Saturday, May 11, 2013

PODCAST: Pens win, 4-3, in OT; Redemption for Brooks Orpik

Brooks Orpik has totally and completely redeemed himself for shooting the worst shot of all time at Sid's face.  What a win.  The Pens may not have deserved to win this game, but who the F cares.  Bye, New York.  And hello Ottawa.  It's the GTOG Podcast.

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Some of the worst goaltending we've ever seen.


  1. One of the reasons - and maybe THE reason - I so love playoff hockey is that it forces me to the edge in every way. I become superstitious, I talk to myself about line combinations in the shower, I watch every game with the feeling that THIS shot will be the one that changes the game and THAT hit will provide the momentum swing the Pens need to get themselves back to their game.

    But yo. This series was a new level. A heretofore undiscovered edge. How did this team run roughshod over the east for 48 games only to be outplayed for 70% of this series by the Islanders. The. Islanders.

    Maybe the only game this season that was anywhere near the level of slop the Pens exhibited in the postseason was the Brandon Sutter game in Montreal. Beyond that, this team was clinical. I don't know where this version of the Penguins came from, but I hope they miss their flight out of Long Island.

    Oh also, that was a trip.

    1. It's a blast watching this shit. I wore my GTOG t-shirt during Games 1, 5 and 6 (all wins). When I went to do laundry this morning, I was about to throw it in the basket. Then I thought better of it.

  2. The only positive I can take from this game is that this team is very good at winning games that they have no business winning - which is a very convenient skill.

    Otherwise... they couldn't possibly continue to play this stupid and sloppy, right? They couldn't possibly continue to have at least %50 of their dump-ins and clears fail, right? Tanger doesn't make a turn-over that egregious for a really long time, right? I mean that sincerely: they really can't possibly continue to make decisions that bad and out of character... right?

    But the slate is wiped clean, and I do think the Isles were a bad match-up for them. Hopefully, the first-round bugaboo is out of their heads, and they can calm down a bit. Back to the beginning in couple of days!

    1. No choice but to move on from this. This series highlighted a lot of the flaws with this team, and probably made it clear that most of them aren't going away.

      But like you said ... the Pens still won. And that's something.

  3. You guys are fucking nuts.... Malkin is so much better than Tavares... Tavares had the series of his life, scored 5 points in 6 games, while being a minus 4 in even strength... Malkin wasn't at his best, but still played amazing hockey when needed him the most. 11 points in 6 games, and finished even plus/minus, and much of his points were on the PP.... You can talk about his turnover in game 4, but the truth is, if it wasn't for him tying the game almost by himself, we weren't even going to be close in that game....
    You guys also give Letang too much crap. He is probably the best defender in the league. Sure he made some mistakes, but that's what defenders do... They are responsible for making the transition from d to offense, and they are going to turn it over sometimes... Letang's offensive production is also ridiculous, with a point per game... also, he was a plus 4, while playing 27 minutes per game... Vokoun should have frozen that puck, and he knows it... It was a suicide pass he gave to Letang, because he wasn't ready for it.. The Pens are getting ready for a whistle, when Vokoun just throws the puck, it catches Letang off guard, the game is too fast, props to the Islanders for being ready, and tracking the puck down...
    You guys talk as only Letang and Malkin made mistakes in the team...
    Nobody ever dares to talk if Crosby or Martin has a bad game... Martin had probably his worst game in the season yesterday, he was just bad the whole game, couldn't make plays, he was getting owned in his own zone as well... Sure, he came through late, but that doesn't erase the rest of the game... Crosby as well, he was hardly noticeable apart from his assist... The same thing happened in game 4, I'm not even sure if he played that game.... Which is normal, everyone has good and bad games... But in Pittsburgh, only Malkin and Letang make mistakes...

  4. Same thing about Sutter... He is not a fucking scorer, he is a defensive forward... He is not Staal, that's why we got a top 10 pick and another prospect with him, for staal..... He does his job great... The Tavares line couldn't get it going against him.. His 2 points in 6 games, are what we can expect for him offensively ... Defense is what he is responsible for.. he does a good job on that.. The only even strength goal he was on the ice against, was a shot from the point in game 4, that shouldn't have gone in.... He played almost 16 minutes per game, and he was a plus player... that's more than you can ask for from your third line center... The guy who clearly under performed in this series was Morrow.. The Islanders speed completely exposed him.. I think he'll bounce back against Ottawa, but his series was awful. Niskanen and Murray also didn't play very well.
    But if you want to know, the other 3 forwards that were minus players , were Crosby, Iginla and Kunitz... but of course, no one is going to talk about that...

    1. You're probably right about Malkin vs. Tavares. But as we said on the podcast, now is a really stupid time to be having that debate anyway so who cares.

      As for Malkin and Letang's mistakes ... Yeah, they make a lot of great plays, but they also make a lot of plays that lead directly to goals. They have unparalleled talent. We expect better from them than giving a goal directly to the other team, even if they've scored a bunch for the Pens. But don't make us out to be guys that hate them. We love them both as players. We have high expectations for them, that's all. And I guarantee that when the coaches watch the tape, they agree with us.

      Sounds like you really want to read a blog that rips Crosby's play. Good luck finding that.

  5. How do you think you guys sound when you say you would trade Malkin; who is the reigning MVP, won the art ross 2, conn smyth trophy (playing on a line with Talbot and Fedotenko, if you want to talk about linemates), all of that in his first 6 seasons as a Penguin; for Tavares, an Islander who has failed to reach the one point per game plateau in his first 4 seasons, ...Straight up, no doubt... Certainly doesn't sound like a Malkin fan....
    Tavares may never reach Malkin's rookie season numbers...
    Yeah, and I don't know how the dumbest player in the league leads the Pens in Ice time, leads all the defenders in scoring, has a great +/-, and was nominated for the norris trophy... I think a lot of players wish they were as dumb as Letang...
    And I'm not looking for a blog that rips Crosby, the guy is a beast, the best player of the season... But Malkin is in the same level as him. He has done too much for the Penguins to be treated like this... Malkin doesn't get half of the respect he deserves, as he would get in other teams... Same for Letang in that matter... Yes, they make mistakes, like every player does, like Crosby does as well. But people don't talk about it, but they will rip Malkin and Letang every time they have chance, just pisses my off.

  6. What are you talking about that we're not fans of Malkin? We wrote a song about the guy and posted it on May 8th. That was all of 4 days ago.

    It's great that you're protecting Malkin from being "treated like this," but the fact is that when a dude who makes that much money and is that talented has a turnover like he had in Game 4, or plays as poorly as he did early in Game 6, people are going to talk about it. It doesn't mean that people don't like him. It means that people are watching hockey games and reacting to them.

    Letang might be the dumbest player in the league because for all the accolades you mentioned, he makes mistakes that even far lesser players find ways to avoid. We aren't saying he isn't one of the best players in the league. He obviously is. The sky is the limit for him. But imagine how much better he could be if he cut down on the mistakes? You might point to the fact that he's a point-per-game defenseman as evidence that he's great. And we agree. We're just saying he could be even better if he cut back on some of the mistakes. If you think that means we don't like Letang, then you have an odd definition of what it means to like a player.

    As for Crosby ... when Crosby turns the puck over and it leads directly to goals -- like Malkin and Letang did in the Islanders series -- we will discuss it. People don't talk about the mistakes Crosby makes as much as the mistakes Malkin and Letang make because he doesn't make as many.

  7. Ok, so because Malkin turned 1 puck over, that led to a goal , we should trade him, and forget that we were only tied in that game because of him... He created 2 goals, but made a mistake on one against, crucify him. I didn't hear anyone praising him for being the best offensive player of the series, with 2 points in almost every single game... The only one he had 1 point, was game 5, when the Penguins didn't need more.... He was more of a offensive threat than Crosby most of the time. Crosby, that by the way played poorly in game 4 and game 6, he wasn't even noticeable for most of those games... But no one will talk about that, just about Malkin being terrible on the first half of game 6...
    And I agree about Letang, his potential is gigantic, and he is still not using it all. but he is still the best defender in the league. His transition is usually awesome, probably the best breakout passes in the league, great puck mover, sick hands, good shot, great skater, and solid on his own zone. But he makes a mistake when Vokoun should have frozen the puck, and he is the dumbest player in the league. Because, clearly, if a player is not Lidstrom, he is not good enough... He made mistakes, but not more than the rest of the Penguins D.... In game 6, he was the best defender for the Penguins... Paul Martin and Orpik made a huge mistake on the second goal, but no one talks about it..
    Guys, don't get me wrong. I really enjoy your blog, the podcasts and posts are great, you guys are on target with most of your opinions. And I'm not asking for you guys to rip on crosby or Martin. But in this series, it hasn't been a review, or a critic on the team, it has been rants on Malkin and Letang, enough of that.. And Sutter too, he is doing his job just fine...

    1. I love Guilherme's emotion. But couldn't disagree more about the standard by which we evaluate Malkin and Letang. First, no one is advocating trading Malkin. That was a pure, spontaneous, and half-joking hypothetical. Second, we're not holding them to any standard other the ones they themselves set when they play at the level they're capable of. They are the guys who the Pens will have to make franchise-altering decisions about this summer. You don't want to sign both to huge extensions this summer unless you are damn sure there is minimal downside. All we're doing is questioning whether or not that's true. It's a legitimate discussion.

  8. What Artistry said.

    Also, I understand the instinct to defend Geno because he is the subject of a lot of unfair criticism, but you're lashing out at the wrong guys. We love Geno. If we point out a fact -- that he had a terrible turnover on the winning goal in Game 4, for example -- that doesn't mean we're Geno-Bashers. We're reacting to specific plays in specific games. Again, we wrote a song about him FIVE DAYS AGO.

    And yeah, Letang plays like he's the dumbest player in the league a lot of the time because while other guys make bad plays because of their physical limitations, Letang often makes bad plays for no reason at all. And by limiting his own ceiling like that, he's being dumb. It doesn't mean we're Letang Bashers, either. He's a great player, and a deserving Norris nominee. And he might be worth $8 million/year on his next deal.

    But throwing the puck directly to the other team is a bad play, regardless of whether Vokoun should have covered it. Thinking otherwise reeks of excuse-making and makes it seem like you're bending the facts to fit the narrative you want. It's like excusing Fleury for scoring a puck into his own net because his defenseman didn't clear the puck out 5 seconds earlier. Maybe they both made bad plays ... it doesn't have to be one or the other.

    We love Letang and Malkin, but for the Pens to win the Cup, they have to be better and much more consistent. And if that seems like a crazy statement in light of their point production in the first round, that's not because we're bashing them. Quite the opposite. It's because we know what they're both capable of.

  9. i've been looking around and this guy's not alone. there is a curiously large contingent of people who feel that sub-par play shouldn't be called out or even discussed, especially in regards to malkin. i'd like to remind guilherme and everyone else that this is the Stanley Cup Playoffs. turning one puck over in one game can buy you a ticket to elimination. this is not the time to forgive and forget. furthermore, people need to better differentiate between interpreting criticism as saying "he had one bad game so we should trade him" vs. "if he continues to have bad games and costing the team in the playoffs, maybe we don't need to pay him 8, 9, or 10 million dollars a year from now on." they're totally different things. the first is just wrong and the second is just reasonable.