The final score stood 8-4 on Sunday evening as the Philadelphia Flyers took on the Pittsburgh Penguins in game 3 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals. With this win the Flyers now have 3 wins under their belt and only need one more win to clench a spot in the next round of the playoffs. And if the win wasn’t enough, this game had everything: scoring from both teams, brawls, punches, even ejections – but it seemed the one thing it didn’t have was strong goaltending from either goalie.
From Sunday night’s game, anyone can tell that these teams “just don’t like each other.” The first period which featured 18 penalties and 3 ejections turned into complete mayhem during the third period. James Neal’s dirty blind-side hit on rookie Flyer center Sean Couturier sparked a series of fights at the 15-minute-18-second mark. At the end of this madness there were 55 penalty minutes given and it didn’t end there – Scott Hartnell and Craig Adams decided to duel it out at center ice after everything else had cooled off a bit.
Over the first three games of this series the Flyers have scored 20 goals – 17 of which were against Marc-Andre Fleury. Fleury was so wobbly on Sunday night that he was replaced by back-up goalie Johnson after he let 6 goals in during the first two periods. Normally solid Illya Bryzgalov was also shaky, giving up 4 goals during the first two periods.
One thing is for certain about this series: tomorrow night’s game is going to be a game that will probably go down as the most remembered game in Stanley Cup Playoff history. If previous meetings between these two teams have shown anything it is that they don’t like each other, and the Pens will be sure to show it since they will be desperate to win this fourth game in order to keep their playoff hopes alive. Look out for a nothing if not entertaining game tomorrow night Flyers fans.
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