Tuesday, May 19, 2009

And So it Begins!!

I will be honest, I don't know much about the Carolina Hurricanes. I knew going in that Cam Ward did something in the 2006 playoffs. I was also aware that the Staals were brothers. There are also some former Penguins in the coaching staff of the Canes, but that's about it.

The game started with 2 quick Penalties on the Canes which were killed off almost effortless. The Make up call would come quickly as Miro Satan would get a holding call. The Canes Power play on the other hand looked lethal. Fleury had to make some ridiculous saves to keep the game at zero. The Pens kill it and Satan makes up for the Penalty by taking a head man pass coming out of the box and burying it behind Cam Ward to give the Pens the 1st goal of the game. Not more than 84 seconds later Malkin would stretch the lead to 2 goals with a backhander from the slot. The Rest of the 1st period was dominated by the Pens only to have Cam Ward come up big on a few occasions.

The 2nd period was a complete 180. The Pens were the team getting dominated. Fleury was sharp in keeping the score at 2-0 for as long as he could. I don't know what it is with 2nd Periods, but the Pens seem to come out flat every time. Maybe it's he long change, who knows. Some Crack Pipe would cut the lead in half for the Canes but Fleury held his ground and escaped still holding on to a one goal lead.

The Pens would add another goal in the middle of the 3rd period with a power play goal from Phillipe Boucher. Maybe a soft goal by Ward. it seemed to trickle between his glove and the top of his pad. Either way 3-1 Pens. Game over , right? nope. I heard stories of the resiliency of the canes. I know about the last second goals against the Devils and the Bruins. They almost did it to the Pens. Late in the 3rd Brooks Orpik gets called for hitting to hard and the Canes go on a power play. With the goalie pulled, 6 on 4 They cut the lead to 3-2. Corvo maybe, i forget. They weren't done yet, a bad bounce on 160 FT shot almost tricks Fleury and Eric Staal almost ties it with a deflection from the door step. There was definitely no stop or quit in the Canes, they played until the buzzer and almost got rewarded.

The Canes lost two important players in Tuoma Ruutu and Erik Cole. Cole went down with what looked like a knee on knee from Matt Cooke. No word on either one. But 2 days off between games will definitely help them out.

It seems this series will pick up right where the Caps series left off. Good skating, Heavy hitting and strong goaltending. The best thing about it though, is the fact that Oveckin isn't on the ice. I would rather defend against Eric Staal that AO any day of the week.

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