake, but the Leafs didn't make him pay for it.

Just when you thought the refs weren't in Toronto's pocket, probably the worst call in history took place late in the first.

Roberts gets checked from behind and runs into some dude on the boards.
Roberts put his hands up, which made it look like a shove.
He instinctively put his arms up to protect himself.
You know a job when you see one, but that wasn't one.

But then there was a job.

We didn't catch a solid replay that conclusively showed that this Leaf was the last guy back.
But if he was, that's a penalty shot.

The dude goes to the box for being a chickenshit.
Then the next play, another Pen heads to the box.

The first period ended, and the Pens went into the first intermission like a hooker -- with a bad taste in their mouth.


The Leafs get the fresh sheet of ice to work on their power play.

Bell was on the doorstep, but he wasn't counting on Frank Pietrangelo quantum leaping into Sabu.
What a huge save.

But nope, didn't matter.

Because the Pens rushed up the ice later with the puck.
They lose control of the puck when Eaton can't take Malkin's tape-to-tape pass.
The Pens leave Sabu out to dry, as Toronto goes the other way on a 2-on-0.

And then they were up 2-0.

Matt Stajan goes to the box for holding up Sid.
The Pens get a big Powerplay.

They can't convert.
The Maple Leafs end their PK with their goalie making a nice save and freezing the puck.
The fans go nuts to appreciate the save and the PK.
What an underestimated momentum booster.

Steigerwald and Errey spent the better part (or worst part) of three minutes to tell everyone about the Toronto organization and their current woes.

That talk gets abrupted because Crosby gets on the ice.

And then we're all witness to something that makes us lose respect for Vesa Toskala forever.
A blatant job as Toskala trips up Crosby. Bush League.

The Pens get on the powerplay as Pens Nation dreams of Roberts plowing Toskala later on in the game.

Roberts goes to the box during the PP, but takes McCabe with him.
10 seconds on a power play without McCabe on the ice is usually money in the bank.
Banks are closed on Saturdays. The power play ends.

The game reached the halfway mark, and the Pens had barely sniffed the net.
But we've seen enough of the Pens to know that means nothing.

Jordan Staal went for a seat when hooking a Leaf in front of the net.
Time for the Pens PK to dominate.

Antropov parks in front of the net and makes benefit glorious nation of Kazakhstan.


McCabe heads to the box again soon after with a holding call.
The Pens just had to score on the ensuing power play.

And yeah, they didn't.

The Leafs almost scored again, with Blake chopping at Sabu.
Orpik facewashes him, and as Blake retaliates while still being tied up, Ruutu comes in and just love-taps Blake in the face.

At least that was something comical as the game started drifting towards the third period.


The highlight of the night up to that point was the new-to-Pensblog Peter Frampton Geico commercial.
[ Talkbox Wikipedia ]


The third period started with the ice still being tilted towards Sabu.

The Pens continued playing at a John Leclair pace.
But it took Sykora going to the box to wake the Pens up.

They buzz on the PK, getting numerous chances, which culminated with Toskala stopping Malone on a breakaway.

We're not professional hockey players, but deke or something.

If you don't know Hal Gill is a monster, it usually sets in somewhere during the third period.

It's amazing what one goal does.
The Pens were down 3-0. 12:00 left. Things were looking bleak.

Then the Pens crash the net, it hits something.
11:45 left. "They have plenty of time. Let's go."

But wait a tick.
They go to the War Room, which definitely wasn't a long-distance phone call.
Actually it was a direct line to Jon Ferguson's house.
Doesn't matter.

goal stands. 3-1.

Malkin and Sykora had a rush later on, but Sykora inexplicably pushes the puck to Malkin as they cross the blue line.
Malkin and Staal hump each other looking for the puck.

The Pens still continued to buzz. They were smelling blood.

The Leafs had another odd-man rush later, but Sabu keeps the Pens in the hunt while Daryl Sydor takes away most of the options.

With 4 minutes left, Father Time makes an appearance.

The Pens got a power play late.
And after some skirmishes, the Pens get a goal.

Christensen plays Plinko with Toskala's balls, and it's 3-2.

And for the first time ever, we dream of the Penguins tying this game up with the sole intent of seeing Toronto suffer, and not as much as the Penguins winning the game.

It was time for Therrien to take his timeout.

The Pens had a couple chances to tie it with Sabu pulled.
After a tussle on the boards, the Leafs get the puck.

Ponikablowjob puts it into the empty net.
Pack it up.

  • Bing: 1A
  • Christensen, Malone: 1 G

  • Did it look like the Pens were forcing passes all game?
  • This game was frustrating. Is is still early in the season?
  • Happy birthday to Dana Heinze and Ryan Malone

At the morning skate (which nearly none of the Pens in the lineup participated in), there was some cool stuff going on.

First off, there was a little-guy hockey team on the ice at some point in the practice.

-- "Hey, don't commit so quickly."
MAF: "Thanks."

That caption felt like a free-throw.

And here's Talbot, wearing all of Sid's business during the aforementioned morning skate.

-- Question --

Maxime Talbot fanatics:

We know that none of us have seen Max recently because he's been injured,
but do you recall if he was clean-shaven before he got injured?

Did he shave his facial hair just to pull off the Sid look?

Do we have lives?


Seth said...

Yes, Talbot was clean shaven before his injury. I was at the game he scored a shorty against NYR and his face was as smooth as a baby's bottom

Anonymous said...

Talbot was shaved before he got hurt. I remember the lack of a fomanchu (sp?) and it was quite sad, since the thing looked awesome.

Anonymous said...

max was clean shaven before his injury.
rumor has it that he shaved his glorious handlebars off because his play was slacking...
and then he got injured. figures.

luvnmypens said...

Talbot shaved before Friday nights game. During the Friday morning preskate he still had it, but when he was being interviewed by Stan Savern on Sportsbeat it was gone.

Malkinian said...

Man did they look flat last night. And Therrien mixing up the lines again?? And I know this was the 2nd of a back-to-back, but w/ Fleury pitchin the shutout against Atlanta and then getting 6 days rest and playing solid again against Dallas, I think he should have gotten the start last night. This is taking nothing away from Sabu, who played very solid, just questioning some more of Therrien's decisions.

Hooks Orpik said...

Pensblog: Talbot shaved his fu manchu because he had went 14 games without a goal. The very first game he shaved it, he scored, but then would get hurt.

wilsmith said...

There's 0 comments as I type this but I'm sure there's a bunch already submitted with the answer to the Talbot question.

He had shaved a couple games before he got hurt, well, before he started sitting out. I'm not sure which game he got hurt because apparently he played with it for a bit.

Talbot is the best, did you see that jacket the other night?

Anonymous said...

Is Darren Pang the new goalie coach?

Anonymous said...

Does anyone remember a time when the Pens have won both of their back-to-back games? I don't think it's happened since the lockout....

GordyHowitzer said...

Wow. Folks know a lot about the history of Maxime Talbot's facial hair.

But did he poop that day? And if so, what was the consistency?

J/K. We're all losers.

the general said...

is it wrong that i shaved my goatee to look like talbots to go to on the games before he got hurt?

we can all try to look like max, but none of us can live up to the beast that is, max talbot...

Anonymous said...

why start sabu after maf's performance friday? the pens stink, this is getting frustrating as hell.

stokes said...

I, too, question the decision to go with Sabu, for all the same reasons as well. that being said, i dont think that goaltending had much to do with that loss, the first goal notwithstanding.

They flat out looked like crap. where was the tape to tape organized breakout that they had against the Stars just one night before. where was the intensity from just one night before? are the pens going to be like the steelers and play up or down to whatever team's level they are playing.

one game is just one game, but that sucked last night.

Korn said...

The caption on the Fluery pic is quality. Well done.

That game and 3 gin and tonics put me to sleep last night, missed the third period and woke up to a blank screen. BOOOOOOORING. Except El Sid, he fights every single shift.

Can't wait for Gonch to get back.

canaanregulatesblog said...

11:02 anon...

The pens beat the Stars and the Coyotes back to back in january of 07

Anonymous said...

Hate to break it to you guys, but playing back-to-back nights (or other brutal schedule anomalities) is THE reason to start a backup goaltender.

stokes said...

Anon 7:39

hate to break it to you, but there are goalies out there that can handle that workload and fleury's been hot; why not start him?

Loser Domi said...

Yeah, the MAF pics were really nice--I did a little write up over here:

it's not whoring if you do it for free, right?

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