RECAP: Game 14. Pens beat Blue Jackets 4-2

Really bizarre game. The Blue Jackets aren't as bad as the game seemed, but, really, try telling anyone that the Metro Division isn't the worst in hockey, and maybe all of organized sports, right now:

Regardless of that, you can't take away Marc-Andre Fleury's performance. He stole the game. The Blue Jackets had unlimited chances, and the Penguins’ offense basically hit four solo homers.

Three big questions right now:

1. Do you start Fleury tonight?
2. Can the Penguins clinch the division before New Year’s Eve?
3. Should Ray Emery be arrested?

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RECAP:

FIRST PERIOD

Worth noting that the Blue Jackets haven't played since last Sunday. But that didn't seem to faze them as they came in on Fleury like Miley Cyrus early, but MAF answered all the bells. Pens started pushing back, but the Jackets just kept coming. Fleury had to make a bunch of point-blank saves.

Malkin was on the ice with Vitale for some reason. Malkin put on the ritz and basically beat every Jacket except for Bobrovsky. Vitale should have been open for a pass, but he was still getting up after tripping over the blue line.

Malkin’s work on that earned the Pens a PP. Pens scored before they even set up. Kunitz deflects a Martin slapper. 1-0.

 
 

Next time Malkin was on the ice, Deryk Engelland was his linemate. Think about that. Think about it. Crosby-Kunitz-Dupuis were getting a lot of rushes, but things would fall apart once they gained the blue line.

It took over 10 minutes, but Megna finally got out there with Geno and Jokinen. Bylsma did clean this up over the course of the game. Malkin was with Jokinen 10.30 of the game 5v5 and with Megna about 8 minutes 5v5.[ ExtraSkater ]
 
The Jackets finally did enough to earn a PP of their own. They worked it around but just couldn’t finish. They got another PP. Couldn’t capitalize. All the props to MAF in the first period.
 
 
 

SECOND PERIOD

A little over a minute in…
 
The Pens got a fortuitous bounce off a Jacket’s glove on the bench. Sutter picked up the loose puck, streaked in, and beat Bobby. 2-0.
 

What really happened? Tanner Glass with a great stick-lift.

Captured by @mikedarnay. [ Pensburgh ]

 
Then the game got away from the Blue Jackets. Jame Wisniewskis took the dumbest penalty ever. He grabbed the puck out of mid-air and tried to pass it out of the zone. Idiot. Letang unleashed one from the point. Snuck in. 3-0.

See ya later, Bobby.
 
 
In came Curtis McElhinney. No clue what to make of that name.

Megna saw some more time with Malkin, and the Pens saw another red light go on. Megnatron. Great pass from Jokinen. 4-0.

 
One of the great new gifs.
 
Really starting to enjoy Megna's game. 
 
At this point, the game was pretty much over. But the Jackets didn't stop. They had their third PP right after that goal. Killed. Fleury was at the montage part of a movie where everything is going great for the main character.
 
Then…Letang kept his haters’ fires warm with some bad defense. 4-1. The Blue Jackets had major momentum, but the Pens were able to turn them away. Maatta and Bortuzzo had some elite two-minute shift because Joe Vitale couldn't get a puck deep.

After the period ended, Niskanen and some guy got in a fight. Niskanen almost smashed his head off the ice.

Great job, refs.
 

THIRD PERIOD

The intermission cooled off the Jackets a bit. They came out and took two dumb penalties. Malkin can't even buy a goal right now:

 

Nothing really else happened for the rest of the third. Columbus is a weird team.

The Jackets scored, and just listen to Paul Steigerwald:

UGHHHHHH.

GAME.

MISCELLANEOUS

FYI if you are going to the Blue Jackets game tonight…

— The arena district is awesome. If you haven't been there, it is what CONSOL should be.

— Official reccommendation on a place to eat: Thurman Cafe.

At most 15 minutes from the arena. Burgers bigger than life.

 

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