If ever you were still undecided on whether or not Ray Shero and Dan Bylsma wanted this team to win the Stanley Cup this year or every year, you got it today when the Pens traded Joe Morrow for Brenden Morrow and swapped picks with the Dallas Stars.
Ray Shero must have something on Nieuwendyk because we don't know why he keeps agreeing to these trades. Or maybe they're in love. Who knows. Because the deals do work for the Pens and the Stars, in theory. Goligoski is putting numbers up, after all. And this deal is hardly the caliber of highway robbery we knew and loved with the Goligoski/Neal+Niskanen deal. This is a statement deal. Shero deals his top prospect that hasn't broken into the NHL because of slow development and stiff competition from an oversized Frenchman in Despres (Morrow) for a 37-year-old rent-a-player (another Morrow), much in the style of the Bill Guerin deal. None of us knew how amazing the Guerin deal was going to be, not only for the Pens' Cup run but for the deepest recesses of our souls and ovaries. Billy G, we'd marry you ten times. Serious.
We don't expect to be delivering Manhattans to Brenden Morrow in our underwear on the deck of a stolen cruise ship anytime soon, but he was the captain of the Stars, and provides a veteran presence lacking on the Pens. Vokoun is the oldest Penguin and we love him but he's a bit of a silent warrior. Craigsy and Mark Eaton are close as well, they have definitely been through The Shit, but they were always going to be role players. Brenden Morrow has a chance to be more than a role player for the Pens. He has the chance to be a lot of things. He's older and the general consensus among people who pay attention to the Stars on the reg is that he has been kind of asstastic this year so far.
But if there's anything that can make you hoist yourself out of the basement, it's the promise of a good linemate. The Crosby line is probably set but Malkin and Sutter could both see looks with him.
But we don't know what yet, because we have to deal with Fucking Philadelphia.
could be interesting.
Oh yeah and no Gene or Kris "Unicorn" Letang tonight.
MOST SHADES OF THE DISTANT PAST
Jeffrey line comes out flying and makes DJ look like a future hall of famer.
The first six minutes, however, produce just one shot.
People who we aren't sure why they're still in the NHL include Max Talbot (who appears to have bathed before the game today), Tyler Kennedy, and Kimmo Timonen.
Despres, safe at home for where he'll hopefully be for a long time, did some kind of sick move going deep and backhanded one on Bryz.
TK proved to us that he has a few skills left by zigzagging into the slot.
WE'RE HOME. So far the Flyers are the Flyers and we haven't even started killing each other's families yet.
The Flyers ice the puck and try to make a line change. Laviolette gets an eyeful of the ref's sac for trying to put on Rinaldo.
Couple shifts later Flyers are in the box, for a dubious elbow. But I guess we'll have to take it.
Pens can't score on it despite excellent puck control. We've seen that script before.
Kennedy is hungry for some reason. Ridiculously awake. Must really hate Philly, no other explanation.
This period has flown, thankfully. Nothing to show for the pace. No goals in the Pens-Flyers game? Really?
Is this treason?
The second period is like, what. We don't know what's happening. Steiggy informs us that Hartnell got benched last game which makes us LOL because we remember when he was an All-Star and everyone said he was some kind of god because he was playing with Giroux.
Shero is in the broadcast booth for like 10 minutes or something talking and it doesn't matter that Steiggy isn't calling the game because nothing happens. Except Martin took a penalty. No idea what the penalty was. Steiggy doesn't either.
oh the Flyers on a PP no one cares
this might be when you want someone to call the game.
Giroux gets a bounce and buries it.
Mother of Christ Fuck Jesus
no reports of a torch being passed are yet released.
But Kunitz does go to the dressing room after a stupid hit by Rinaldo. God is dead.
We always complain about Pens/Flyers becoming special teams battles from hell but maybe THERE'S A REASON FOR THAT.
MOST SUBTLE SIGNS
Kunitz returns quickly. Apparently he's not dead. Sid's line in Bryzgalov's balls but cannot score.
The third will begin on this note but we still feel dirty because Rinaldo is still in the room.
Somehow we're not feeling this the way we normally "feel" these things--but it's up to the Pens, of course, to prove us wrong.
Doesn't start out great. Fleury loses his stick a bunch, lots of chances for Sid's line but no dice, Fleury has to stand extra fucking tall and Zolnerczyk is worthless so pokes a golden chance a mile wide. my god
Crosby line continues to threaten but nothing is getting in. The Flyers don't play this aggressively against literally anyone else.
what the fuck is happening
MOMENT RIGHT BEFORE YOU STARTED PRACTICING SATANIC RITUALS IN PRIVATE
Just when you think the Flyers are going to take the body every time, Simmonds does something stupid while Orpik is making an innocent play in his own zone and the Pens will go to the PP.
Kunitz fucking splits the D as the Flyers defense is blinded by Sidney Crosby sucking. Kunitz hooked on the way to the goal. Almost a penalty shot. But not. Oh Kimmo Timonen, thanks for being you and taking that penalty.
Crosby then sucked some more all over Bryzgalov's face like 20 seconds later:
swagger for daysssss, Captain
and another 1:29 of PP.
The game is wide open after the next play. Everyone is mad. Flyers are pissed they didn't get more than one goal, are probably trying to argue with the refs about the metaphysical definition of the word goal.
Pens don't score on the second PP but still look hungry. We can put away the chalk and sage now. At least it's not a curse.
Flyers are ready to score. Orpik with an egregious giveaway leads to 8 Flyers chances. Just wasn't paying attention to what he was doing. Brooksie do you need a hug? Or a new butcher's knife?
Sutter just straight up ices the puck because everyone is bad and he wants them to know that he is done with this shit.
Icing call ultimately worth it.
DJ has a totally ballin' chance a little bit later but he doesn't shoot it because he hesitated for just a second. Ugh. Tried to pass, what a mess.
everything is a mess, we're hurting over it.
Coburn completely smears Dupuis at the very end of regulation. No idea what's going on. Disgusting boarding call. Dupes is going to the dressing room. Ugh. Mess.
OVERTIME THAT LAUNCHED A THOUSAND SHIPS
Quick commercial break and Dupes is back on the bench for OT. Thank god.
Flyers look like they are going to put it away again but MAF somehow holds the fort. Dupes gets on for his first OT shift. Sets a screen for TK. No idea why they're the two forwards on the ice for this shift. Don't care. TK roofed it. He loves showing up against the sickly orange. He must really want to not get traded for a bag of pucks to Calgary or something.
Tyler has never been happier.
The ponies are running free in the pasture.
TK etc is this 2008 or what?
HOORAY WE THINK YOU BATHED TODAY
Max Talbot did not show up at CONSOL looking like this mess so we were somewhat proud.
ALTERNATIVE THREE STARS
1. DJ - hungry like the wolf
2. Dupes: was a force all day. and then was a hero.
3. Mark Eaton - because, the man is silently carrying like 20 minutes a night and is flawless