My Prediction

Broons 4, Pens 1. Record in predicting winner: 19-10.

Even Strength Offense: D

The Pens really didn’t have much going offensively all day. They were never able to sustain a forecheck and registered one of their lowest shot attempt totals of the year. But they did manage the key goal by Cooke at even strength that gave them some breathing room.

Even Strength Defense: C

They gave up way too many quality chances.

Power Play: A

In a game like this, that was played very close to the vest, special teams are key. And since the game was 1-1 at even strength, you can say the Pens’ power play won them the game. They made a great entry play off the faceoff, and eventually Geno knocked how a rebound as the first period was drawing to a close. That’s how you score power play goals, put the puck on the net and go for rebounds and deflections.

Penalty Kill: A

They kept the Broons at bay.

Goaltending: A

Chalk this one up to Marc. He was simply brilliant all game long. He never even saw the one that got past him, and made several absolutely brilliant saves along the way. The Broons actually outplayed the Pens much of the game, as Fleury’s workload was much tougher than the Tool’s. But Fleury was always there, flashing out those legs to make a save.

Overall: B

Maybe this should be higher, as they did beat the defending champs in their building. But I honestly thought the Pens could have played much better. They put way too much on Fleury’s shoulders. They seemed content to let the Broons come at them in the third period, and that’s playing with fire. But thanks to Flower, they got away with it.

And now, the rest of the story…

Geno: B

Still not at his pre-break level.

James Neal: F

Totally invisible again.

Kris Letang: C

Didn’t really notice him one way or the other.

The 4M Pair: F

On the ice for the only goal against, with Michalek providing a beautiful screen on the Corvo shot.

Brooks orpik: A

He was a hitting machine.

Cal O’Reilly: D

Looked like the reincarnation of one of his predecessors in that number—Kris Beech. In other owrds it was like an empty jersey skating around out there. But it was his first game, and he did have one scoring chance, so there’s at least a little hope.

Bibsy’s Creative Language

“It’s a bird. It’s a plane. No, it’s Daniel Paille.”

Jack Edwards’ Creative Language

“Oh, Orpik just sent Paille flying through the air like a teddy bear in a kid’s room.”

Loathsome Homerism

“Orpik sent Paille flying 25 feet in the air.” Yeah, whatever Steigy.

EFGT

Fleury’s save in the last minute when Orpik inexplicably left the puck right in front for a Broon.

Free Candy

Gee, I can’t imagine what it might be.

I’m on Twitter.

A guide to the game grades can be found here.