We're taking a look back at some of the best moments from the three Senators playoff series. Time to relive that Ryan Malone goal from Game 2. Click it.
After years of futility and with the franchise in serious trouble when the puck dropped to open the season, that 2006-2007 team was an enjoyable surprise. They climbed from the depths of hell to deliver a 100-point performance. Ray Shero was already showing what he could do personnel-wise. Fleury's game had markedly improved. The Pens were rolling with 3 solid lines that could match up with anybody. They beat the Flyers 8 times that season, if we recall correctly. Michel Therien, due to somewhat of a language barrier, felt distant, but he knew how to push that '06-'07 team.
The first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The first time in 6 calendar years we all felt that playoff energy. Everyone gets amped up around playoff time anymore, but that 2006-2007 feeling was special.
And the Pens headed to Ottawa. They both ended the season with 105 points, but the Sens held the tiebreaker, so Ottawa had home ice. After a 6-3 baptism by fire in Game 1, Game 2 rolled around.
This was the game. The game that turned the already-fairy-tale season into something extra. Being modest fans, we felt like the Pens were playing with house money going into the Sens series. Basically nobody gave the Pens a chance in this series. This Game 2 in Ottawa served notice to Pens fans and the NHL that the team was already built to compete.
One of our favorite celebrations of all time is Gary Roberts' arm-pump after his goal to tie at 2. That was met not even 5 minutes later by Chris Kelly coming in and sniping that shot past MAF to make it 3-2. Even watching it now brings back that dreadful feeling. But then Gary Roberts answered back 3 minutes later. He goes crashing in behind the net, destroying Redden, loosening the puck so Ouellet can grab it and feed Staal. Tied game. Then 2 minutes and change after, the Crosby goal shook the foundation of Pittsburgh.
What an amazing game that was. Although the Pens were swept at home in Game 3 and 4 and then had one final dance in Game 5, the series was exactly what the Pens needed. Looking back at some highlights, MAF had to be insane that entire series just so the Pens could have a chance. The games in Pittsburgh had a more-than-average amount of weird bounces, but Ottawa was clearly the better team. Game 2 lives on forever.
Man. Screw the feeling from the previous year of dazed wonderment. The Pens went into the 2007-2008 playoffs pissed off. They ended up running the Eastern Conference into the ground on their way to Detroit in the Finals.
Game One of the first round was against the Sens. This time, the Pens had home ice, and Gary Roberts brought the house down with a goal a minute into the game. He later went on to score another goal and challenged the entire Senators team at the end of the game. That Sykora one-timer ain't no joke, either.
Our boy Ryan Malone gets a nod for the goal at the end of Game 2 to put the Pens up. The fun begins at 4:30 mark.