Word came down before the game that Malkin not only wouldn’t be playing tonight, he’d be heading to the IR along with Teodors Blueger. With Johnny Boy heading in the opposite direction, the lineup was thus:
Rodrigues as the second line center and the wrong Gaudreau making his Penguins debut on the 4th line. *eyes Thursday bourbon*
I decided to switch things up and watch the first period. This was my first mistake. OK, it is actually way far down the list for mistakes made today, but insofar as it relates to this game it was numero uno.
‘Hey Siri, what does it look like when you have a one line team and a bunch of cast offs and never-will-bes littering your bottom 6?’ Let’s just say it was fitting that the game was in Newark.
True story: I once was doing tree work for this rich lady in Fox Chapel. She had immigrated from somewhere in Central America and told us that she went straight to Newark, but only because the ticketing agent didn’t understand her pronunciation of ‘New York’. She said she went back to the airport the same day but there were no flights back. Hard to blame her.
I’m telling stories because I’m hoping they’re more entertaining than the game. They are to me at least.
Halfway through the first Jack Hughes introduced himself to Jarry and the Penguins.
Jarry did precisely as he was taught. Hughes followed the lead of many snipers currently in the league and tried the impossible shot. I guess when you shoot the puck 327,561 times practicing this kind of stuff is more possible.
A few minutes later some Russian guy on the red team would steal from the Penguins playbook and throw a puck out of the zone for the delay of gamer. The powerplay responded as though they remembered that they were, indeed, in Newark. You’ll just have to imagine the Penguins scoring with the man advantage.
I really did watch the rest of the period and I really don’t recall a second of it. It’s definitely better that way for the both of us.
For the second, I was back at work. Trust me, I really do love my job. Tonight it was better than watching whatever the hell was happening in Newark, of this I am positive.
Eight minutes into the second the refs were positive that Rusty Nutz would hold some Russian guy in red and the 28th ranked powerplay in the league would take the ice, making the following completely inevitable.
Lurch would probably be better at clearing the crease.
While they were still announcing the first one, Son of Sever would throw one into some traffic and puck luck took care of the rest.
They skated around some more. Every 4th time people went over the boards Sid was involved so that was neat. But otherwise… let’s just say it’s obvious when players actually belong in the NHL and when they don’t.
Finally, with a minute left, ERod the Ugly would draw a penalty and this time the Pens showed us how it’s done.
Guentzel (12) from Letang (16), Kapanen (14) – 19:47 – PPG
Perfect tip drill. Stopped the bleeding.
For 19 minutes and 55 seconds, both teams would play hockey. Not a gawddammed thing would happen. The Pens tried to push, the Devils remembered their roots. The Pens launched 22 shots in the 2nd but were limited to 10 in the 3rd until this happened.
Rust (10) from Letang (17), Tanev (8) – 19:55 – EV
For reasons I have yet to ascertain, the Penguins decided to remove this GIF between when I created this post and when it was published. I guess wiping it out of the memory banks altogether isn’t the worst thing, though it was actually a sweet shot by our Rusty buddy.
Great play by Rust.
Too little too late.
- Jarry was still great stopping 32 of 35
- Sid’s line drew the toughest assignment and Pernel Kernel was at his hacking and whacking best but they still managed to apply good pressure
- CV-Or remembered why he was waived and Jankowski practically begged to be the next to be waived
- Ceci is still surprisingly good at his job. I like the cut of his jib.
- Still need a crease clearer