NHL: Penguins start Stanley Cup Playoffs hot vs Flyers

NHL: Penguins start Stanley Cup Playoffs hot vs Flyers

"Obviously, there's some anger in here". "We knew it wasn't going to be easy".

It is a series, not just one game. "But it means the same thing".

So it is on to Game 2 on Friday, and it needs to be better in every area. Gather round the TV set with the brown paper bags with the eye holes cut out.

The Bruins built a 3-1 lead in that series, but the Maple Leafs were undaunted and rallied to tie the series at three games each. Teams are upgraded (or downwgraded) for road wins or home losses, big-margin games (wins by three or more goals), shutouts and overtime wins.

Additionally, the Flyers power play was bad. Think they'll easily recover from this trauma in two nights' time? And when that craziness happens, it has its roots in what happens in the first round. The players did, though. The Bruins are still firing away with Bergeron, Chara, Krejci, Brad Marchand and Tuukka Rask, but they have a slew of young talent making key contributions.

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With the Penguins on a power play, Guentzel got behind Radko Gudas (nine hits) and, from the doorstep, knocked in Derick Brassard's ideal feed to make it 4-0 with 12:10 left in the second.

It was Couturier turning the puck over while trying to skate out of his zone.

In his first full 82-game season, Gourde had a breakout season scoring 25 goals adding 39 assists and boasted a +34 plus-minus rating on the year. Eight of those goals have come with Pittsburgh including the six he scored in the Penguins first Cup in 2015-16.

Then again, so were the Flyers. The Predators should be able to handle the Avalanche in four games easily as they are stronger at each position and Avalanche starting goalie Semyon Varlamov is injured and won't be available in the first round. Murray stopped 24 shots. Not one at any time during FOUR power plays. Their best players were better than ours. I left him in there after the first (period) after the fourth [goal] because I thought there was a lot of areas of his game where he was seeing the game, he was battling hard. I'll take the credit for the power play (failures). "You know what, he's our guy".

More than just the players needing to make adjustments and find a higher gear, this is as big a test as there is for Dave Hakstol. "It tests you and pushes you to get better". The top defenseman Cam Fowler will likely miss this series with a shoulder injury, and Gibson's status is in question after he missed the last three games of the regular season.

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Pittsburgh Penguins' Sidney Crosby redirects a shot past Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Brian Elliott during the second period of Game 1 in Pittsburgh, on April 11, 2018.

"This is a record setting year for us as National Hockey League handle", Las Vegas Superbook's Jay Kornegay said Wednesday morning. "I think personnel has changed".

Instead of looking like a team that some considered one of the hottest in the National Hockey League to end the regular season after winning four of their final five games, the Flyers looked more like a team that should be watching the playoffs from home during their first meeting with the Penguins. Maybe he's planning on an additional hour for that noogie session.

4b - Times since the conference format was introduced in '74-75 the last-place team from each side earned a playoff spot the next season.

The Stanley Cup playoffs have arrived but collectors don't have to wait until after the season to stake a claim on a game-worn post-season jersey.

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At least with his goalies. If Thornton can return at any point for this team during the playoffs, then that would be another huge boost. "You probably see the amount of blocked shots go up in the playoffs, the amount of hits - the little things that may not be on the stat sheet is kind of what I guess gets your team through the playoffs".

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