We wish we could say these two pics are all you got to know about this game. But so much shit happened in this game, as is the norm when hockey is played in Montreal. The funny part is the Montreal media giving Letang the first star of the game. Probably the most unstable city in North America. The Pens are usually on the short end of calls in Montreal. And that still held true last night: a couple of no-goals, two missed headshots on Kris Letang, Subban allowed to kick players on the ice.
But what a win. Habs fans are probably gonna force Canadian Parliament to talk about the OT goal at their next big meeting. Calls like that are what fans deserve when they boo obvious penalty calls against the home team. These fans are supposed to be knowledgeable, but they really don't seem to know the game that well. Pens not going back to Montreal until February 7th.
Recap city on this glorious Sunday...
Huge surprise. Opening faceoff was delayed on HNIC. Set the tone for the night. That and the Carlton Banks look-alike singing the anthems. Crosby and Malkin started off the game for Bylsma. 21 seconds in, after Crosby drew a penalty, Geno put home a goal during the delayed call. That only stood up for less than 90 seconds. Travis Moen came down and scores the same goal he scored in Game 7 in 2010.
PK Subban's shit officially got under way when he went out of his way to skate into Crosby's path well after a whistle. It makes no sense. After a Pens PP, Pacioretty scored some goal. It looked like the Pens gave up on the play. Bob Errey went back and saw a Pens dump attempt hit the linesman and caught the Pens flat-footed.
Later in the period, Tits elbows Letang in the head in the neutral zone. Almost forgot about this, considering what happened in the third period. Letang stayed on the ice for that shift and ended up destroying some guy behind MAF. Neal tapped Subban, and Subban gave it the ol' Louganis treatment. It's really sad. MAF came through with some saves to kill that penalty.
Other shit that happened:
- Mike Cammalleri took a penalty. Only real proof he actually played.
- The crowd drew the James Neal penalty.
- Carey Price may have gotten the third star, but MAF is the one who stole the show in the first. With the Pens down 2-1, he kept it there.
The first of two Kunitz no-goals came early in the second. It was called a goal on the ice, but it was waived off after Toronto said Kunitz punched the puck into the net. Sorry, no way there was conclusive evidence to flip that. The game was the wild west after that.
Dupuis had a breakaway later, and Subban punished him into the boards well after the play. So confusing.
Then came a vintage Root Sports moment. Kris Letang skated through the neutral zone and fired a shot at Carey Price. The shot splintered Carey Price's stick. The Habs carry it back up ice as Bob Errey is explaining what happened to Price's stick. The Habs ended up with a 2-on-1, and just as they are about to take a shot, the Root Sports producer cuts to a shot of Carey Price's stick. Why? That was so embarrassing. Jesus.
It wouldn't be the last time Letang broke Price's stick.
Halfway through the second, Erik Cole put one home. That's what happens when Bob Errey is talking you up all game. Pens had a PP after that, and it's just fun to watch that PP work since Crosby came back. Pretty sure they sustained 2 minutes of pressure in the Habs zone during that PP. Killed.
Late in the second, the Pens needed something going into the break. Dupuis answers the bell. Probably the best production:salary player in the NHL right now. The Habs tried to get it back right away, but MAF made a huge glove save.
After that Subban tackled a Pen in front of the net after a whistle. Immediately after that, Orpik did that same thing basically. Orpik goes to the box for that while Subban skates free. Horse shit.
Habs fans went into the intermission crying their eyes out after they didn't get a call when Subban basically fell after getting pushed by Letang. Soupcan's reputation for theatrics should've bought him a diving penalty there. But God forbid you call a penalty against the Habs at home.
Props to Vitale for nailing Soupcan somewhere in there.
Other shit that happened:
- Subban just missed killing Letang and started shit talking him after the play.
- Malkin had a big-time chance at one point and Price said no. When Crosby and Malkin are on the ice, it is a whole different world.
- Check out the woman in the middle:
Big-time assist by Martin on the Dupes goal.
Three minutes into the third, Dupes drives the net and holds a Habs stick. Good call. He goes to the box. Crosby gets a look on the PK unit. After an innocent-looking clear, the puck bounced to Koonie's stick. Breakaway. Price saves it initially, and Kunitz tries to will it into the net. No-goal on the ice. Wasn't gonna get overturned. Pens kill off that Dupuis penalty.
That is like Kunitz's 30th disallowed goal of the season.
Crosby and Neal were on the ice together for a while. Great setup by Sid to Neal. Price makes a glove save, and the game is almost delayed so Habs fans could cheer the save. Wouldn't put it past Jacques Martin calling a time-out there just to appease the fragile psyche of his goaltender.
Seven minutes into the period, the Pens and Habs exchanged short power plays. Subban dangerously kicked James Neal somewhere in there. Just a really scary play. Intent to injure.
Fast-forward to a little past the halfway mark, and Niskanen makes his first mistake in a month on a bizarre turnover. Habs couldn't do anything with it. Martin should've boarded Cole.
The Pens started swarming late. Crosby and Malkin team up but couldn't get anything going. Malkin drags the puck around and hits Staal coming off the bench as Sid's replacement.
BIG FUCKING GOAL ALERT
Staal gets the puck from Malkin, and every Penguins fan watching the play stood up.
Staal goes in and buries that breakaway.
Interesting that Crosby didn't get an assist on that. Pretty sure he knocked that puck back to Malkin's stick and headed to the bench. Zero extended replays of that goal on the Internet right now.
Then, basically on the next shift, Kris Letang glides into the Habs' zone and sets up for a shot. Pacioretty zeroes in on him from halfway across the ice and delivers a vicious elbow into Letang's face, breaking his nose. NO PENALTY. Letang gets helped off the ice, blood everywhere.
The game slipped to OT.
Letang went into the locker room after the Patches elbow to get looked at for possibly concussion symptoms. He probably just told the staff his nose was broken and wanted to go back out and score some goal. Letang reappears on the ice in OT with a blood-stained jersey. He leads a rush and dishes it to Neal. Neal does some unreal move and gets a decent shot off. For whatever reason, the ref didn't blow the whistle. From the TV angles, any viewer could still see the puck, but it's still a mystery how the referee could still see it from his vantage point. Who cares. Letang digs it out and puts it home.
We'll steal this from our boys at Days of Y'Orr:
-MAF's save on Erik Cole on his doorstep late in the first period. Would've made it 3-1 Habs going into the intermission.
-Byslma keeping his cool the entire game. A lesser coach would have thrown a bench onto the ice.