Game 3 Fallout: Post-Game Players, Coaches Reactions to Pens embarrassing 8-4 loss

GAME 3 FALLOUT

The Penguins looked to stir things up early in the game and it did nothing to slow down the Flyers vaunted offensive attack that put up another 8 goals against Pittsburgh, and the Flyers have scored 20 goals through the first three games of the series, averaging 6.67 goals per game.
“If they think they’re gonna win that way, it’s not working for them, ” Flyers defenseman Kimmo Timonen told reporters.
Just minutes into the game, Pittsburgh seemed to lose focus and express frustration, but captain Sidney Crosby didn’t see it that way.
“No, i don’t think we did, ” Crosby said, when asked if the Penguins lost their cool. “I think there were many times in the second we battled back. If anything, think guys are just trying to slow things down a bit and show fight in their game.”

Crosby was in his share of scrums and dropped the gloves with Claude Giroux, featuring a fight between the two best players on the ice. “I thought it was great, ” Flyers head coach Peter Laviolette told reporters. “I loved it and that’s playoff hockey isn’t it? Two of the worlds best players dropping the gloves.”
The Penguins had 89 penalty minutes in the game and had 5 players ejected by the end of things. Arron Asham is likely to receive a one or two game suspension and Craig Adams receives an automatic one game suspension if the league doesn’t rescind the instigator Adams received near the end of the game.
“I don’t think we saw a lot of that in games 1 and 2, ” head coach Dan Bylsma said on the extra curricular activities today. “We obviously saw a lot today. With the way the game was called, their was a lot of extra curricular activities, during and after plays, ” he said. “That’s an area of the game we want to stay away from and don’t want to be involved in those situations against this team. We don’t want to create those scenarios.”
“You can say that we got frustrated, we didn’t, ” Crosby said. “We took some penalties, didn’t kill them and got within one and didn’t get back into the game, ” he said.
“It’s the playoffs, it’s a tough game and guys get heated and things happen, ” center Jordan Staal.
FLEURY’S STRUGGLES
Marc Andre Fleury made 22 saves on 28 shots and was awful in the loss, unable to make a routine save at times and struggled mightily with his rebound control. Fleury is now 0-3 in the playoffs with a 6.34 goals against average and .798 save percentage. “They had some scoring chances and I need to make some key saves and it seems like everytime they had one {scoring chance}, they seemed to bury it, ” Fleury said.
Bylsma said he thought about pulling Fleury before he did going into the third period.
“Yes, thought about doing it but with some of the power play and penalty kills precluded me from doing that, ” Bylsma said. “I think in the first period there were some goals you’d want back, obviously. I think in second period Marc Andre played well, had breakaway goal at end of period and power play goal through seam back door, great play. Thought he did well in the second.”
While Bylsma and Fleury’s teammates continue to come to Fleury’s defense, there’s no denying his play in goal has been an issue and it was again today. However, it shouldn’t even be a story that Bylsma named Fleury his starter in Game 4. There is no other real option than to start him.
“Marc Andre Fleury’s playing in our net Game 4, ” Bylsma said. “The games have not come down to Marc Andre’s goaltending. Mistakes we’ve made to put our team in and I know Marc Andre’s going to be in the net the next four games.”
“ABNORMAL THINGS GOING WRONG”
— While the buzz after the game was about the fight filled game, Pittsburgh’s defensive woes should be front and center again. Bylsma doesn’t have a reason for what he called “the abnormal things” in almost every game.
“I don’t have a good reason for that, ” Bylsma said. “There’s been some abnormal things we’ve seen in almost every game we’ve played. From game 1 to this game, just some strange situations, ” he said. “Today they get shorthanded goal, tough to explain that one and you know we get up with the lead on Jordan Staal’s goal and we find an interesting way to erase it and I don’t think it’s been one thing but we’ve made some mistakes and they’ve cost us in every game.”
The Penguins scored the first goal for the third straight game but the Flyers always had an answer for Pittsburgh. “Tough to keep having that happen to you and {it} takes the wind out of your sails, ” James Neal said.
KUNITZ PENALTY A TURNING POINT
As bad as the Penguins were today, they had momentum late in the second period after clawing back to 5-4 but a Chris Kunitz retaliation penalty put the Penguins back on the penalty kill and the game went away from there.
“My assessment is that there was probably about three or four penalties on the play, on both players, and the referee called the last one on Chris, ” Bylsma said.
NEAL SCORES TWICE, STIRS THE POT LATE IN GAME
James Neal was a big factor in the game offensively with two goals including a great individual goal in the first period when he split the D.
Neal though got things rowdy again late in the game when he nailed Sean Couturier on a hit in the neutral zone when Couturier never had the puck. After that, Neal was a marked man and the refs never diffused the situation.
“I didn’t even mean to hit him, ” Neal said. “Don’t know if the puck was in his feet or not.”
“It was hard to watch, ” Laviolette said about the hit on his young star center.
PLAYERS ON BACKS AGAINST THE WALLS
“Series not over, ” Neal said. “Backs against walls now and we gotta come into Philly and try to win one game.”
“We know what we have to do and we just gotta do it more consistently, ” Sidney Crosby said. “Everyone knows the way we need to play. No one is in here pointing fingers.”
Jordan Staal on what Pens have to do.
“Play our game, ” Staal said. “We’ve seen it all throughout the regular season on what we can do. We just haven’t been playing our game. They’re a good team, playing really well and doing things they need to do to win.”

About The Author

William DePaoli

TIOPS Insider

William DePaoli is the President/Founder of Inside Pittsburgh Sports LLC and can be reached at wdepaoli@insidepittsburghsports.com

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