Flyers Overwhelm Pens 8-4 in Game 3

Published on April 15th, 2012

Flyers Kimmo Timonen and Pens Sidney Crosby tangle | Source: Andrew King

by Mike del Tufo

Friday, April 13, 2012
This 1st round series shifted to Philadelphia for Game 3 but it was the same result as the first 2 games.  The Philadelphia Flyers defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins 8-4 to take a 3-0 lead in the series.  They have now scored 8 goals in back-to-back games.

For this game, Marc-Andre Fleury started in net for the Pens and Ilya Bryzgalov for the Flyers. 

Flyers forward combinations:
Giroux-Jagr-Hartnell
Briere-Schenn-Simmonds
Couturier-Talbot-Rinaldo
Read-Wellwood-Voracek

Flyers defensemen pairings:
Timonen-Carle
Coburn-Grossman
Lilja-Kubina

Just like the first 2 playoff games between these two teams, there was non-stop action and a lot of rough play.  Pens Jordan Staal opened the scoring by slipping one under Bryzgalov’s shoulder at 3:52 of the 1st period.  Flyers Max Talbot then battled through and scored short-handed at 6:44.  Flyers got a 5-on-3 power-play at 7:24.  Flyers Danny Briere scored at 8:19 during this 2-man advantage.  He then scored again at 11:45 to put the Flyers up 3-1.  The game degenerated after that goal as play got much rougher and at one point, several fights were going on at the same time on the ice.  Pens Kris Letang and Flyers Kimmo Timonen got game misconducts at 12:02.  Pens Aaron Asham then got a match penalty at 14:15 for a vicious high cross-check on Brayden Schenn.  4-on-4 action followed with each team getting a goal.  Pens James Neal scored at 15:17.  Flyers Matt Read then scored at 15:40 to put Flyers up 4-2.  The Flyers had 19 shots in this period.

The teams settled down in the 2nd period and focused more on trying to win the game.  They traded 2 goals each in this period.  Neal scored again for the Pens on the power-play at 10:31.  Read then scored again for the Flyers on the power-play to restore their 2-goal lead at 14:18.  Pens Staal followed that with his 2nd goal of the game when he poked in a rebound at 15:40.  Lastly, Wayne Simmonds swooped in and scored on the power-play at 19:14.  Flyers led 6-4 at the 2nd intermission.

27 seconds into 3rd period, Giroux scored.  He greeted new Pens goalie Brent Johnson who replaced Fleury to start the period.  Neal then leveled Sean Couturier with a blindside hit at 14:40.  Tempers flared again after that.  After things settled back down, Talbot scored at 17:14 to finish the scoring and give the Flyers a 8-4 win. 

On the rough play in this game, Flyers forward Scott Hartnell said, “We knew it was going to be an emotional game but I think that the level that they took it to was not hockey. It’s not what you want to see in hockey…cross-checks in the face, one of their best players, Neal, going up near a couple of guys heads…It’s scary when it comes down to that level. It’s not fun to play with that kind of stuff. You ask the best player in the world, Sidney Crosby, what they were thinking out there and he said ‘well, that’s playoff hockey,’ end quote. For me, that’s not playoff hockey. It’s dangerous hockey, it’s trying to hurt some people out there and it’s scary, you’ve got to keep your head up at all times. Crosby comes in and grabs me from behind and another guy comes and throws about eight bombs at the back of my head. I’m no worse for wear myself but…We’ve got the advantage right now, we’ve got to finish them off here at home. “

Flyers lead the series 3-0.  Game 4 is Wednesday in Philadelphia.

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