Recap: Penguins 8, Capitals 7

Don’t worry, I’ll save you some time in case you felt that you read that wrong: the Penguins beat the Capitals 8-7 in OT. 8-7!!

This game had the feeling of a playoff game throughout.  The crowd was playoff loud.  The players were into it.  Oh yeah, and let’s not forget the scoring…

15 goals were scored in this game.  9 were scored in the 2nd period alone, the most ever in Penguins franchise history, which includes the years where guys like Mario and Jagr were around and goals were often scored in bunches.  All but 4 Capitals (Wilson, Beagle, Alzner, and Orpik) had at least a point.  Oshie led the way with 3 (1G-2A).  The Penguins had 2 players register 4 points: Crosby (1G-3A) and Schultz (0G-4A).  They also had 2 players with 3 points: Sheary (2G-1A) and Malkin (3G-0A).

This surely was not a game that the goalies liked, but what a game it was to watch for the fans.  Here is a brief rundown of the goal summary.  Yes, all 15 of them:

0-1 Caps goal: Daniel Winnik forced a turnover behind the net and fed it in front to Burakovsky flying towards the goal, and he directed it past Murray.

0-2 Caps goal: Similar to the first goal, Oshie forces a turnover behind the net and passed the puck in front to Backstrom, who made a great shot, going high glove on Murray before he could react.

0-3 Caps goal: Williams came in on a 1-on-1 with Ian Cole, froze Cole with a fake shot, and just held the puck on his forehand until he eventually rifled one high glove on Murray.  This is one Murray should have stopped.

1-3 Pens goal: Shortly after Hornqvist got into a scrap with a Washington player, the Penguins had a tremendous 4 on 4 shift that resulted in a goal.  After Kessel fanned on an open net, the Caps failed to get the puck out on a clearing attempt.  Daley found Malkin, who one-timed one past Holtby to get the Pens on the board.

2-3 Pens goal: While in the same 4 on 4 situation, the Penguins decided that 1 wasn’t enough.  Crosby got a pass from Daley and then slapped a pass to Sheary who simply had to redirect it past Holtby.  Sheary continues to take a page from Crosby’s book.

3-3 Pens goal: Just over a minute later, Bonino would tie the game.  Schultz took a shot from the point that got tangled up in Bonino’s equipment for just a second.  As the puck fell to Bonino’s stick, Holtby was frozen with no knowledge of where the puck was, and Bonino knocked it home.

4-3 Pens goal: Rust also took a page from the Crosby book, scoring from behind the net.  There was a scrum in front on the net, but Rust got the puck and took it behind the net and backhanded one in front, which went off of the skate of Ovechkin and in.

5-3 Pens goal: Guentzel, back up with the Pens, threw one in front that trickled to the netminder Holtby.  As Holtby reached the put his glove on the puck, Malkin flew in and got a stick on it, redirecting the puck high over the glove hand of Holtby.  He would be pulled as a result of the goal.

5-4 Caps goal: The Caps were not done.  Chorney slap passed one to Connolly who was parked in front of the cage, and Connolly one-timed the pass past Murray to cut the deficit to 1.

5-5 Caps goal: Tied up again.  The Pens had a powerplay with a chance to go up 2, but rather gave up a shorthanded goal to Eller.  He had an easy slam dunk goal as Schmitt fed a pass to Eller in the slot and he beat Murray easily, as Murray was committed to Schmitt.

6-5 Pens goal: The Pens would get the lead back on that same powerplay, and Malkin would cap off the hat trick (no pun intended) on a scrum in front of the net.  The Caps challenged the goal to see if there was goaltender interference but there was not.

7-5 Pens goal: It was only a matter of time before Sid scored again.  Rust forced a turnover, Sheary took the puck, and fired a pass cross-crease to Sid, who redirected the puck past Grubauer.

7-6 Caps goal: The Caps just wouldn’t go away.  TJ Oshie would capitalize on the powerplay on a weird sequence, as he found the puck after a Penguin blocked on Ovechkin one-timer and chopped at it on his backhand and it would flutter in.

7-7 Caps goal: Eller tied the game once, and he decided to tie it again, burying a rebound off of an Orlov slap shot from the point.

8-7 Pens goal: Under a minute into OT, Sheary came in with Sid in a 2 on 1.  Sheary took a shot that was stuck between the legs of Grubauer, but Sheary never gave up on the play, poking at the puck one last time before it just trickled over the line to give the Penguins a crazy win.

Impressions:

  • Geno hatty: Malkin had a huge game, getting the Pens on the board and registered a hat trick.
  • Sid back on the board: Crosby finally found the back of the net after a 5 game goal drought.  He also tacked on 3 assists.
  • Goalie struggles: Murray was hung out to dry at times, but he looked like swiss cheese tonight, hate to say.  Over his last 4 starts, Murray has allowed 19 goals and owns a poor .829 save percentage.  In addition, the Pens have now given up 22 goals in their last 4 games as a team.  Not exactly a winning formula.
  • Resilient: Despite playing a game that one may not call pretty, the Pens proved to be resilient, coming back from a 3-0 deficit to a team that hadn’t allowed a goal since last time they faced Pittsburgh a week ago.

The next game for the Pens will be at the Bell Center to take on the Canadiens on Wednesday at 7:30 pm ET.  Expect Fleury to start after a rough outing for Murray, despite escaping with a win.

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