I'm back again Pens fans and I'm looking forward to disecting the Pens-Capitals matchup. The Pens have history on their side as the Caps have never beat the Pens in a playoff series. Also, the Caps haven't been in the second round of the playoffs since 1999.
I understand that I can be one-sided when it comes the the Pens, and I'm trying to work on that (for the most part I think I have gotten better). What really ticks me off is the fact that the whole Crosby-Ovie series is just those two being showcased at will by the press. WHAT ABOUT MALKIN?
Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't he lead the whole NHL in points in the playoffs entering the conference semis? Also didn't he just win the scoring title? Whatever the case may be, it is still a "Sid the Kid" against "Alex the Great" matchup.
As I was watching the game on Saturday I was thinking of a couple of things:
1. Ovechkin will take every shot possible and eventually make a lucky pass and get an assist (Just for the record, I respect everything he has done, but after his interview on E:60, I just lost control).
2. Crosby and Malkin will make the extra pass MOST of the time.
3. Varlamov will choke when it matters most.
Well, since I just threw out all of those semi-guarantees, I have to back them up, right? Going into round two, Ovechkin had 49 shots by himself. Sid and Geno had a total of 44!!!!!! Nobody on this earth can tell me that that isn't a shocking statistic. That just goes to show you that he is a self-centered pig.
Crosby and Malkin make the extra effort to give their players a shot at glory to score a goal. There is only one problem with that: It works only about 20% of the time (That is being generous, it actually is about 10%). I don't mean to be critical (well I guess I do), but Sid and Geno need to be shooting the puck at least six times a game.
As for the third reason, history doesn't show well for rookie goalies. Now don't give me the Ken Dryden bit, because he is an exception. Ok fine, Cam Ward too.
Two years ago, Fleury just blew up against the Senators. Another one, Steve Mason. Look what happened to him. Most, and I emphasize most, rookies don't do well in the playoffs. In my opinion, Varlamov is going to implode and surprise everybody. That save on Crosby was total luck, and Sid helped him a lot on that save as well.
The Capitals are up one to nothing as of now. It would help out a lot if we got rid of the dump and chase method. I've been saying it all year and look at us now: we lost a game we should have won in my opinion.
My prediction, Pens win in six. All we have to do is take game two and win at least one, if not both games at home. One last thing, the wingers need to get it done and we've got to shut Ovechkin down.
Let's kick this series up a notch Pittsburgh!