When it comes to the Penguins’ superstars, Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, everyone is still waiting for them to show up this series. On the opposite bench, Capitals’ captain and alternate captain, Alex Ovechkin and T.J. Oshie have shown up and shown up in spades. Both have 5 points in the series compared to Crosby and Malkin’s 2 points each. There has never been a team that has won the Stanley Cup that I know of, who’s star players become invisible. Last game Malkin was somewhat noticeable, but he has yet to elevate the game of his linemates. As for Crosby, it’s being said that he’s being checked tightly and doesn’t get a lot of room. If that’s the case, then once again the problem lies within those in suits on the bench. If the Penguins coaching staff cannot get favorable match ups when they were on home ice, then something is wrong. But if every line of the Capitals’ squad can easily contain 87 then the problem falls upon the Penguins captain. It’s been claimed that Sidney Crosby is the best player in the world, not only by Pens fans but other NHL analysts and players as well. That title is not deserved if 87 can’t find a way to battle through whatever matchup is thrown at him and produce. The top players in this league always find a way.
Overall the Penguins outshot the Capitals and lost. Something the Capitals did earlier against the Pens. That’s not a typical scenario in any series. But when 1 and 2 seeds play each other in round two, I suppose it’s not a typical series. For the Penguins to win and close out this series tomorrow, they will need to stay disciplined and get in Holtby’s kitchen. The Pens did pepper the Caps goaltender last game. But those shots mostly came from the outside or in easily visible lanes. This allowed Holtby to not give up a lot of second chances. When he did, the Penguins were not there to capitalize on them. Most of the Pens goals in this series have come from dirty areas. For some reason, the Black and Gold got away from that in game 5. Look for the team as a whole, from players, to coaches, to training and equipment staff all to be on their “A” game in game six. Why? Because under Mike Sullivan the Penguins have become a resilient and bounce back kind of team.
Good talk...See ya out there!
Feel free to talk hockey anytime with me on twitter @coachhagmaier2
Good talk…see ya out there!