Kunitz Leads Penguins Past Flyers – Pittsburgh Penguins – PenguinPoop Blog

Kunitz Leads Penguins Past Flyers

Chris Kunitz beat Sergei Bobrovsky for the game-winner during a shootout to pace the Penguins to a 2-1 victory over Philadelphia. The win pulled the surging Pens to within four points of the Flyers in the race for Atlantic Division supremacy. 
In arguably their finest team effort since December, the opportunistic Pens outshot the Flyers, 31-20, and carried the play to their hosts throughout the evening. Given the heated nature of the rivalry, it was a remarkably clean game that featured only five minor penalties. 
Following an opening burst by the home-standing Flyers, the Pens quickly seized control. Given plenty of room to skate, the black and gold employed their up-tempo, puck-possession game to perfection. Bobrovsky, however, was razor-sharp, thwarting scoring chances by Dustin Jeffrey, Alexei Kovalev and Tyler Kennedy. 

Despite the Penguins’ pronounced edge in play, the Flyers drew first blood at the 15:18 mark of the opening frame. James van Riemsdyk bulled his way past Pens defender Deryk Engelland with a strong power move and fed Mike Richards in the slot. The Flyers’ captain bunted the fluttering puck up and over Marc Andre-Fleury for his 21st goal of the season. 

The Penguins responded early in the second period with a rare power-play goal. Kunitz threaded a crisp cross-ice pass to Kennedy, who snapped the puck past Bobrovsky from the right face-off circle to knot the score at 1-1. It was the scrappy winger’s 11th goal in 22 games. 

From that point on the goalies took charge. Fleury stopped Philly sniper Jeff Carter on his doorstep, while Bobrovsky turned aside shots by James Neal, Kovalev and Craig Adams. Early in the final period the Flyers’ rookie made the save of the game when he sticked aside a glorious shorthanded chance by Max Talbot. 

Following five pulsating minutes of overtime, the game went to a shootout. After Letang was denied on the Pens’ first attempt, Kovalev beat Bobrovsky with a deft backhand-to-forehand move. However, Philly’s Daniel Briere victimized Fleury for an equally pretty tally to tie the shootout at 1-1 after three rounds. 

“The Flower” quickly regained his composure. He stopped Richards from point-blank range, setting the table for Kunitz’s game-winning goal. 

It’s always a good feeling to come into this barn and walk away with two points,” Jordan Staal said. 

Ice Chips 
The Pens trail the season series with Philadelphia, 2-3 … Dustin Jeffrey left the game in the second period after injuring his right leg in a collision with Jeff Carter … Max Talbot filled Jeffrey’s spot between Neal and Kovalev … Brooks Orpik received clearance to return to action … Sidney Crosby continues to practice symptom-free. 
 On Deck 


The Penguins return home to face New Jersey (and Jacques Lemaire’s dreaded neutral-zone trap) Friday night. Following an incredible 23-2-2 run, the Devils have lost three out of four to tumble from playoff contention. 

*Be sure to check out Rick’s book, “Total Penguins,” at TriumphBooks.com. A complete and comprehensive book on the team’s rich and colorful history, it’s filled with season-by-season summaries, player profiles and stats, bios on coaches, general managers and owners, photos from the “Post-Gazette” archives, and much, much more. A must have for any true Penguins fan.  

*Be sure to check out Rick Buker’s books,
available at TriumphBooks.com, Amazon.com, and BarnesandNoble.com

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  1. March 26, 2011 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

    They are “Pond hockey” boys….tuffin it out! great job.

  2. TANGER58's Gravatar TANGER58
    March 25, 2011 at 10:26 am | Permalink

    LETS GO PENS! We have to beat the Flyers next week too! It definitely wasn’t the real hard physical games we have come to expect.

    • Rick Buker's Gravatar Rick Buker
      March 25, 2011 at 11:48 am | Permalink

      Yeah, the Flyers seemed strangely subdued … maybe because Carcillo, Pronger and Shelley were out. They gave us all kinds of space, and the Penguins took advantage of it. It was nice to see the Pens get so many chances from between the faceoff circles.

  3. Jean Pronovost's Gravatar Jean Pronovost
    March 25, 2011 at 8:24 am | Permalink

    Or, last night’s victory pulled the Penguins to within four points of the Flyers. 😉

    • Rick Buker's Gravatar Rick Buker
      March 25, 2011 at 9:11 am | Permalink

      Oops. I’d better brush up on my basic math … 🙂

  4. Robin's Gravatar Robin
    March 25, 2011 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    AWESOME game…..LOVELY win!! Gotta love the effort from the boys <3

    • Rick Buker's Gravatar Rick Buker
      March 25, 2011 at 9:15 am | Permalink

      I love this team’s heart. I’ve never seen a Penguins team work so hard.


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