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#1 TheCaptain19

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 12:08 AM

Today I was talking with my brother during the game and he said analysts were discussing whether or not Malkin would have any gas left in the tank. He never had to play this many games pre-NHL, and apparently he sloped off this time last year. He was one of the less noticable contributors against Philly in the ECF. Tonight it didn't seem that he was much of a force. Does he have anything left in the tank? Is he just on a little mini slump?

Edited by TheCaptain19, 25 May 2008 - 12:09 AM.


#2 Rice

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 12:14 AM

He was horrible tonight -- could be injury, could be fatigue. Who knows?
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#3 Hossa

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 12:15 AM

The Pens had plenty of days off in between series so no, I don't think it's physical unless he's hiding a nagging injury.

It's more of the way he's being defended right now. He has a hard time using his speed to get away from checkers, and he needs more hunger/intensity to win puck battles in the dirty areas.

#4 Pensfan

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 12:24 AM

QUOTE (Hossa @ May 25, 2008 - 01:15AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The Pens had plenty of days off in between series so no, I don't think it's physical unless he's hiding a nagging injury.


I personally think they had too much time off. Malkin is a high energy player that carries his dominate play of one game into another. He was just not ready (mentally) to face the Wings tonight, plain and simple.

#5 Marty Midnight

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 12:28 AM

Malkin has a history of failing the first time on a stage and returning the next year to pull it off. In the Russian super league he did that, and in the post season last year he was invisible but came out great over the first 2.2 rounds this year. It could be that he just dosen't have it in him this year, but only time will tell.
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#6 10 Minute Misconduct

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 12:40 AM

I've said it before and i'll say it again. He disappears when you start hitting him. In the Philly series after Richards rocked him and he scored that goal he was always quick to give up the puck.

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#7 truebladearmy

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 04:12 AM

QUOTE (10 Minute Misconduct @ May 24, 2008 - 10:40PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I've said it before and i'll say it again. He disappears when you start hitting him. In the Philly series after Richards rocked him and he scored that goal he was always quick to give up the puck.


There is no doubt that Crosby and Malkin weren't use to being hit so often. Datsyuk alone had like 6 hits mostly on Malkin or Crosby (I don't have the exact stat, but I was following the stats on nhl.com through the game).

It's like I said before, those guys are use to playing a fast transitional game, get the puck to the net, and set up nice scoring chances. Nobody pittsburg played before will have 4 sticks right there waiting, while a kronwall flings himself bodily into your scorer. Detroit is entirely defense first. We get so many scoring chances because we keep the puck moving back to the other end over and over. I think Malkin and Crosby adjusted poorly to having so much defense right at the net, and so little time to set up plays. When the puck was in our zone it was in the corners with three wings on it. The rest of the time it was either bouncing to neutral ice, or being carried there.

I think Pittsburg will change things up a bit for game 2, and I think we'll see more dumping. Pittsburgs biggest offensive flaw in my opinion was that they tried to carry it to the net over and over, which basically activated our best defense methods. They're going to have to dump and fight for it at the boards. It's not philly where crosby and malkin can skate circles around a bunch of bruisers anymore smile.gif And those centering passes that were so effective for them so far, aren't going to get through guys like lidstrom, rafalski, dats and zett like I'm sure they're use to.

Other flaw I saw Pittsburg make, and it was also a strategy issue, was when they were playing defense in their own end they were trying to keep the forwards off the net, and leaving the point wide open. We must have taken twenty good attempted shots from the top of the circle right down that open lane over the course of the night (I'm including shots that missed the net or were blocked as well). A team like philly doesn't have a lot of defensive scoring. They rely on a few power guys to get it to the net and kick in rebounds. Pittsburg was still playing a defense good for causing turnovers and getting a good transition back up the ice, but in the process our D men had more freedom than I've seen them have all playoffs, and even our forwards were driving the puck right down those open lanes...right to the front of the net.

If Pittsburg had maintained their first period speed and puck transition all through the game, it would be a different story. I was a little nervous in the opening moments of the game because they looked incredibly fast and hungry. I thought for sure I was going to see 20 scoring chances from them by the end of the game. I think once Detroit realized 1) Hey, they're carrying the puck in every single time, and 2) They're not pressuring our blue line at all....that was when things shifted.

But that's just my opinion.

#8 Datsyerberger

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 04:26 AM

Out of gas? I doubt it. He got shut down, plain and simple. I'm around the same age as Malkin, though my fitness is absolute s*** compared to a pro hockey player.. and even I'm ready to go full force after a week of rest. I seriously doubt that was a problem for him, either.
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#9 The Secret

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 08:40 AM

I think he's young and still learning how to play playoff level hockey. Zets and Dats vanished for their first few years too. Now Dats was our best player by far and Zets was right behind him, IMO. That Malkin is fun to watch, on or off his game, you can see the player he will develop into once he gets some more experience and learns to fight for what he wants. Datsyuk was a pansy in the beginning, yesterday he actually threw some meaningfull checks.

Let's not forget that he is up against the greatest Defense on ice as well. Our D is and will continue to limit the Offensive flash that The Pens possess... so long as we stay out of the penalty box!!!! Very important, more so this series then any other!

#10 donfishmaster

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 08:53 AM

QUOTE (10 Minute Misconduct @ May 25, 2008 - 01:40AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I've said it before and i'll say it again. He disappears when you start hitting him. In the Philly series after Richards rocked him and he scored that goal he was always quick to give up the puck.

I thought the boys just did a good job of keeping him bolted down.
My buddy I was watching the game with has a good comment:
"Hit Crosby a few times and he gets flustered and acts like a puss."
A concur...

#11 Hockeymom1960

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 09:00 AM

QUOTE (donfishmaster @ May 25, 2008 - 09:53AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I thought the boys just did a good job of keeping him bolted down.
My buddy I was watching the game with has a good comment:
"Hit Crosby a few times and he gets flustered and acts like a puss."
A concur...


Your buddy's right. I kept telling everyone, hit Crosby, hit Crosby, he don't like it, laugh.gif


#12 OsGOD

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 10:29 AM

Out of gas or overrated when playing against people/teams of skill?

I pick the latter



Just one chance is all i ever wanted...just one time i'd like to win the game...from now on i'll take the chance if i can have it...just one just one

#13 puckbags

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 10:43 AM

Malkin really reminds me of Jagr in a sense, when they are on their game their skill is incredible but when things aren't going their way they are invisible and they become visibly frustrated and take silly penalties!! Don't get me wrong, I would expect that some time in the series Malkin will bring his A game but last night wasn't that night for sure!!

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#14 akustyk

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 10:56 AM

I think Malin just had a bad game. expect him to come out flying next time
and be a threat. like many Pens he was over-trying in Game 1 but once
they simplify their game Gino will be a problem for our D

#15 NHLrules?

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 12:29 PM

He had to keep his head up last night in fear he may lose it.

I said before, if you hit these guys they will disappear.



#16 Echolalia

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 01:40 PM

He's not out of gas. 'He has no runway to take off' would be a better analogy, because the moment he or Crosby gets the puck theres absolutely no where our team allows them to go.
The Wings did a spectacular job of suffocating the Pens last night; Malkin and Crosby in particular.

#17 MannyMaltby3418

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 01:54 PM

I liked that part of the game where Malkin seemed to control the puck for a moment in the Wings' zone and then bam, Datsyuk hit him into the boards, takes the puck from him and brings in into the Pens' zone for a scoring chance. thumbup.gif


#18 Barrie

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 02:01 PM

Last week I heard Darren Eliot of CBC say he thinks Pittsburgh is hiding a Malkin injury.
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#19 DaKineMaui

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 02:10 PM

QUOTE (MannyMaltby3418 @ May 25, 2008 - 08:54AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I liked that part of the game where Malkin seemed to control the puck for a moment in the Wings' zone and then bam, Datsyuk hit him into the boards, takes the puck from him and brings in into the Pens' zone for a scoring chance. thumbup.gif


I know the EXACT play you're speaking of. Yet another Datsyuk "Gimme that! Mine! Follow ME!"


#20 haroldsnepsts

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 02:20 PM

I think it's a little early to write Malkin off, but I loved the way the Wings handled him and Crosby last night.

I'm guessing they weren't expecting to get knocked around quite as much as they did, with the exception of Kronner and maybe Stuart. But I bet Crosby would've never thought he'd get put on his ass by Datsyuk, then Zetterberg. biggrin.gif





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