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Insider Only Effort problem more than a personnel problem, Penguins were chasing the play all night vs Flyers


3:29 PIT Sidney Crosby (26)
ASSISTS: Patric Hornqvist (23), Ian Cole (8), 1-0 PIT
17:14 PHI Vincent Lecavalier (8)
Assists: Pierre-Edouard Bellemare (6), 1-1 Tie
12:43 PHI Brayden Schenn (15)
ASSISTS: Brandon Manning (2), Sean Couturier (18), 2-1 PHI
0:49 PHI PPG Brayden Schenn (16)
ASSISTS: Jakub Voracek (56), Mark Streit (37), 3-1 PHI
5:34 PHI Carlo Colaiacovo (1), 4-1 PHI

PHI Steve Mason (16-17-11,.928 SV%, 2.22 GAA) 24 Saves on 25 Shots
PIT Marc Andre Fleury (33-18-8, .921 SV%, 2.29 GAA) 27 saves on 31 shots

Effort problem more than a personnel problem tonight for the Pittsburgh Penguins? That’s the way Mike Johnston and Sidney Crosby felt afterwards who were very critical of the Penguins effort, Johnston more so towards the forwards.
Other then when Crosby was on the ice, the Penguins were rarely a threat to score until garbage time and the Penguins showed little battle level in the offensive zone when it came to wall battles and getting to the blue paint, minus Patric Hornqvist and Daniel Winnik who were effective along with Crosby on the top line.
“I thought for the last part of the game we were outworked in some of those battle areas and that’s concerning for sure,” head coach Mike Johnston said. “I thought it was our forwards” (who got outworked).
Several players blamed penalties and a lack of effort for the Penguins “awful” performance.
“Tonight was not a very good effort, winger Chris Kunitz said.
Crosby was furious after the loss.
“They’re missing some guys — Cause we’re under staffed doesn’t mean we can take five penalties,” Crosby said. “We were bad.”
The Penguins jumped out to a 1-0 lead on Crosby’s 300th of his career early in the first but the Flyers dominated play throughout.
“We didn’t give ourselves a chance,” Crosby said. “Don’t think they did anything we didn’t expect. We were bad from start to finish.
“There’s no excuse for that. That was awful.”
The Penguins penalty kill was excellent through the first two periods until the Flyers broke through on the their fifth power play that carried over into the third period.
The Penguins were extremely aggressive and effective in pressuring the Flyers to the outside and without Wayne Simmonds, Pittsburgh didn’t fear the pass to the blue paint that Simmonds is so dangerous at, despite Philadelphia operating the setup without him on the man-advantage. However, Philadelphia adjusted going into the second intermission and finally broke through as Brayden Schenn scored his second of the time 49 seconds into the third period to push the Flyers lead to 3-1.
While the Penguins were 4-5 on the PK, the Penguins lack of discipline and too many stick penalties, halted any chance to develop momentum. The game had a feeling all night where the Flyers were bound to break the game wide open and they did with two quick third period goals. It was lights out for the Penguins.
The Flyers improved to 13-2-1 all-time at Consol.

Mike Johnston said for now Evgeni Malkin is out for a 2-4 day range. The staff found a “slight injury” when Malkin was being evaluated on Tuesday. Take that estimation for what it’s worth.
“When they were working on him other day, found a slight injury they want to be cautious about,” Johnston said.
“Just being cautious at this time in the year. Maybe two, three…four day range.”

About The Author

William DePaoli

TIOPS Insider

William DePaoli is the President/Founder of Inside Pittsburgh Sports LLC and can be reached at

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