ReGameCapDay 19-20: Blackwood Becomes a Wall

The Penguins were in New Jersey for the first half of a weekend back-to-back last night. As you know by now the Penguins would again be without Sidney Crosby, Patric Hornqvist and Kris Letang.

It’s not a night in New Jersey without a weird bounce early that gives the Devils the lead. That happened again seven minutes in when Travis Zajac somehow found the back of the net.

A rare turnover by Dumoulin, a weird bounce, a 1-0 Devils lead.

The Rest of the period was kind of blah, to be honest. The Penguins looked like they were trying to figure out who they were. The Devils looked like they usually do. The Penguins carried the play but couldn’t get the results.

I could retype the last line of the first period recap for the rest of the game.

The Penguins carried the play but couldn’t get the results.

Chance after chance after bloody murray fucking chance. Mackenzie Blackwood decided tonight of all nights would be the night he gets pissed off for being named Mackenzie and play lights out. We are talking about a guy who entered this game with a save percentage in the .88’s. We finished the game one Enterprise commercial away from Blackwood becoming Brodeur.

To cap things off, the Devils would score on their first shot of the period with like 1 second left.

You couldn’t make this up. Coleman throws the puck to net that happens to catch the bend in Murray’s pad that covers the skate, and it hits at the perfect angle to send the puck back towards Coleman instead of away from the net as intended. It looks like hell, because it is, but Murray is a very good controller of rebound directions and this is just one of those things that seems to happen in New Jersey.

The Penguins played really hard. The thing about the Penguins right now is they are pushing teams to the brink without their best offensive player and their best defensive player. They also lost Nick Bjugstad in the second period and played the rest of this game with three centers. Despite all of this they continued to pressure the Devils, and if there is anything to be excited about it is that the Penguins are playing really good hockey right now, the results just aren’t there.

Because weird shit happens in New Jersey,…

JACK JOHNSON Assisted by Galchenyuk (4) & Lafferty (4) @ 8:00

Snipe City from Johnson as Dan Kingerski gets a raging boner seconds before smashing a White Claw can against his forehead before typing out a 1700 word redemption post. Hell of a shot by Johnson here. Galchenyuk picks up his 300th career assist in his 500th career game. Sam Lafferty continues contributing at the NHL level.

The Penguins would absolutely pour it on the rest of the third but Mackenzie Brickwall was just insane. The Devils would get two shots in the third period. TWO SHOTS. Fortunately, both were normal hockey shots so Murray was able to save them. The Penguins threw eleven shots on goal in the third, 39 in total for the game, but the Johnson tally would somehow be the only one that would go in.

GAME

GAMEDAY 20

The Penguins returned home overnight to prepare to take on the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Maple Leafs also traveled overnight after playing the Bruins in Toronto last night. The Maple Leafs are 0-3-1 in their last four games and haven’t exactly played all that well this season. The Maple Leafs, completely healthy, have played the way you would expect the Penguins to have played in October with their injury list. Fortunately for Toronto, they get to face a Penguins team that will most likely be without its 1C and 3C tonight after Nick Bjugstad left last night’s game early and Sullivan didn’t sound hopeful post-game.

The game is on NHLN, there isn’t a lot to dive into here. The Maple Leafs have sucked. The Penguins have played really good hockey but can’t seem to break the flood gates. This game is going to play out one of three ways, either team is going to just open up for 7 goals, neither team is going to score and the shootout will come down to Sullivan vs Babcock, the game is so boring we fall asleep before the third.

I would bother with the lineup card but that is a waste of time right now, the Pens will need to either call someone up or Chad Ruhwedel will get in a game finally as Riikola shifts to the wing. It sounds like a perfect night to crush some Toronto hearts to me.

LET’S DO THIS