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Sens coach hopes team gets over ‘stage fright’

May 14, 2013, 11:39 PM EDT

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The Pittsburgh Penguins made things look fairly easy against the Ottawa Senators on Tuesday, taking a 1-0 series lead thanks to a 4-1 win. Sens head coach Paul MacLean told the Ottawa Citizen that it might be good to get the team’s worst game out of the way early.

“If we had any kind of stage fright or youthful jitters, that should be behind us and now it’s up to us to make it a series,” MacLean said.

Speaking of youthful jitters, Erik Karlsson was his usually frank self about the game and a turnover in specific.

“We want to come out of our end with the puck, but you know, sometimes [expletive] happens,” Karlsson said.

“They played a little bit better than we did today. We’ve got to come out better next game and be more prepared. They scored an early goal and that set us back a bit.”

It’s too easy to blame one player in a pretty lopsided game, yet some might point to Craig Anderson. The Sens’ No. 1 goalie took some responsibility for the defeat.

“It wasn’t good enough, we have to be better and that starts with myself, giving my team a chance to win,” Anderson said. “You’ve got to lead by example, go out there and do the job … you can always be better. At the end of the day, I didn’t stop ‘em.”

  1. pitpenguinsrulez - May 14, 2013 at 11:47 PM

    Paul MacLean and Andy Reid…the walrus twins

  2. andrewproughcfe - May 15, 2013 at 12:00 AM

    Just like the Pens’ garbage defense was the primary culprit for Fleury’s failings against the Islanders, I think Craig Anderson needs to be given the benefit of the doubt. His defenders gave him almost nothing to work with.

    As well as Vokoun is playing, I think the lineup changes and renewed emphasis on aggressive defense are what helped the Pens to give up fewer goals.

    • jpelle82 - May 15, 2013 at 9:56 AM

      a couple lucky bounces and quick whistles helped as well. pens did a good job at lifting sticks and clearing the crease last night but there were definitely some chances the sens can look at and feel good about going into game 2. tyler kennedy gets a tip of the hat for that penalty he took for cross checking the sens out of the crease while the puck was staring at a gaping net. defense let the sens down.

  3. girouxed - May 15, 2013 at 1:15 AM

    What does this article have to do with Philly at all pitpenz? You’re lucky the flyers didn’t make the playoffs kid. The penguins have it easy with the current series and the last. Wait until they play a team with some talent.

    • therealdeal18 - May 15, 2013 at 1:29 AM

      it has nothing to do with philly girouxed so why are you commenting? The ‘kid’ said something about andy reid in relation to how fat he and maclean are and their mustaches, don’t make it about the flyers. And I love how everyone who hates the pens says ” don’t underestimate the isles they’re better than you pitt fans are giving them credit for “. But when we beat the Isles its cuz they’re “just an 8 seed”. So if the pens go through the 8, 7, 6 seeds to get to the cup finals its their fault? The lower seeds were good enough to eliminate the higher seeds from the playoffs but when the pens beat them they’re ‘no good’.

      Youre sad bias against the pens is making you look dumb, youre clearly bitter so why don’t you grab a box of kleenex and watch the rest of the playoffs from your moms basement and avoid commenting, you might seem less stupid then.

      • jimeejohnson - May 15, 2013 at 9:08 PM

        Kleenex are still out of stock after Obama won the Presidency for the second consecutive time!

    • handsofsweed - May 15, 2013 at 6:54 AM

      Andy Reid doesn’t coach a team in Philly, does he? No? Yeah.

    • fbothharbaughs - May 15, 2013 at 8:19 AM

      hahaha, that’s rich!

      “You’re lucky the Flyers didn’t make the playoffs…”

      Happen to see who’s leading the Kings in playoff scoring, “kid”?

    • drone501 - May 15, 2013 at 8:44 AM

      might that be the flyers who are at home.

    • steelpenbucs87 - May 15, 2013 at 9:12 AM

      Seeing as how Andy Reid coaches the Kansas City Chiefs I don’t really see what you’re driving at.

      And why would the Pens be unlucky if Philly made the playoffs? Is it because we beat you 3 out of 4 games this year?

      I’ll keep this short – I know you’re in a foursome teeing off with Giroux, Hartnell, and Lavi in an hour or so and I don’t want you being late.

  4. chanceoffleury1 - May 15, 2013 at 1:44 AM

    The Pens have had Anderson’s number all season. He was having the year of his life, but he’s had atrocious numbers against the Penguins this season. He’s now had 8 games total the entire year with a sub .900 S% and 3 of them have been against the Pens. It’d definitely make for an interesting storyline if they go down a few games early and he gets pulled. At this point it’s still way too early for the Sens to be counted out but its still something to think about.

  5. billobrienschindimple - May 15, 2013 at 7:56 AM

    girouxed- So the pens are supposed to be scared of a team that had enough talent to finish 12th? bwahahahahahahahahahaha

  6. fbothharbaughs - May 15, 2013 at 8:20 AM

    Eiggles? Eiggles??

  7. benrob99 - May 15, 2013 at 8:23 AM

    Pens have a way of making the vast majority of goalies look “shaky”. Imagine facing a power play that has three SURE fire Hall of Famers ( Sid, Geno, Iggy) and one guy that has a shot to end up there (Letang). That’s a pretty tall order for any goalie.

  8. malkinrulez - May 15, 2013 at 8:47 AM

    Andy Reid coaches in KC there is no Philly connection. Why am I not surprised he didn’t know that. Also Richards and Carter are in LA , another transaction u might have missed

  9. phillyphanatic77 - May 15, 2013 at 8:52 AM

    What the Sens need to do is stop taking dumb penalties. The Pens did not have a dominant performance, once again, they’re just so talented that they can swiftly capitalize on mistakes. The 2nd period was a good microcosm of the game… the Sens controlled play, but they were unable to capitalize on some scoring chances, then they take a dumb penalty allowing Pittsburgh’s deadly PP to make it 3-1 right at the end of the 2nd. If that game goes into the 3rd at 2-1 then the Sens would’ve had an infinitely better shot at coming back. But a two-goal lead (then three) is a lot for a team that struggled to score all season. They did a very good job limiting Pitt’s 5-on-5 chances, so if they can keep that up and not allow the star-studded PP to see the ice they have a much better chance. Plus, Vokoun did a good job, but he’s beatable when you get him going east-west. He’s better positioned than Fleury but certainly doesn’t have the post to post speed/athleticism.

    • erbaker67 - May 15, 2013 at 8:59 AM

      Its hard to agree with a Philly fan but it is true. Vokoun made some stops and the defense came through but ultimately, the Sens controlled the game for the most part. The first shift of the game is what Penguins hockey is about. Quick transition, stretch out the defense and attack the open ice in the offensive zone. The Sens had some chances where its a bouncing puck and they had an open net and puck bounced over or a Pens defensemens stick got just enough of them to miss. I am glad the Penguins won, it is all about winning, no matter how you win, its a win but the Penguins need to play better coming out of the zone and making the smart/right play.

  10. f2maestro - May 15, 2013 at 8:59 AM

    The Sens were entirely too soft on at both ends of the Ice. There were multiple times where Pittsburgh forwards had 2nd, 3rd and sometimes 4th chances at rebounds before they got semi cleared from the blue paint. At the other end, the forcheck for 40m of the game was sooooooooooooooooooooo weak. The Pens had so much time to setup, move the forwards into the positions they wanted, then were able to breakout in a controlled fashion. Without a more agressive stance on D and a stronger forcheck, the Sens don’t stand a chance, even with Anderson being on point.

  11. myroncopesflask - May 15, 2013 at 9:09 AM

    Stage fright is a valid excuse for round 1 game 1. If you want to say your young players lack experience say that. I really hope people are not expect a series like the one the Pens had against NY. The islanders strengths just happened to the be the Pens achilles which is why they lasted 6 games.

    Too many people put a ton of stock into how the Sens beat a fake ass injured habs team. The Sens know that what ever line Karlsson plays against is going to get torched. That Malkin-Kunitz-Neal line looked like the goddamned Cirque Du Soleil…
    I will be surprised if this goes past 4 games. 1975

    • jimeejohnson - May 15, 2013 at 9:12 PM

      Not a Flyer fan. But around 1975, the Flyers were the ONLY NHL team to beat the Soviet Union’s Red Army team. The Flyers successfully defended the USA and Canada that night, unlike every other North American team. No question that the Penguins are the better Pennsylvania hockey team this year. The only question is how far they will go in these playoffs. Pittsburgh/Los Angeles Stanley Cup finals?

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