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Discuss: Penguins cruise to 1-0 series lead

May 14, 2013, 10:13 PM EDT

Penssensgetty Getty Images

If the Ottawa Senators are going to upset the Pittsburgh Penguins in their second-round series, things need to go differently than they did in Game 1 on Tuesday. The Penguins won 4-1 to take a 1-0 series lead.

Let’s discuss the contest.

  • Craig Anderson has been absolutely fantastic, but how much does tonight’s loss weigh on his shoulders? It’s hard to beat him up too much against a team that makes just about any goalie look bad? (Example: Pascal Dupuis‘ 4-1 goal was a ludicrous snipe.)
  • Speaking of Dupuis, he now leads the Penguins and NHL with six playoff goals. How much of his success is based on linemates? How underrated is he?
  • Evgeni Malkin had another fantastic game. What are the odds that he’ll land the second Conn Smythe of his career this summer? Who’s your frontrunner for the postseason MVP early on?
  • Tomas Vokoun looked shaky at times early on but only allowed a single goal. How much leeway is he buying for himself by winning three games in a row? Is he more trustworthy than Marc-Andre Fleury at this point?
  • Don’t forget that the New York Islanders lost badly to the Penguins in Game 1 before giving Pittsburgh a serious run for its money. Can Ottawa get back into it? What does Paul MacLean need to do to get his team back into the flow of things?
  • Zero points for Sidney Crosby tonight. Such a slacker.
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  1. bru308 - May 14, 2013 at 10:15 PM

    Looked in much better control of this game as compared to the Islanders series. Great start

  2. malkamania71 - May 14, 2013 at 10:20 PM

    Geno looked strong! 11 more wins..

    • whammy71 - May 14, 2013 at 10:49 PM

      Better look out – the Cryer fans and HandOfWeed will call you out for being overly confident and saying “11 more wins”

      • handsofsweed - May 15, 2013 at 6:47 AM

        Living rent-free in your head, Whammy. Rent. Free. (You forgot the S in my name. It has nothing to do with Weed, dummy. Figure it out.)

        But yeah, Malkamania, you’re right. Geno looked like a Conn Smythe type of character for sure. But about those 11 wins? Let’s just get 1 win on Friday and then worry about game 3 in and of itself.

  3. JoeAvg - May 14, 2013 at 10:24 PM

    Dupuis is very underrated and much improved. When he came to the Pens all he would do offensively is fire a slapshot everytime he had an opening; now look at what he can do. That shot on the PK was deadly and would have beat any goaltender in the league. Yes it’s the Crosby effect, but that’s what makes him such an outstanding player. Elevating those around him.

    And yeah, the Pens looked so much better tonight than in any game in the first round.

    • Tyler - May 15, 2013 at 8:56 AM

      It’s hard to imagine that Hossa was a throw-in on the Dupuis deal the Pens made a few years ago.

    • sportsfreak13 - May 15, 2013 at 9:13 AM

      Yea I think this is going to be a different kind of series. There wasn’t any clogging the neutral zone which would lead to turnovers and a quick counterattack this time. The senators play a different style then the islanders, and I personally think its a better matchup for the pens. As far as Dupuis goes he is by far the most versatile player on the roster (he plays left,right,and center when needed, PK, and 2nd unit PP). In his interview last night he credited Crosby for all his success. He said when you see a player with his talent work as hard as he does it drives you to work harder. He was a 4th liner when we won the cup and now he is Crosby’s winger. From undrafted free agent to the leader in goals in the playoffs. Great story. The best part is when he was asked about his expiring contract, he all but said for certain he would be back. Money doesn’t matter the most to him, which is what he said.

      • basedrum777 - May 15, 2013 at 9:50 AM

        2 points for Tyler on the joke.

        Sports: one thing: Duper NEVER plays the PP. He led the league in goals at even strength b/c of that (or did for a long while). I agree he’ll be back. Hopefully not too much of a bump. LGP!

      • sportsfreak13 - May 15, 2013 at 9:53 AM

        Yea he does, He on the second unit with TK, Morrow, Niskanen, and whoever coach either another D-men or forward depending on the situation. Check the tape.

      • basedrum777 - May 15, 2013 at 10:56 AM

        If that’s true my bad. I just know it was a big deal he never got PP time in the reg. season but still had great stats. Kind of a badge of honor.

  4. valoisjoeybfeld69 - May 14, 2013 at 10:27 PM

    Was not a great game, but Pens played well enough to win. Expect both teams to play a littler better next game. Great coaches don’t need to call a TO with 28 secs remaining to protect their players, and they sure has hell don’t put their best players on the PP during the last seconds when the game is secured. Take note Mr. McLean. Mr. Bylsma gave you a little lesson in humility.

    • andrewproughcfe - May 14, 2013 at 11:08 PM

      Two completely different games. No reason to compare this one to the all-out brawl the Senators had with the Canadiens in the game where McLean called the timeout. And he coached brilliantly to win that series – continuing to harp on that timeout is just silly.

      • basedrum777 - May 15, 2013 at 9:52 AM

        Agree with Andrew here. I’d HOPE Bylsma calls a TO to get folks OFF the ice not on but to each his own. Not condoning name-calling but my wife agreed he looks a bit like a walrus…

  5. nunan - May 14, 2013 at 10:30 PM

    Pens are going to win this series but I don’t think it will be easy for them. I’m not surprised they won the opening game at home but I expect the Sens to improve as the series progresses, things get rough, and they become more familiar with each other.

  6. pitpenguinsrulez - May 14, 2013 at 10:30 PM

    Zero points for Crosby? I guess thats a big deal!? I think not just because he didn’t have the greatest of nights doesn’t mean he didn’t contribute. He made a great play to help set up the 3rd goal. He missed a clear opportunity on Anderson in the first five minutes of the game but that’s because he didn’t get a clean pass. Crosby will score his points eventually. Vokoun looked solid in net. Sure he looked a bit shaky early on but you’ll have that. The first goal you can’t really blame him because you’ll have those tricky bounces that go in. The defense looked sloppy in the first especially in front of the net but they got better as a whole throughout the game. My only hope is that someone pops that pos Chris Neil in the face…you would love him on your team but you hate when he’s on the opposing team. Overall pretty good effort by the Pens in this one…hopefully they continue it come Friday night.

    I just hate the two day break in between games would so rather see the games take place every other day but I guess we all can’t be happy. GO PENS

    • JoeAvg - May 14, 2013 at 10:55 PM

      Yeah I’m not thrilled about the two Friday night games. Cuttin into my work week is over barstool time. Oh well.

    • basedrum777 - May 15, 2013 at 10:01 AM

      I think its amazing that we could win without SC going nuts. If we need his contributions then we’ll get them. He can rest in the meantime.

  7. wisdomnfl - May 14, 2013 at 10:31 PM

    Good start but long series. Sens won’t be going away easily. Pens need to play better.

  8. billobrienschindimple - May 14, 2013 at 10:32 PM

    Super Duper!!!!

    Dupuis has to be a Pens legend. Thrown in as an afterthought in the Bossa trade he has done nothing but improve year in and out. The thing about Duper is that while he is not spectacular at any one thing, he does everything well. Undrafted to leading the NHL SCP in goals. Having great linemates helps for sure, but a ton of credit goes to the man himself who never quit.

    • jpelle82 - May 15, 2013 at 11:21 AM

      for his age it blows my mind how well conditioned he is. he flies out there, all out every shift. he is always the guy first in chasing pucks, and the last guy to change. that shorthanded goal last night was a well deserved reward for hard work.

  9. Stiller43 - May 14, 2013 at 10:38 PM

    I hope all the “experts” who said anderson would slow the pens down didnt see tonights game (or the previous 3 they beat him in THIS season)…don’t wanna disappoint them before their bed time!

  10. whammy71 - May 14, 2013 at 10:54 PM

    Where’s PhillyPhalicSymbol – he chatted up big bad Craig Anderson and his .950 save percentage vs Habs. Guess Sid, Geno and company got lucky tonight. PensNation is still shaking in their boots over your predictions!

    I’m telling ya….I got the skinny on the prime spots for the parade. Let me know if you wanna come out and see what a Stanley Cup parade is all about.

    • basedrum777 - May 15, 2013 at 10:19 AM

      Please stop making Pens fans look like cocky bastards…Please.

      • whammy71 - May 15, 2013 at 10:39 PM

        I’m not being cocky. Just stating that the Pens are going to win the Cup and there will be a parade. And I’ve invited all the Filthy scum….I mean fans to come out and see what a Cup parade is all about.

  11. maalea - May 14, 2013 at 11:03 PM

    A solid win by the Pens. The Sens couldn’t finish early when Vokoun was fighting the puck. That was the difference.

    The Pens have more skill players and they had more impact in this one.

  12. kinnyjames - May 14, 2013 at 11:19 PM

    Mistake, I don’t think any of Dupuis’ goals were on the power play. Just makes his stat lines even more impressive.

  13. colossal87 - May 14, 2013 at 11:20 PM

    Whammy, save me a spot where I can hoist a thick crosby fathead along the parade route.
    Can’t wait to see The Franchise sweep the sad sens.

  14. manchestermiracle - May 14, 2013 at 11:58 PM

    Sens made it easy for Pitt by not moving their feet. They looked slow and uninspired. How long do you let the puck-carrier coast along into your zone before you stand up? Sens were chasing the puck all game and never seemed to wake up.

    • pdmjr - May 15, 2013 at 8:47 AM

      They moved their feet but didn’t do much

  15. footballfan - May 15, 2013 at 7:13 AM

    Had to listen to the game on the radio and it came across as a good one. I’m not too sure I agree with “crush” being used in the title. The Sens were in the game up until the SHG and were definitely putting the puck on the net. With 36 shots I’m amazed more didn’t go in. Looks like Disco Dan made the right call on the starting goalie.

    • pdmjr - May 15, 2013 at 8:46 AM

      Vokoun didn’t have to make any great saves last night. Sens had opportunities to score but missed the net on most if not all of them

  16. billobrienschindimple - May 15, 2013 at 8:07 AM

    footballfan- Don’t be surprised if Ott out shoots the Pens in every game. They lead the playoffs in shots. Thing is they are not good shots, they just constantly throw the puck towards the net.

    • footballfan - May 15, 2013 at 11:12 AM

      I agree totally, but you sure would that that after 36 shots more would make their way in.

    • basedrum777 - May 15, 2013 at 11:47 AM

      Almost no shot is a bad shot.

  17. myroncopesflask - May 15, 2013 at 8:49 AM

    Before this series started I pointed out the Sens lack of team speed and depth as the two main reasons why they will have trouble keeping up with the Pens. Those of you that said I was crazy do you now understand what I meant by that? If you look at the shot total to decide who should have won the game you really do not know what you are looking at. I realize this is just one game but holy smokes.
    I really hope people are paying attention to Kris Letang and Erik Karlsson. I will never take the comparison seriously until Karlsson learns how to play some type of defense and figures out a way to be somewhat noticeable about when he plays the Pens. If the Pens have finally figured out that after they get a lead all they have to do is get back on D and wait for the other team to step on their own pecker this series is done in 4 and the rest of the playoffs will just be a formality. 1975

  18. billobrienschindimple - May 15, 2013 at 9:49 AM

    @sports freak

    Last time Dupers contract was up he signed for the same amount he was making. You are dead on, he has found his home and money is not a factor. Another reason he will be a Pens legend for years. Easily the best return on investment in the league.

    • footballfan - May 15, 2013 at 11:22 AM

      I know the Crosby haters will be all over this, but when you hear Duper’s comment about Sid that says a whole lot! The idiot I’ve been arguing about assists on a Caps blog doesn’t get it. Dupuis came to the Pens as an after thought. Sid made him want to be a better player. Last time I checked, that’s what a team captain is supposed to do. During this season I have heard of a few players that wanted to play for Pittsburgh because of Crosby… Anyone hear of a player wanting to go to the Caps to play there????

      I live in Indy so hockey news is hard to come by. No way anyone can say I’ve just been listening to the Pitt news.

  19. ironman721 - May 15, 2013 at 1:25 PM

    Good but not a great game by the Pens. The puck control was much better. The “w” is still the most important thing. Let’s Go Pens🐧❗

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