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Discuss: Hot third period propels Penguins against Bruins

Mar 12, 2013, 10:12 PM EST

Brandon Sutter with Sidney Crosby, James Neal Getty Images

Once again, the Pittsburgh Penguins proved that few leads are safe when they’re involved. The Boston Bruins managed to hold onto a 2-0 lead until the third period on Tuesday, but the Penguins finished strong and got a 3-2 win in regulation.

Let’s get to the talking points.

  • Brandon Sutter scored the game-tying and game-winning goals about three minutes apart, pushing his season total to eight tallies. Is it safe to say he’s an acceptable replacement (or maybe even an upgrade) over Jordan Staal for Pittsburgh?
  • Can the Penguins be a legitimate Stanley Cup contender with this high-powered offense, even if they need to out-score possible problems on defense and/or in net?
  • What does this game tell you about the Bruins? Did they take their foot off the pedal too much once they earned a 2-0 lead or was Pittsburgh just that good?
  • Going further, does this outcome alter how you feel about which squad might be the top team in the East? Is it Pittsburgh, Boston or someone else?
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  1. bigbadbruins77 - Mar 12, 2013 at 10:15 PM

    Pathetic! I’m extremely disappointed. Really? !!? Can’t hold a 2 goal lead with line 6 mins left. Keep it up and you won’t make it out of the first round.

    • killerpgh - Mar 12, 2013 at 10:53 PM

      It’s one game. As a Pens fans I still think the Bruins/Pens are the best teams in the East. And in a 7 game series between the 2 I wouldn’t be shocked at whatever the outcome was.

    • 8man - Mar 13, 2013 at 7:26 AM

      Reminded me of the collapse against the Caps a couple of weeks ago. I found myself just hoping the Bs could get to OT so they’d get a point for the effort. They just wilted and had nothing offensively in the third.

      Hats off to the Pens. They have some serious firepower.

    • jpelle82 - Mar 13, 2013 at 10:01 AM

      they couldve held it but bylsma starting sneaking the crosby line in against the seidenberg pairing there in the second period and started opening it up a little bit. home ice made a difference and the pens won just enough faceoffs it seemed like in the 3rd despite getting dominated all game in the circle. chara did a good a job all things considered…i think i counted only one good scoring chance while he was out there on crosby – the one-timer kennedy put right on the logo. blame seidenberg, that turnover that led to the game winner was egrigious.

    • whosennext - Mar 13, 2013 at 6:40 PM

      Being a Pens fan as well, I would be interested in how they match-up come playoff time as well. With the Bruins having played the night before, their legs may have tired out, especially when you consider they play a physical game. Either way, a playoff match-up between the 2 would be awesome considering they are the 2 best teams in the Eastern Conference. Playoff hockey changes the game between the 2 considering they will both be playing on more equal grounds then in a compressed regular season when teams are not on the same schedules.

  2. steelpenbucs87 - Mar 12, 2013 at 10:20 PM

    Great work by the team to keep pressing and never give up. When you have the scoring power that te Pens have you can overcome deficits very quickly – as evidenced by this come back and the Flyers comebacks.

    After the first period the Bruins got out worked by the Pens as they continued to cycle and drive pucks deep and generate scoring chances. You could just feel that once they potted one past them that they would be able to get more.

    Not a game that will show up on the stat sheet but a great game out of Crosby and Duper – all over the place out there.

    Good game – time to get ready for the Leafs in 48 hours.

    • mordock57 - Mar 12, 2013 at 11:59 PM

      I was at the game tonight and I completely agree… while not scoring, Crosby was doing everything possible to make something happen out there. And I’m glad you mentioned Dupuis, who was flying and deliering some excellent hits tonight. The Pens started to outplay the Bruins in the second (after a horribly flat first period, unlike them this year) and completely started to dominate in the third. Once Kunitz got the ball rolling, it was a landslide of momentum in the game’s last six minutes. Just fun to watch. :-)

      • valoisjoeybfeld69 - Mar 13, 2013 at 7:54 AM

        Agreed. Crosby is without a doubt the best player in the world, and not even in his prime yet. If he remains free of injuries we will be entertained for years to come watching his dominance of the game.

  3. modellforprez - Mar 12, 2013 at 10:22 PM

    Easy to see why these teams are contenders. Great come back Pens. shine suddsy shine. lastly we dont wait long for the rematch either 5 days

  4. steelers88 - Mar 12, 2013 at 10:23 PM

    Surprise! Surprise! Surprise! The defense has played pretty well the last 2 games.

  5. murtdurt - Mar 12, 2013 at 10:25 PM

    Penguins didn’t play great in the first but were easily the better team for the next 40 just take a look at the shots. Looking forward to st.pattys day

  6. steelers88 - Mar 12, 2013 at 10:30 PM

    I have faith that Shero will make a trade to improve the defense.

  7. bruinsfan19 - Mar 12, 2013 at 10:33 PM

    Bruins looked extremely sloppy after the first period . Khudobin stood on his head to keep it a 2-0 game. None of Pittsburgh’s goals were his fault all bad defensive collapses.

    • hockeywithdrawal - Mar 12, 2013 at 11:01 PM

      Could have been fatigue to a certain extent.

  8. mj1818 - Mar 12, 2013 at 10:35 PM

    Sutter had a lot of people wondering before the season started, Staal was a fan favorite and didn’t want to see him go but understood why. It appears that Sutter might be an offensive upgrade but we still miss Staal on the PK where excelled.

    • killerpgh - Mar 12, 2013 at 10:50 PM

      That’s the crazy part. Staal is the better offensive player and defensively they are close to with a slight advantage to Staal, imo. But based on early results it doesn’t appear that way. That being said Sutter is the perfect replacement for the Penguins that didn’t Staal’s offensive with a healthy team. Cheaper and as about as good defensively and on the PK. The offense Sutter is kicking in is a bonus. The worst thing to happen to the Pens/Staal relationship was Crosby and Malkin both getti g hurt in the same year. Staal became needed to produces point and last year when Crosby and Malkin both returned Staal continued to concentrate more on offense and less of defense.

      • ucaneverscorenoughgoals - Mar 12, 2013 at 11:40 PM

        Killer,

        Great Summary!! Spot on with everything you said.

  9. Stiller43 - Mar 12, 2013 at 10:39 PM

    Im not ready to call sutter an upgrade for staal, but the whole package (dumoulin, 8th overall pick, and sutter) was WAY more than equal for 1 year of staal.

    Pens definitely got the better of that trade, no questions.

    And F yeah, go pens!

    • killerpgh - Mar 12, 2013 at 10:57 PM

      When it was looking like the lockout was going to cancel the season I was worried Shero might get investigated for raping the Hurricanes in that trade. Staal is the better player, but the Penguins got a great return for a player that was going to leave without any return in a year anyways.

  10. tdrusher225 - Mar 12, 2013 at 10:42 PM

    This is what the Bruins get for sitting back. You can use the fatigue excuse all you want, but generating offense like the Nashville Predators when you have a chance to put away the best offense in hockey is going to lose you games. Another blown 3rd period lead is a disturbing trend for Boston.

  11. pdmjr - Mar 12, 2013 at 10:43 PM

    I like the Pens as they are. They rotate 8 defensemen. Fleury has been solid. Boston lost because their coach is making a lot of mistakes. This ain’t New jersey claude

    • pens919209 - Mar 12, 2013 at 10:58 PM

      I’m pretty sure that Claude Julien wasn’t the guy who tried to make a cross ice pass in his own zone and ended up putting the puck on Sutter’s stick in the 3rd.

      Oh, and the Penguins would still benefit greatly from a defenseman who can clear the front of their own net.

    • chanceoffleury1 - Mar 12, 2013 at 11:23 PM

      Fleury hasn’t had a S% above .900 in 5 games now. Call me crazy, but that’s not what I would define as “solid”. He’s been “ehhh….” at best. The only thing solid around Fleury has been the offense that keeps solidly bailing him out. He played well the second and third periods, but Boston only put about 10 shots on goal after the first. I still consider him elite, but he hasn’t been elite lately. At all. I keep telling myself that he’ll get hot around playoff time and I just hope I’m right….

      • bmscalise - Mar 12, 2013 at 11:49 PM

        This is why you need to look at more than the box score. Fleury had a subpar game in Philly, but he was as good as could be expected tonight (and has been solid, although not great, all year). He didn’t have a chance on either of the Bs two goals. The only reason his save % is lower is because the Pens only gave up 16 shots. They dominated puck possession after the first 10 mins. Flower doesn’t deserve any criticism for tonight: his low save % is a testament to how soundly the Pens dominated for the final 2.5 periods.

      • chanceoffleury1 - Mar 13, 2013 at 12:45 AM

        Fair enough. Initially I thought he could have had that Chara goal on a good night, but after watching the replay I didn’t realize how strong the screen was that Bergeron set up. I still think that, outside of tonight, he’s had the potential to be better in recent games. Perhaps I’m just being extra critical since he’s my favorite player, but I just think back to the 2008 and 2009 Cup runs and I know he can return to that form and be a shutdown goalie. He had moments earlier this season where he just absolutely shined, even when the defense was bad. Still a solid win tonight as a team, though.

  12. chanceoffleury1 - Mar 12, 2013 at 11:10 PM

    Sutter is clutch, man. He’s had a couple great moments where he came up big already this year. Can’t wait to see what he does in the playoffs. Tonight was his night, though. Definitely making some room for himself as a solid long-term addition to the locker room. It’d be nice if they could feed Flower whatever their giving Kunitz and Sutter.

    I have to say, as much as Boston got outplayed after the first period, their PK is just WICKED good. Like, disgusting and filthy and shouldn’t even be allowed to be that talented, type of good. I mean, 97.7% success rate on the road??? It’s even better after they shut a couple penalties on the Pens down tonight. Sometimes whenever I’m watching them I think that they take penalties on purpose just so that we can all drool over their penalty killing. I hope Malkin comes back by Sunday. We’re gonna need him to try and get anything past them.

  13. 19to77 - Mar 12, 2013 at 11:25 PM

    Hard-fought, well-earned win by the Pens. However, this game said more about the Bruins to me. They had a disappointing 17-shot effort on the night including just 4-5 in the entire 3rd, but still scored 2 goals and held that lead most of the game. Plus, even with their backup in net, the guy stands on his head and makes over 30 saves. The Pens are a phenomenal team, but a half-hearted effort for the Bruins was a hard-fought win for the Pens. The Bruins are capable of being a MUCH better team than they were tonight. And it was still that close.

    Not taking anything away from a great Pens win, though!

    • ucaneverscorenoughgoals - Mar 12, 2013 at 11:55 PM

      You pretty much just did by saying “half-hearted effort for the Bruins” = “hard-fought win for the Pens”

      Would you think I was taking anything away from the bruins backup goaltender if I told you the penguins had shots clang off the the posts 7 times?……Probably.

      Or how about that the bruins “half hearted effort” may have looked worse if the penguins had their two time scoring champion and last years MVP in their lineup?

      I agree that the bruins didn’t shoot enough and their backup played well. But, the Pens won that game because in the last 6 minutes the Bruins game up 3 even strength goals…..end of story.

  14. bmscalise - Mar 12, 2013 at 11:57 PM

    I hope the Pens look back on this game for inspiration as they go forward. They earned this win: they outworked the Bs to dominate puck possession and gave them very little outside of the two good chances they scored on (which Flower had no chance to stop). When the Pens want to play defense, they can do so at a competent level – and they did tonight. They aren’t and won’t be a dominant defensive team – but they can be solid. It’s the perfect example of a team winning because they played the right way and stayed patient.

  15. spavs412 - Mar 13, 2013 at 12:09 AM

    We shouldn’t sit Depres he us solid on D and going to get better. Gotta wonder why the B’s felt they could sit back for almost 50 min. It almost worked but I think it was only a matter of time. Should make for a great rubber match on Sunday

  16. broadstreetbeatdown - Mar 13, 2013 at 12:57 AM

    I see the Hens getting another one way ticket to St. Andrews courtesy of the Flyers again. I can’t wait till the playoffs.

    • theageofquarrel - Mar 13, 2013 at 5:19 AM

      Obviously this uninformed lawn coil hasn’t been watching at all this season.

    • pens919209 - Mar 13, 2013 at 10:31 AM

      Well it will be hard for the Flyers to send the Penguins packing in the post season if, you know, the Flyers don’t make it to the post season.

    • steelpenbucs87 - Mar 13, 2013 at 10:40 AM

      See normally I’m susceptible to trolls getting under my skin, but here…. it’s just too funny.

      You think you’re actually going to make the playoffs… it’s adorable.

  17. Stiller43 - Mar 13, 2013 at 1:40 AM

    Broadstreetbeatdown,

    You think you guys are actually gonna make the playoffs?! HAHAHAHAHAAHA

    They’d have to win like 75% of their games from here on to even have a chance….seeing as how they havent been able to manage being a game above .500, i highly doubt it…

  18. ironman721 - Mar 13, 2013 at 6:10 AM

    🚨⚠Warning we have a troll advisory! broadstbeats#ff has been spotted trolling in another Pens article. This person is considered extremely stupid. Engaging him in direct conversation can cause serious loss in IQ points! You have been warned!🚓🚔📢

    • broadstreetbeatdown - Mar 13, 2013 at 1:31 PM

      Yes, because the excessive use of emoticons just screams that you are the pinnacle of the intelligence quotient. Silly boy, a number 8 seeded Flyers squad vs Pitt is their worst nightmare.

      • steelpenbucs87 - Mar 13, 2013 at 2:51 PM

        Yeah but you have to get to the 8th seed first…

      • handsofsweed - Mar 13, 2013 at 4:40 PM

        Bull$hit. You haven’t been around long enough to know that we ALL want another crack at you in the playoffs? You aren’t severely alarmed at the Pens FINALLY figuring out last week that if we don’t talk smack/fight/take cheap retaliatory shots @ your players, then you cannot beat us.

        You know damn well. You watched it happen. We turned the other cheek for two periods…and the result was an elitely-skilled team embarassing a lesser one.

        Please. PLEASE get your a$$es into the playoffs.

      • mordock57 - Mar 14, 2013 at 1:33 AM

        What handsofsweed just said. If by some hockey miracle (and that’s what it would take right now) the Flyers make the playoffs, Pens fans would be thrilled. A first round exit to the Pens would be the sweetest revenge, like sipping nectar, but we’d also laugh just as hard when Boston or Montreal ran the Flyers out of town in five games or less. That said… don’t hold your breath. Miracles aren’t common.

  19. ironman721 - Mar 13, 2013 at 6:26 AM

    I did not like the Sutter trade at first, but I stand corrected. Bennett is going to fit in nicely. Who’s next? Let’s go Pens🐧❗

  20. pdmjr - Mar 13, 2013 at 6:33 AM

    Bylsma should play Despres more. I think he will be traded soon

    • podevil - Mar 13, 2013 at 7:14 AM

      I hope not! Despres is way more talented than Bort or England…better skater, and better puck handler.. I doubt if Shero is going to make any moves at all..but if he does..I think Kennedy should be the one to go..being paid a lot of money for an average player

      • pdmjr - Mar 13, 2013 at 8:59 AM

        It looks like they are showcasing Despres. I think he’s has been very good, not perfect but for a rookie I like his ability. Has great size and will get bigger. Thats why i don’t think they will get value trading him for a stay at home D. They do need someone anyone to move players away from Fleury, especially on the PK. They just let them stand there.

        As for Kennedy, he works hard but has little stats to show for it, However what would they get for him? He usually has been a very streaky goal scorer in the past and that can help come playoff time.

        I just think that Fleury gets too much blame, England and Orps need to be better in front of him

  21. tlndma - Mar 13, 2013 at 7:14 AM

    Fatigue was a factor fo the Bruins, after playing the night before. The Penguins are to good to not give a 60 minute effort. Julien needs to give the Krejci line a kick in the ass.

    • podevil - Mar 13, 2013 at 7:18 AM

      The Pens speed game is the reason for the fatigue…they just kept coming….

    • hockeywithdrawal - Mar 13, 2013 at 8:18 AM

      I actually agree with you, as a Pens fan. I do think that once we have Malkin back, the defensive match-ups will get more interesting, though…so I’m going to call the two a wash. Great game by the Pens to come back. They did a great job of trying to wear down Chara and Lucic with the body – I’m sure they’re paying for it this morning!

  22. jeb7524 - Mar 13, 2013 at 8:43 AM

    No way Despres gets traded. I would watch for Orpik to be gone and Despres to take his place.

    • mordock57 - Mar 14, 2013 at 1:38 AM

      Orpik is a guy come playoff time that any team would salivate for. No, he can’t really shoot, but he makes life hell for opposing forwards. I’d be stunned and dismayed if he were traded. I also don’t see see Despres going anywhere. They seem to really like him and he’s been playing well.

  23. nhstateline - Mar 13, 2013 at 9:23 AM

    This was Boston’s third game in four days and fourth in six. It was their second in two. The night before they’d played an always tough Ottawa team into a shootout. It’s not a long flight from Ottawa to Pittsburgh but there is getting out of Kanata to the airport, clearing US customs getting from the Pittsburgh airport to their hotel. They probably got to their Pittsburgh hotel at 3 AM. Recently in Boston, we saw a Leaf team that had done something similar fade the same way as the game went on. This schedule is going to produce nights like this for every team so it’s absolutely fair. The Washington fade was a bit different than this because, in that case, the Bruins just stopped skating when they got ahead. This was a little of that, some bad decisions, some fatigue and a Penguin team that was very, very deserving and should have already been ahead by the time the middle of the third period rolled around based on play, and the number of posts they’d hit. I wouldn’t read much into this beyond the Pens and Bruins both being good teams.

    • danel18 - Mar 13, 2013 at 10:24 AM

      Aw poor bruins they are finally playing a schedule like every other team in the nhl

      • nhstateline - Mar 13, 2013 at 10:31 AM

        it’s not whining. It’s the fact of the matter. Everyone else does have to do this too so it is fair. The Bruins have benefited from playing teams that have had to do it and I gave you an example of one. Last night they got bit by it. There’s a reason why they play series with days off (usually) in-between games: it’s a much fairer test than what we see in the NHL regular season most but especially this year. Until then, it’s hard to really conclude very much about one meeting telling us much about the distance between one team and another.

    • tlndma - Mar 13, 2013 at 11:52 AM

      Next meeting is Sunday. Does Pittsburgh play saturday as B’s host Capitals.

      • killerpgh - Mar 13, 2013 at 12:14 PM

        Yes the Penguins pay the Rangers on Saturday.

  24. tsi431 - Mar 13, 2013 at 11:19 AM

    Anyone else notice how the Pens puck handling skills are just dreadful during penalties since Malkin went out? Whether they are passing or receiving, they are constantly loosing the puck.

  25. govtminion - Mar 13, 2013 at 11:50 AM

    I’ll be interested to see them again on Sunday after both teams play the previous afternoon (Pens have the Rangers, Bruins have the Caps) to see if the third period fatigue we saw from Boston last night was due to exhaustion, or if they’re just not good at finishing games.

    • bgrillz - Mar 13, 2013 at 1:02 PM

      Pittsburgh took it to them from period 2 on. Khudobin kept the game scoreless. And this was without Malkin playing as well. You run those 3 lines out there with Sutter emerging of late, and Bennett flourishing on the Neal/Malkin line, rest won’t matter. They just keep coming. They have 100 goals already this season for a reason.

    • bgrillz - Mar 13, 2013 at 1:07 PM

      To add as well, the Bruins, against what many call, a soft defense, got 5 shots, 7 shots, and 4 shots vs Pittsburgh for a game total of 16. The Pens also took the body on Boston, which is something a lot of teams are afraid to do.They also got better in the face off dot as well.

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