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Insider Only More Game 3 Fallout: Stifling ‘D’, The Sheary Factor, Driving Possession

Game 3 Fallout

How stifling were the Penguins defensively in the third period?

Here was where the Rangers shots in the period came from, via the New York Post.

2:53, Derek Stepan, 32 feet

4:10, Dan Boyle, 64 feet

12:31, Kevin Klein, 25 feet

12:46, Keith Yandle, 46 feet

Not one shot inside 25 feet.

“I thought our team did a better job off the start of controlling territory,” Mike Sullivan said. “I thought our breakouts were better. We tried to simplify the process a little bit. And I thought we spent more time in the offensive zone, which maybe limits their opportunity to get pucks to the net.”

Comments from Derek Stepan says it all about the critical area the Penguins’ dominated.

“The reason we didn’t get a single look the whole third period is that we did a terrible job coming though the neutral zone,” Stepan said via the NY Post. “It’s to the red and deep. But we didn’t do that.”

Tidbits

Conor Sheary was a factor from the drop of the puck and the coaching staff could see it in bumping him up to Sidney Crosby’s top line.

Sheary played 14:41 and nearly 10 minutes at even strength with Crosby.

From making plays in the D-zone

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To pressuring the Rangers and winning foot races, he was one of the Penguins’ best players on the ice.

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Sheary was on the ice for 18 shot attempts, 10 against at even strength.

A similar player in stature, Brian Gibbons emerged as a short-term fit on Crosby’s wing during the 2013-2014 season. Like Gibbons, Sheary as a top-line winger isn’t likely to be sustainable but he’s showing he can give a quick jolt for a game or so when given extended minutes.

While Sheary saw his most minutes with Crosby at even strength, the Sheary – Malkin – Fehr line also drove possession in limited minutes. When all three were on the ice together, the Penguins had 10 shot attempts and just 3 against in under 4 minutes of ice time.

Malkin, Fehr were possession monsters

Eric Fehr led all Penguin forwards with a shot attempts for percentage of 75% (15/5), Malkin was at 68% (17/8), via war-on-ice. When Fehr and Malkin were on the ice together, the Penguins controlled 74% of their shot attempts.

— In the third period with the Penguins defending a lead following Matt Cullen’s goal at 4:16 of the period, it was interesting to see the Evgeni Malkin line turn into the fourth line.

Malkin and Fehr saw just five Want the Full Story? Get "Inside Access"

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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