-Greetings from the last row of C-2 in Mellon Arena. A simply perfect spring day in Pittsburgh. Mid-50s and not a cloud in the sky. We didn't account for a fairly minor detail like the Sun with this hazy shot, but if you didn't know anything about John Scull, you do know:
Here's the obelisk at PPG Place:
-Does that qualify as an obelisk? If not, let's just call it the big concrete pointy thing at PPG Place.
-We've walked by this business countless times during our time at Point Park College and at the Post-Gazette. We just can't help but wonder how big of a business is shoe repair these days:
-The UPMC/U.S. Steel/Whatever building:
-What pray tell is the benefit of jacking up a Dodge Ram?
-Someone's not a fan of the Flyers' retro look:
-Consol Energy Center:
-This might be the most obvious case of cherry picking at a hockey facility since Brett Hull was still playing:
-All kinds of television trucks out front:
-The big screen out front:
-Again, no idea where all this grafitti is coming from:
-We're starting to doubt if our phone's lense is all that clean:
-The towels and t-shirts being distrubuted tonight:
-Chris Simpson from Versus doing her thing:
-EN reader Lowell Murray spotted a jersey foul:
-Lowell also spotted this:
-NHL.com is reporting Philippe Boucher will play instead of Kris Letang tonight.
-For what it's worth, Letang did warm up. Sykora and Eric Godard did not.
-Martin Biron and Marc-Andre Fleury are the starting goaltenders.
-Kris Letang has been officially scratched along with Godard and Sykora.
-The announcment of Miroslav Satan being added to the lineup brings some applause.
-Luca Sbisa and Riley Cote are the Flyers' scratches.
Some sights around the arena. A Chris Kunitz jersey:
-The consoure near B-28:
-The infamous "Fartsmell" jersey of EN reader Steve Mazefsky:
-Daniel Briere is shorter than this kid. We think:
-Kevin Steven with a hair foul:
-FSN Pittsburgh's advertising budget has really taken a hit in this tough economy:
-Two brave souls:
-Mark Eaton No. 3:
-A Joe Sakic Noridques jersey:
-Another Kevin Stevens:
19:15: Mike Richards brings a puck across the crease and tries to jam it in on the backhand. Fleury stands his ground.
17:45: Claude Giroux whips a puck from the left wing. Fleury knocks it downs and flops on top of it to freze play.
17:15: Kimmo Timonen flops down to block a slapper by Matt Cooke in the slot.
16:54: Some more quality play by the third line as Cooke, Jordan Staal and Tyler Kennedy generated approximately four decent scoring chances in about 30 seconds.
16:01: Sidney Crosby controls a puck in his own end and is completely sandwiched by Darroll Powe and Richards. We assume the Flyers were incensed at the sight of Richards leaving his feet there. Especially since they were in a tussy over Chris Kunitz supposedly doing it in Game 3 on Timonen.
14:31: BIll Guerin snaps a wrister off from the right wing. Biron kicks it out. Crosby collects the rebound and punches it on net. Biron is there again for the save.
13:43: Cooke thumps Andrew Alberts in the corner with a hip check.
13:15: Knuble snaps off a rising wrister from the left wing. Fleury hops up to knock it down with his chest.
11:56: Kennedy attempts a wraparound but clunks it off the post. He had Biron totally out of position on that play. That was a sure goal.
11:01: Staal is sent off for roughing. Maxime talbot, Sergei Gonchar, Craig Adams and Brooks Oprik are on for the penalty kill.
10:15: Briere slides a pass to Timonen at the top of the slot. Timonen cranks a one-timer that is off the mark.
9:53: Gonchar beats a Flyer for the puck behind the net and wraps it around the boards clearing the zone.
9:28: Cooke steals a puck off Coburn at the right point and works it up ice killing some more time.
9:01: Staal's penalty is killed. Another nice effort on special teams for the Penguins there.
6:56: Satan gets his first scoring opportunity and he takes a pass from Malkin coming in from the left wing. He's pressured and snaps a wrister Biron appears to deflect wide.
6:08: Guerin gets a pass from Crosby in the slot but can't quite get a clean handle on the puck in order to shoot it.
5:34: Ryan Parent is nabbed for interference. Has anyone else's FSN Pittsburgh feed gone dead? Gonchar, Boucher, Crosby, Malkin and Kunitz are on for the power play.
5:12: Biron stops Malkin twice on two opportunities in tight.
4:59: Gonchar slides a pass over to Boucher on the left point. Boucher uncorks a one-timer Biron is able to eat up.
4:30: Boucher's not afraid to shoot. Malkin slides another pass to him at the left point. Boucher steps up and puts it on net. BIron kicks it out.
4:04: Biron's sharp so far. He kicks out another chance by Malkin from the left faceoff circle.
3:34: Parent's penaly is killed. The Penguins generated more than a few scoring chances there.
3:16: Kennedy rips a wrister from the slot. Biron traps it against his body.
2:20: Briere chases after a puck in the corner and gets washed over by Brooks Orpik like a wave. That almost wasn't even fair.
0:42: "LET'S GO PENS! LET'S GO PENS!"
0:00: End of period. Flyers 0, Penguins 0.
-The Penguins quietly controlled that period. The held the play down in the Flyers' zone most of the period. If not for a lucky bounce off the post on Kennedy's shot attempt a strong effort by Biron, the Penguins probably would've had a lead.
-We're liking the addition of Boucher to the power play. He wasn't afraid to shoot the puck.
-The Penguins are controlling the shots, 15-5.
-Malkin leads the game with three shots.
-Knuble leads the Flyers with two.
-The Penguins have an 11-7 lead in faceoffs (61 percent).
-Crosby is 6-for-8 (75 percent).
-Giroux is 3-for-3 (100 percent).
-Gonchar leads the game with 9:09 of ice time.
-TImonen tops the Flyers with 8:50.
-Powe leads the game with two blocked shots.
17:19: After almost three minutes of nothing, the Penguins ice the puck.
16:49: As the Flyers' ice the puck themselves, Matt Cooke skates roughly 80 feet on one skate while reaching down to examine the blade on his right foot. A pretty impressive sight.
15:46: Knuble flicks a backhander at the cage from the left wing. Fleury traps it against his blocker and freezes play.
14:10: A Penguin blasts a puck from the left point that hits Biron's stick and knocks it out of his hands. We'd love to tell you who it was but the television feed in our area has gone dead.
13:28: Daniel Carcillo carries the puck into the offensive zone and leaves a drop pass. Arron Asham steps up and from the left wing, he cranks a slapper from the left wing that burns Fleury on the glove side. A pretty poor goal for Fleury to give up. Carcillo gets the only assist. Flyers 1-0.
12:24: Attendance is announced as 17,132. It is the team's 110th consecutive sellout. Lowell sent us in two more jersey fouls:
11:35: Malkin dishes a feed to a teammate at the the top of the slot. That teammate blasts a one-timer that gets through traffic and it hits Biron. The rebound bounces out to Malkin to the left of the net. Malkin kicks it with the side of his skate and into the net. Biron immediately complains the puck was kicked in. The "Hey Song" is played:
-Officials go to the review. After a lengthy review, the goal call is reversed. Fans boo but it's the right call. Malkin booted it in. No goal. In other news, we just got a call that the FSN Pittsburgh feed has gone down for about ten minutes. We'll try to find something out.
8:59: Orpik touches up the puck behind the Penguins' net for an icing call. Briere hits him after the whistle. Orpik takes a slight hack at Birere. Briere gets two minutes for roughing. Orpik nothing. The Penguins got a gift there.
8:53: Hartnell just got lit up by Boucher on a big check.
7:37: Boucher cranks a one-timer from the right poing. Biron kicks it out.
7:25: One of the Flyers invites Boucher to a fight. Boucher declines.
5:05: A Flyers player cranks a slapper at the net. Fleury snags it with his glove.
3:40: Still no word yet on why FSN Pittsburgh signal has gone down. Pretty embarrassing.
1:44: A shot by Jordan Staal gets deflected and sails out of play.
1:12: A Penguins player appears to get hauled down on his way to th ecage. No call.
0:00: End of period. Malkin flings a wrister at the cage just as the horn blows.
-FSN Pittsburgh's signal has apparently returned. Still no word on what happened.
-Why can't the NHL seem to get its product on in the United States without issue? No other sports league has issues like these.
-That was a really lackluster period for the Penguins. They didn't seem to have much urgency that 20 minutes.
-The Flyers' weren't exactly playing like there's no tomorrow either. They just beat Marc-Andre Fleury on a bad goal.
-The Penguins have a 20-16 lead in shots.
-Knuble leads the game with six shots.
-Malkin tops the Penguins with four.
-The Penguins have an 18-16 edge in faceoffs (53 percent).
-Crosby is 8-for-13 (62 percent).
-Giroux is 5-for-7 (71 percent).
-Gonchar is still leading the game with 17:56 of ice time.
-Coburn is right behind him with 17:42.
-Coburn, Powe and Eaton each lead the game with two blocked shots.
-Note: A source at FSN Pittsburgh just confirmed there was a lightning strike at a the network's technical facility in Atlanta. It disrupted signals with FSN Pittsburgh, FSN Northwest and FSN Rocky Mountain. A Seattle Mariners broadcast was also interrupted by the outage.
18:54: Scuderi is nabbed for hooking. Hal Gill, Eaton, Cooke and Staal are on for the penalty kill.
18:23: Cooke works the puck up ice and kills some time.
17:47: After a shot from the right wing, Fleury kicks the rebound out to a Flyer in the slot. Fleury is able to stretch out and kick away his prime scoring chance. Big save by Fleury, but if he handled the rebound better, that save isn't necessary.
17:30: "Flerrr-Eeeee! Flerrrrr-Eeeeee!!"
17:08: Adams forces the puck out of the zone.
17:54: Scuderi's penalty is killed.
16:35: Boucher makes a weak play with the puck along the boards. Carle steals it and tosses it at the cage. It ricochets off Powe and goes right to Giroux who punches it into an empty cage behind a helpless Fleury. Amazing what happens when you just get pucks at the net. Put that one on Boucher. Not a great play by him. Carle and Powe get the assists. Flyers 2-0.
14:59: Biron eats up wrister by Biron from the left faceoff circle.
12:08: After Briere directs a shot on net that's denied, he wrestles with Crosby for the rebound. He gets his stick into Crosby's face and is called for high sticking. After a little crying, he goes to the box. Crosby, Malkin, Gonchar, Boucher and Kunitz are on for the power play. A goal here is a must for the Penguins.
10:55: Gonchar dishes a pass to Boucher at the left point that exits the zone. This power play never fails to frustrate.
10:24: Gonchar dumps the puck down ice. It takes a funny hop and hits an unsuspecting Biron in the leg to the left of the net and comes to a rest at the side of the crease. Satan jumps on it and tries to jam it in but can't get it by Biron who slides into position at the last second for the save.
10:08: The Penguins' power play is killed. Not much going on there.
7:20: Orpik drops Lupul with a big check along the boards.
6:58: Malkin tries to go one-on-one with Coburn but can't get by the defenseman.
6:48: Going back to Philadelphia. Hartnell cranks up a slapper from the right left wing. Fleury is pretty far out of his crease and gives up a big rebound. It kicks out to Knuble on the right wing and he bangs it home behind Fleury. Awful rebound and awful goal for Fleury to give up. He's come back to earth after Game 4. Lots of "fans" head for the exits. Richards and Carle get assists. Flyers 3-0.
5:35: Eaton upends a Flyer in the corner. That's two minutes. Gonchar, Adams, Staal and Orpik are on for the kill.
4:19: Crosby hasn't quit. He thumps Timonen to the ice with a shoulder check behind the Flyers' net.
4:05: Crosby is called for slashing. The Flyers will have a two-man advantage for 30 seconds. More "fans" head for the exits.
3:58: Fleury eats up a chance by Briere in the slot.
3:53: Coburn blasts a slapper from the right point that gets re-directed on net. Fleury is there to eat it up again.
3:35: Eaton's penalty is killed. Five-on-four for 1:30.
3:19: Staal pushes the puck up ice fighting off Timonen and Coburn. He pushes a backhander to the far side which Biron just gets a piece of. Timonen ias called for hooking. Four-on-four for 1:13.
2:05: Crosby's penalty is killed the Penguins will have a power play for 47 seconds.
1:18: Timonen's penalty is killed. The Penguins looked pretty weak there again.
1:00ish: Fleury has bee pulled for an extra attacker.
0:30: Play is halted as Kunitz and Richards hug it out. Malkin tried to hit Richards behind the Flyers net. Richards gives Malkin a slight cross check from behind. Crosby sneaks up on Richards and cross checks to the ice. Crosby gets the minor. Fleury returns to the net.
0:00: End of game. Penguins 3, Flyers 0.
-That might've been the Penguins' worst effort under Dan Bylsma. We can't think of too many flat, lifeless performances they've had since Michel Therrien was fired. And this wa a playoff game. They had a chance to close a series and get some apparently much-needed rest. This was easily the Penguins' worst game since February.
-The sad thing was, it wasn't like the Flyers did anything extraordinary to win this game. They got shots on net, they took advantage of some poor rebounds by Marc-Andre Fleury. But they didn't go all out to claim this win. They were nothing spectacular. They didn't exactly play like a team desperate for a win.
-The idea of Martin Biron getting a playoff shutout is still something we're having trouble accepting. Martin. Biron. Playoff. Shutout. He wasn't tested a great deal by any means but in all fairness, he simply made the save he had to make. He's had two solid efforts in a row.
-Biron recorded the first postseason shutout of the Pengins since Detroit's Chris Osgood turned away 22 shots in a 3-0 win in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup final last season.
-Biron's shutout was the first in Flyers' postseason history against the Penguins.
-Whatever is wrong with Kris Letang and not wrong with Petr Sykora, we hope it gets corrected/healed/fixed in time for Game 6. Boucher put shots on net during the power play and that was refreshing to see, but his turnover led to Giroux's goal. If Letang is able-bodied, he needs to play.
-Miroslav Satan offered nothing more but nothing less than Petr Sykora. It was like using newspaper instead of phone book paper to start a fire. If that makes sense in anyway shape or form.
-Fleury was not good tonight. After he totally dominated the Flyers in Game 4, He fell back to earth. The Asham goal and especially the Knuble goal were not good ones to allow. He needs to make those saves in order for the Penguins to win.
-The Penguins' power play is now 4-for-29 (13.8 percent). Really pathetic.
-The Penguins ended up with a 28-26 lead in shots.
-Knuble led the game with seven shots.
-Malkin, who was shutout for the second consecutive game, led the Penguins with four.
-The Penguins had a 32-27 advantage in faceoffs (54 percent).
-Crosby was 15-for-22 (68 percent).
-Giroux was 7-for-12 (58 percent).
-Gonchar led the game with 28:20 of ice time.
-Timonen led the Flyers with 26:26.
-Carle led the game with four blocked shots.
-Eaton, Adams and Boucher led the Penguins with two each.
-Correct us if we're wrong, but the Penguins have lost their past three consecutive white out games.
-Concerning the problems FSN Pittsburgh tonight, this is a press release from the station:
"Tonight’s Penguins playoff game on FSN Pittsburgh went off the air at 8:06pm due to a lightning strike at the network’s technical operations facility in Atlanta, GA. The strike disabled the facility’s uplink capability and service was interrupted for approximately 30 minutes until a backup facility could resume transmission of the network’s feed. We understand and apologize for the inconvenience and disappointment this may have caused the Penguins organizations, their fans and all of our viewers. We at FSN Pittsburgh do not take these matters lightly and will continue to make it a priority to provide a quality viewing experience for our teams and their fans."
-Fleury moved into a tie with Ken Wregget for second place on the team's all-time goaltending postseason losses list. Each player has 12. Tom Barrasso is first with 42.