Pens Shut Down Jagr, Lose

My Prediction

Flyers 5, Pens 1. Record in predicting winner: 6-2

Even Strength Offense: D

They really didn’t generate many good scoring chances, especially in the first two periods. They came on a bit in the third period, but it was again too little, too late. They managed one even strength goal on a nice pass from orpik (why WAS he where he was?) to Malkin. But it was the last score of the night and they just couldn’t dig out of their second straight 3-0 deficit.

Even Strength Defense: F

That third Flyer goal was the perfect example of every player on the ice screwing up with the end result being a puck behind Fleury. First, Geno gives it away in the offensive zone. As that well-known great skater Andrej Meszaros approaches the blue line, Orpik completely whiffs on an attempted check, allowing easy zone entry.. Martin inexplicably leaves his position and charges over to Meszaros, leaving Fartsmell wide open at the back door. Both Neal and Sullivan are back, but both lazily skate away from Fartsmell, leaving him wide open for the slam dunk. No wonder HCDB looked so angry on the bench after that one. And we won’t even talk about both Orpik and Bortuzzo deflecting a shot past Fleury. Or the numerous times the defense just hung Fleury out to dry. It was just a pathetic performance.

Power Play: F

Another night, another minute plus of 5-on-3 frittered away. No, Jack Adams, we don’t need a power play coach, do we? We have the coach of the year, who knows all about designing a great power play. Last night, it got even worse. On the 5-on-3, the Flyers actually had the best scoring chance when they got a quick 2-on-1. A goal there would have been comical to say the least. I think in the future, I will just adhere to what Dejan said this morning: “But five-on-threes don’t need to be analyzed. They need to be goals.”

They did manage a power play goal by Neal once the game was out of hand, so that’s at least something.

Penalty Kill: F

Another road game, another power play goal allowed. And a laughable one at that. They looked like a bunch of peewees in allowing a cross-crease pass. They all chased toward Voracek, leaving Simmonds wide open on the doorstep.

Goaltending: A

Fleury stopped every shot he had even the remotest chance of stopping. ‘Nuf said.

Overall: D-

Yes, the Pens are banged up right now. But that’s no excuse for the sloppy play that allowed all three goals last night. They just got dominated until it was 3-0 and they decided maybe they should break a sweat. And the measuring stick says:

And now, the rest of the story…

Geno: B

The first half of the game, he was Alex Kovalev, trying to beat every guy twice. Then he played hockey the second half of the game and notched a goal and an assist.

Jordan Staal: MIA again

After the quick start, he has reverted to the Jordan Staal we know. No points in the last five games, and only two in the last nine.

Chris Kunitz: F

Continues to be worthless, and with Sid injured, he had nobody to hit. Oh, and he canceled out the 5-on-3 where only one Flyer had a stick by taking a stupid cross-checking penalty.

Brooks Orpik: D

Deflected one past Fleury, got undressed by Meszaros, but sort of made up for it with the pass to Geno for the goal.

Tyler Kennedy: F

Way to earn the big contract, TK. One measly assist in the last six games.

Robert Bortuzzo: F

This was the night he showed he is not NHL-ready. He was just overwhelmed.

Pens’ Lines: F

The only line that is any threat at all to score is the Malkin line. The rest of them just suck right now.

Elves: A

Santa’s elves make us presents. Keebler’s elves make great cookies.

The Philadelphia Elves: F

Danny Briere is the ultimate elf. he is just a whining diving piece of crap. And his roommate is Claude Giroux, who shall henceforth be known as the pixie.

NHL Network: F

It is just unbelievable that they would subject the entire country to the Flyers’ announcers. I saw someone on Puck daddy call Paul Steigerwald a “loathesome homer” the other day. Well, let me tell you, if there is a harsher adjective than “loathesome,” that describes Keith Jones, Al Coates, and whoever the whiny play by play guy is. And Steigy is downright down the middle compared to these ultimate homers. A couple examples. On the Fartsmell penalty where he kicked the skated out from under a Penguin, Jones said the Pens got himself in a bad position and “that’s a penalty, I guess.” The, seconds later, Giroux can-openered Vitale and they claimed it should be a penalty because it was Vitale who grabbed Giroux’ stick/ “I don’t think there’s any doubt Vitale brought the stick in and fell.” No word on how the stick got between Vitale’s legs.

Comedy Central: A

It describes both the Pens’ defense last night and the play where Kennedy and Niskanen nailed each other.

Striped Buffoonery

They once again gave the Pens a 5-on-3.

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A guide to the game grades can be found here.