“So we’re down 3-0 to an obviously superior squad! We’re getting lumped up and beat to every puck! shift after shift! What an embarrassment to our city and our fans! What the hell can we do? Maybe we were lucky to make it even this far! Looks like we’ll be hitting the links soon. There’s no way we can come back and win this thing. How embarrassing! How did this happen? It’s was like POW! All of a sudden we are down 3-0! There is no hope. Oh, I wish I was dead!”
- Flyer’s fan Dean Salviatore after the first period of game 1
Those of you that chose to read on after the “POW” comment above can understand why I posted such a comment. I needed to shove a crap filled pie into the faces of the nay sayers, the whiners, and the “at least we got the Buccos” losers! It’s not like we are rooting for Mark Madden to win a beauty contest or to win at dodge ball! We are not betting a 3 legged horse will win the Triple Crown! The Penguins are an organization that experienced 3 or more losses in a row and rebounded to win the next 5 and then 8 in a row respectively! Yep, the Pens are streakier than the windows on the 71A so why not jump on another good one? Maybe a quick reminder of taking an early 3-0 lead then losing will actually turn the Pens frowns upside down and remind them that it can indeed happen! Maybe it will remind the Flyer’s that stranger things have happened. Oh how quickly things can turn around. Maybe the Flyer’s will approach game 4 with the same arrogance and “we can just sit on the lead” pomposity as the Penguins experimented with in game 1. Maybe the Pens can win another 4 in a row. Maybe the fans and more importantly THE PLAYERS will read this and know that all hope is not lost!
That said, I’m hoping the Pens players are as angry as I am! After the first 2 games I was sort of shocked and didn’t have much of an answer for a team that on paper should be up 3-0 or at least 2-1 in this series. Now that the shock has blossomed into anger, I feel a strange sense of confidence that the Pens will win in 7 with the remaining 4 games being decided by a huge and decisive margins in all aspects of the game. Now that anger has replaced shock and dismay, I think the Pens can get back to playing Penguin’s hockey. I think that the fire that should rest in the bellies of champions will singe the butterflies and start a raging inferno that will last for the required 16 wins it takes to bring the cup back to Pittsburgh. Of course we must win the next 4 against the Flyer’s to advance, but as cliche’ as it sounds, “we have to take things one game at a time”. That said, let me present how the next 4 games could play out in order for the Pens to advance.
Game 4: Pens have nothing to lose except butterflies. They gather themselves and get back to playing Penguin’s hockey. Pens win by decided margin.
Game 5: Pens come back home and convince a shocked and over confident Flyer’s team by winning big again.
Game 6: Flyer’s find themselves down early and fear settles in. The same will be said for their fans who turn on their team as the Pens tie the series and head home for a decisive game 7.
Game 7: Pens continue to find their stride as they handily dispose of the timid, outclassed, and tired Flyer’s.
See you in the next series Pens fans!