Right here, on this site, while the rest of the hockey experts were picking the Pittsburgh Penguins to win the Stanley Cup, you read my prediction that the Flyers would eliminate the Pens in six games. And today they just did that.
So Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin trade in their hockey sticks for golf clubs. Maybe the two best hockey players in the world will have better luck in a new sport. The Philadelphia Flyers took Game 6 by a score of 5-1 to win the Stanley Cup playoff series with the Pens.
You knew it was going to be the Flyers’ day at the start of the game when the officials let Claude Giroux check Sidney Crosby without drawing a penalty. And then when Giroux scored just 32 seconds into the game, the Flyers were off and running.
Scott Hartnell scored later in the first period to give the Flyers the 2-0 lead. The big goal of the game, and maybe the series, came from an unlikely source, backup defenseman Erik Gustafsson, who gave the Flyers a 3-0 lead.
The Pens finally scored in the middle of the second period with a Malkin goal on the power play. Sean Couturier, trying to score a short-handed goal, fell down behind the Penguin’s goal, giving the Pens a 5-3 rush. But then Danny Briere of the Flyers scored 30 seconds later, restoring the Flyers’ three goal lead.
This game was really won by the Flyers team defense. They got into passing lanes, blocked 40 shots, and smothered Crosby and Malkin with love all over the ice. And just for good measure, they killed off a 6-4 power play when the Pens pulled the goalie late in the game. Goalie Ilya Bryzgalov didn’t really have a lot to do.
With a little bit of luck the Flyers might get the home-ice advantage in the second round, because the top two seeds in the East, the Rangers and Bruins, are both trailing in their series.
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