Last night, the Detroit Wings beat the Pittsburgh Penguins in convincing fashion, 4-0, at home. They are now three wins away from the Stanley Cup. Now let's not get ahead of ourselves, there is still plenty of hockey to be played. I know that the Wings really picked up and capitalized on the Penguins mistakes. I know Pittsburgh has the talent to perform better and it's only game. There is plenty of time to turn things around so I would most certainly not write off the Pens by any stretch of the imagination.
Some interesting takes from the game (and if you want a look from the other side, be sure to visit Pensburgh):
1) Sidney Crosby had just three shots in the game. Evgeni Malkin? Just one.
2) Detroit won 53% of the face offs. Kris Draper won 68% of his 19 face offs. Valtteri Filppula won 75% of his 8 face offs. Jordan Staal? 38%. Crosby? 48%. Malkin? 40%.
3) For being the bigger team in terms of size, the Penguins were outhit by Detroit, 31-25.
4) Detroit's secondary scoring got two goals from Mikael Samuelsson and a goal from Dan Cleary. Neither of which had scored in the Western Conference Finals so it was great to see some goals from new sources.
5) Chris Osgood was the reason why the Wings weren't down at least a goal in the first period. After playing undisciplined and going on almost four consecutive penalty kills, Osgood had to make some huge saves. And he did. The crowd kept chanting "Ozzie, Ozzie" during the first and it was certainly earned praise by the netminder. I find it hard to imagine the Joe Louis crowd chanting like that had Dominik Hasek been the goalie in net making those saves. But maybe that's just me.
6) The Pens had their fans in full force last night. I didn't interact with any of them, but I only heard them cheering "Lets Go Pens" and while I don't like seeing a lot of visiting team fans in our arena, it's not so bad when they are just cheering for their team (instead of trying to insult the opponents). I also saw way too many Crosby jerseys last night. I got excited when I saw a fan with a Gonchar jersey and that's just because it was something different.
Tomorrow night's game will be a great battle. If Pittsburgh can split the games at the Joe, it'll be considered a big success for them as they head home. If Detroit can head to Pittsburgh up 2-0 in the series and with the chance of Johan Franzen to return to the line-up, it's going to be tough for the Penguins to climb back into this series.
If you are interested in seeing how the two teams measured up statistically before the Stanley Cup Finals, please check out Stros Fan's fanpost here.