Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Penguins Game 57 Recap - Ducks 2, Penguins 1

Tough loss for the Penguins tonight. They dominated the first period and felt flat on their faces during the second and third period and got beat by a non-playoff team in the Ducks 2-1.

Certainly this loss doesn't mean anything in the grand scheme of the season but when you dominate the game at the onset like the Penguins did and let it slip through your fingers then it hurts a little bit more. This one wouldn't sting as much if it wasn't coached by Bruce Boudreau who is still near perfect against Dan Bylsma and hasn't coached against Disco where his team has lost in regulation.

Jordan Staal is really underrated for all he has done and this season has shown that he just isn't a great two way hockey player. He seems to have found more of a scoring touch this year and found the back of the net for his 17th of the season. It was a great goal where he beat Hiller high to the blocker side on a two-on-one where he forced the defenseman to go to the ground and give him a clear shooting lane.

In the second and the third the Ducks really clamped down on the Penguins and didn't give them anything. As many on twitter are saying the Ducks are doing what more teams are starting to do and that is stacking the slot and the paint with a lot of bodies to block shots and force the Penguins on the perimeter. It worked against them tonight and besides the Staal goal and a hit pipe by Evgeni Malkin there wasn't too many chances.

Teemu Selanne scored the game winner just about eight minutes into the third and it probably shouldn't have counted but it was a sick move. The Penguins were dominating play, holding the puck in the zone for nearly a minute before the Ducks got he puck on a turnover high in the Penguins offensive zone and got a modified two-on-one where Selanne used some slick hands to beat Marc Andre Fleury short side. The problem was that Selanne was clearly offsides but that doesn't take away from slick move from Selanne. It is what it is though.

The Penguins are going to have to tighten up the offense because they have some big games coming up this weekend. On Friday they travel to Philadelphia and then to Buffalo on Sunday before playing at home against the Rangers on Tuesday. Two points would have been nice tonight but it didn't happen and they will have to get some wins against some of the best in the East coming up.

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