Penguins take a 3-0 stranglehold

The Pittsburgh Penguins are continuing to play amazing hockey following an excellent regular season. In Ottawa, the Pens scored 3 third period goals to take the game 4-1 and increase their lead to 3-0 in the series. They are the only team in this year’s playoffs to win the first 3 games, with the Stars having a chance to match them today. The Penguins are one win away from their first playoff series victory in seven years. The Ottawa Senators will try to duplicate the feats accomplished by the 1942 Toronto Maple Leafs and 1975 New York Islanders, who are the only NHL teams to have erased 3-0 series deficits. An interesting note is there was a 33 year gap between those comebacks, and 2008 also marks 33 years since the last one.

Will history repeat itself?

The Pens are proving that offense can be the factor that wins games. In the first game, Crosby and Hossa were shutout, but Malkin shined. In the first two games, Malkin tallied 6 points, while in the last two games Hossa and Crosby have tallied 6 points. Those three currently lead the NHL in playoff scoring, all with 1 goal and 5 assists through 3 games. Who said offense doesn’t win games?

Well, for those that say defense and goaltending win games, let’s check out how the Pens have fared in that area.

After letting in 18 goals in 5 games last year versus the Senators (and 13 after 3 games), the Penguins have only allowed 4 goals in 3 games this year. There are many reasons for this: the improved defensive play of defensemen like Gonchar, Scuderi and noticeably Orpik, the all-around solid play of rookie Kris Letang, the long-reach of Hal Gill and his penalty killing prowess, and also the defensive, two-way play of guys like Crosby, Malkin but most noticeably Hossa. Case in point, on a Pens’ PP, the Sens manage to steal the puck and embarrass Malkin playing the point, but the fast back-checking of Hossa not only takes away the puck, but then he goes down to block the shot. What a pickup!

But all of this pales in comparison to the main reason for their improved defensive game:

The vastly improved play of Marc-Andre Fleury.

After going 1-4 with a 3.76GAA and a .880 SV% last season versus the Sens, Fleury has turned around his game, with the help of a more experienced, better defensive team, and is now leading the NHL with 3 wins and tied for 1st with a .956 SV% (tied with Turco) and a 2nd placed 1.34GAA (Turco in 1st after 2 games). [This excludes CuJo’s 1 game performance.] He also is tied for 1st with one shutout (joining Turco, Nabokov and Biron).

The first question is, do the Senators have enough in them to overcome a 3-0 deficit versus the Penguins? I think that answer is obvious. Brooks Orpik summarized it nicely here:

Ottawa, energized by playing at home for the first time in the series and the return of captain Daniel Alfredsson from a knee injury, was intent on making a statement in the first period. But Fleury turned aside each of the Senators’ 14 shots, and the Penguins entered the first intermission with confidence. “We kind of looked at it as a period won because we were 0-0,” defenseman Brooks Orpik said. “We said, ‘That’s the best they’ve got.’

Now I know many people will say the Pens are beating a rented mule (nod to Mike Lange) in the Senators, so we have to ask if the Pens can continue their success against a much better defensive team in the Rangers/Devils (if the Flyers win and Habs win). I personally don’t see the Caps (if they win and the Habs win) giving us any problems, as I’ve been adamant about on here for years. The only other matchup possibility would be against the Bruins were the Habs to falter, a strong possibility given the Bruins and Habs play in the last two games. Were the Habs to falter, I’m quite confident the Pens would be able to succeed where the Habs failed.

Anyways, it’s a good time to be a Penguins fan. All the cogs are clicking and this team is seriously raising eyebrows around the NHL. It’s time to watch out for them! Here’s to a 4 game sweep in Ottawa!

186 Responses to Penguins take a 3-0 stranglehold

  1. morrissey says:

    Ottawa fans at least no their team is playing like shit, which is apparently more than you have noticed.

  2. morrissey says:

    Jesus, you whine more than Crosby.

  3. morrissey says:

    Would that be the amazing save percentage that's lower than Price's? How many Sens have been crashing the net and screening him? We'll let that guy over there with no hands hold up his fingers to make the counting easier for you…

  4. morrissey says:

    Tampa Bay would be outplaying and out shooting Ottawa right now…

  5. morrissey says:

    You can report my loose translation then too: "Bru you are a *****ing moron"

  6. morrissey says:

    The difference is the 123 replies you have made in this thread.

  7. habstruefan says:

    Do you honestly think you can get rid of me.
    theres more ways then one to come back on this site trust me.
    You deserve being told once in a while,stop being a baby and take it like a man.

  8. Archion113 says:

    Well i hope the Pens play like this in the next round.  Because only scoring 2 goals on a team that isn't even playing is sad.

  9. HABSSTAR says:

    Sure sure.  You admitted they tanked the last game and said it was a smart move.  When you started taking insane heat on it you changed your mind.  Mentally weak…just like your team. 

    Anyhow even with the Habs less then stellar play they are gona play what 1 more game then the pens in the first round.

    You're the biggest homer I've ever seen, heard, or read.

  10. Archion113 says:

    Why do you blog to yourself?

  11. HABSSTAR says:

    They are up 3-1 in the series.  The only way it could possibly be better at this point is if they swept the series. 

  12. HABSSTAR says:

    Actually I've heard they were going to call it the "Pens Tank"  or maybe even the "Pool" where everyone goes to dive!  LOL!

  13. HABSSTAR says:

    Keep douching!

    It's your team that tanked to avoid another!

  14. HABSSTAR says:


    Ha Bru beat you to it.

  15. HABSSTAR says:

    It changed into a Habs article about half way through.  That's where your numbers come from LOL!

  16. BruMagnus says:




    Crosby gets the icing on the cake with the empty net goal to end up the Senators playoff hopes.

    The only sweep in the first round! Let's hope it's the first of many for the Penguins!!

    PENS WIN!!!

  17. BruMagnus says:

    I was taking it all in. Enjoying the scene unfolding before my eyes. Smoking a well-earned victory cigar.


  18. BruMagnus says:

    LOL indeed! But unlike Habs or Leafs or Canucks fans that go off when I bring up a Penguins related point in one of their posts, have you heard me complaining to shut up about the Habs on here? No. Because I welcome all debate, unlike some…

  19. BruMagnus says:

    Same advice for you, buddy.

  20. HABSSTAR says:

    You're the type of guy who would cheer me on if I was beating a puppy to death as long as I had a Pens jersey on while doing it!

  21. BruMagnus says:

    Five * not four *… what were you trying to say? Your meaning was lost in translation.

    PS, Pens sweep!

  22. BruMagnus says:

    What happened to your Sens prediction? I told all those morons who picked Sens players rather than Pens players in their pools that they had already lost. Serves them right for picking with their asses instead of their heads.

    The Diver got the icing on the cake with the empty net goal to seal the SWEEP!!!

  23. habstruefan says:

    You call this playoff hockey.They played playoff hockey for one period and that was the last game in the fist period.I did not see total dominance at all.I was the most boring series i've seen in years,and thats no bullshit.The pens will be getting a rude of wakening in the second round.

  24. leafy says:

    I've got it!  How about the "Bru Center"?

    Sorry Bru, I couldn't let that one pass.

  25. chimoty says:

    It was a general attack at all message board members to spell Staal right since the whole league knows their whole family…you just turned it into an English lesson that's all

  26. jayhabsjay says:

    never ever call me a retard you ***** sucking son of a *****. get me banned i could care less. this site should be called brumagnus' penguins rant anyway. its pathetic.

  27. jayhabsjay says:

    oh well, have fun playing the rangers pittsburgh. we'll have fun with the flyers. (providing things go as theyare now)

  28. HABSSTAR says:

    How big of you! 

  29. Radio says:

    I didn't pick any Senators players in my pool.


  30. Radio says:

    Nah, Habs-Pens series would be worse.

    As someone else said, that series would end up being 59 minutes of 3-3 hockey given the BS calls both those teams get.

  31. HABSSTAR says:



    BWAH HA HA! 

  32. morrissey says:

    Oh he takes it daily, right up the ass where he likes it.

  33. oilcountry88 says:

    After this series the way the Sens played this is what i would do.
    -Fire Bryan Murray from GM
    -Trade Emery to LA for 2nd round pick 2008
    -Buyout Gerber
    -Trade Spezza to edmonton for Stoll,1st pick 2009,O'marra,Smid,3rd round pick 2008
    -Re-sign Stoll
    -Lose Mezaros to FA
    -Lose Redden to FA
    -Lose Stillman,Commodore to FA
    -Sign Ryder,Bouwmeester,Prospal,Liles,Orpik,Theodore
    Try and fit it under the cap




  34. careyprice31 says:

    Will it change my life or any other hab fans life if u hate price or the habs I highly doubt it

  35. careyprice31 says:

    Lolololololololololol.  Im sure the fantasies u refer to involve MAF  and crosbys Lips

  36. habstruefan says:

    Ah a bitter laughs fan eh!

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