Pens 3-2 win, Detroit leads series 2-1.
This was the most exciting non-overtime game I have seen in years. Each team carried the play for extended times (“ebbs and flows” as I call them) and both goalies had to make great saves. Crosby furthered his reputation as the face of the NHL with a 2 goal performance as his team was up against the wall. Being on NBC in primetime, the game should boost the NHL in the States.
Below is commentary on both goalies with video. I apologize in advance for commercials when links are selected.
23 shots, 21 saves.
Chris Osgood finally had to face the barrage from the Pens in Game 3 and the Pens broke through. Pittsburgh was buzzing all game long and finally put substantial pressure of Osgood and the Wings defense. For the most part, Osgood was up to the task but two of the three goals. Some of his saves-
Fantastic compusure in complete choas – http://www.nhl.tv/team/console.jsp?hlg=20072008,3,413&event=PIT56
Get’s a stinger on this Malkin shot while repeats the same aggressiveness as save at end of Game 1 – http://www.nhl.tv/team/console.jsp?hlg=20072008,3,413&event=PIT772
First time Osgood looked overwhelmed (watch after save) in the series – http://www.nhl.tv/team/console.jsp?hlg=20072008,3,413&event=PIT783
Get’s help from the iron and then has to reach back to grab it – http://www.nhl.tv/team/console.jsp?hlg=20072008,3,413&event=PIT890
NHL.com picture of the day taken during save link above – http://www.nhl.com/nhl/app?page=FrozenMoments&service=page – GREAT PICTURE!
Goal One – http://www.versus.com/nhl?articleID=71316
The Pens finally began to place pressure on the Wings defense and it leads to the their first goal after a poor pass from Wings’ defenseman Stuart. Unfortunately the linked video does not replay the goal a few times like the other links because it would show Crosby’s shot hit Osgood’s glove and bounced between his legs into the net. Osgood is positioned well for but the puck hits his catch glove and drops into the net. This time of the year pucks have to be caught. But, considering it was the first goal allowed by Osgood in the first 137 minutes of the series, we’ll cut him a little slack.
Goal Two – http://www.versus.com/nhl?articleID=71318
Osgood gets caught by a bouncing puck while trying to kill a pk. He originally dropped to the knees to make a save but the puck was blocked andbouncing around the slot. Osgood choose to stay down, which was probably the right call. But, the puck bounced loose and Hossa, who was just above the top of the crease and open, put it on net. Save was made andCrosby (also untouched) was there on the side of the net for the rebound. Because Hossawas in tight, there was no chance for Osgood to control the initial shot nor Crosby’s rebound. This was a case of too many great offensive players around the net on a pp opportunity and inexperienced defenders trying to help the goalie.
Goal Three – http://www.versus.com/nhl?articleID=71323
This goal, the game winner, found Osgood in no-man’s land and he paid for it. The first save attempt (shot hit side of the net) was too aggressive andOsgood slid outside of the net. He should have directed his skate to the post to seal it off. But… he got a break when the puck hit the outside of the net. Next, he continued his aggressive technique in trying to poke check the puck away from Hall but missed. Unfortunately the poke check attempt caused him to lunge behind the goal line anda few feet to the outside of the post. The shooter, Hall, made the only play he could from behind the net and banked it off Osgood’s skates as he desperately tried to get back in the net. Love the aggressive nature of his save attempts (I feel too many goalies are not aggressive enough today) but it cost him on this play.
34 shots, 32 saves.
Game 3 was the first time MA has looked comfortable in the series and was named the 2nd Star of the Game. Maybe it is being back in Mellon arena in front of the Pens fans? Fleury has not lost in Pittsburgh throughout the playoffs and the last six games of the regular season (tv announcers were saying since before Thanksgiving – never mentioning he was out with the high ankle sprain for from early December until the last day of February). Whatever it was, he played a great game by making many of the saves look easy and did a fantastic job controlling rebounds.
Some of the saves-
Fantastic move off the post – http://www.nhl.tv/team/console.jsp?hlg=20072008,3,413&event=PIT79
Great toe saves – http://www.nhl.tv/team/console.jsp?hlg=20072008,3,413&event=PIT796
Great ability to keep control of the puck (under leg pad) – http://www.nhl.tv/team/console.jsp?hlg=20072008,3,413&event=PIT863
Great tacking ability after deflection before shot – http://www.nhl.tv/team/console.jsp?hlg=20072008,3,413&event=PIT878
PK save in last moments – http://www.nhl.tv/team/console.jsp?hlg=20072008,3,413&event=PIT1032
Like Ozzie, posts are Fleury’s best friend – http://www.nhl.tv/team/console.jsp?hlg=20072008,3,413&event=PIT1005
Goal One – http://www.versus.com/nhl?articleID=71319
Franzen (The Mule) makes an amazing play as he approaches Fleuryby going to his forehand as he enters the top of the crease androofs the puck behind Fleury. Amazing hands from Franzen. Fleury played it well and was positioned correctly for Franzen’s approach. It was just a great goal from the newest Wings star player.
One note, although Fleury was positionally sound, the Pens defenseman Scuderi did a poor job positionally that led to the scoring play. As Franzen approached Scuderi was much too far over towards to boards and got beat to the inside lane. If he played on the “inside” (defenseman’s outside shoulder lined up on forwards inside shoulder) of Franzen, chances are the puck would never had made it to the net.
As a goalie, you should always be talking to your defense (no idea if Fleury was) especially when they are out-of-position. The goalie should be yelling “INSIDE”, for example, which tells the D he is over-committed to the attacking player’s outside shoulder therefore giving-up the inside lane.
Goal Two – http://www.versus.com/nhl?articleID=71332
This was a weak goal that could have been a disaster for the Penguins because it brought the Wings within a goal with six minutes left in the game. Although the announcer guesses it was deflected off Oprik’s stick, it does not matter. The shot should have been saved. Fleury’s depth was correct but a drop to the knees, typical of butterfly goalies, allowed the puck to enter the net over the shoulder. Unacceptable.
Fleury has allowed a weak goal every game of this series and will cost the Pens the series if he allows them to continue. On the same note, it was the second time Fluery has been beat in the series from a long shot from the boards to his left.
But, it looks like they found a way… (https://elitegoaltending.wordpress.com/2008/05/28/well-find-a-way/)
Again, it was a great game featuring a great goalie duel. It appears Pittsburgh has finally woke-up and the series should get even better. The teams have two days of rest before Saturday night’s Game 4. Can’t wait.