Saturday, May 23, 2009

Glad I Didn't Bother to Tape It

Game 3 of the ECF was another ugly one for Carolina, final score 6-2 including 2 empty net/garbage time goals.
'Canes came out looking good, Cullen scored the first goal of the game, which was tied 1-1 with about a minute left in the 1st period. Penguins score 2 goals in the last minute, game over.
After that the 'Canes look a step slower than the Pens, who have rush after rush on Cam Ward (who did make some amazing saves to keep the game at 3-2 after Samsonov scored a goal in the 3rd). Malkin, Crosby, and other Pens skate in untouched, when Hurricanes should be at least attempting to put them on their asses. Doesn't happen. On the offensive end, the 'Canes had a measly total of 16 shots on goal in the first two periods combined (added 18 in the 3rd, but it was too late). Fleury is not a brick wall, but you have to put the puck on the net.

What made the game even less pleasant was having to watch it surrounded by Pens fans. Now don't get me wrong, they're not Buffalo or even New Jersey or Boston fans, but still, how an arena ends up with 20% opposing team fans filling the seats during the playoffs i have no idea -- it's ridiculous. Sure there were a few NJ and Boston fans at the RBC during those series, but you'd think that the ECF is a tougher ticket, and there were many more opposing fans than in either of those series. I don't get it.

Back at it on Tuesday, hopefully the 'Canes will give us something to cheer about. One game at a time right now obviously, but frankly i don't see the series coming back to NC even if they can pull something out on Tuesday. Yes, I've been wrong before, many times.


Blogger mookieproof said...

Pittsburgh sports teams have always traveled well. Partly because the fanbase is so rabid, but also because a lot of us have left Pittsburgh and already live in the Triangle, or DC or wherever. Last round the Capitals, as they've done since Leonsis took the team over ten years ago, tried to keep Pens fans out by restricting playoff ticket sales to addresses in the DC area.

There are Steeler bars everywhere and at least here in NYC there's a well-attended Penguin meetup group. It's probably that we yearn for connection to our childhood home, or something. Karl Hendricks should write a song about it.

3:36 AM  
Blogger Emily said...

mookieproof is right about pgh fans. also, and i'm not sure how you're going to feel about this, but picture yourself joining the ranks of the pens fans (after tuesday's game). i always pull for the team who beats the pens, so if it had ended up being the 'canes vs the wings, then i would be screaming my head off for carolina. i mean, if they're good enough to beat my favorite team, then they're good enough for me to cheer them on in the finals. just some food for thought (and it could make the finals more fun, since the pens will be the underdogs).

or not.

9:15 AM  
Blogger peb said...

I think Mookieproof nailed it. It reflects the influx of Northerners (of which I am one) migrating to the Triangle and North Carolina over the past 20 or so years and holding onto their original allegiances. Other fanbases such as Philly and New York as well as Pittsburgh had strong representation down here before the Whalers came. I'd liken it to NFL fans around here still rooting for the Redskins which was generally the team of choice before the Panthers came into existence.

12:46 PM  
Blogger Mac said...

i know that transplants have a lot to do with it, but last night's crowd would imply that Pittsburgh residents move to the Triangle in much greater numbers than people from New Jersey, Boston, Buffalo, or anyone else we've played in playoff series' i've been to! which would be weird.

i think the holiday weekend had something to do with it also -- in 2002 we played Toronto on a weekend that was "Queen's Day" or something - some Canadian holiday - and it was about 30% Leafs fans at least. they all drove down because they couldn't get tickets to games in Toronto.

but Carolina fans should snatch up tickets to a Conference Final game before opposing fans can buy them all -- it's the locals that i'm disappointed in. what good is home ice if you can't actually stop opposing team fans from taunting your own goalie?

2:35 PM  
Blogger Mac said...

a PS to my last comment -- we were also wondering, if the Pens were a franchise that was on the verge of going under 3 years ago, where were all these fans then? it seems like the team wouldn't have been in financial trouble with all this rabid and widespread support!

2:37 PM  
Blogger Dean-C said...

Frank Black had a song on the Fastman Raider Man disc(s)
"I'm not Dead, I'm in Pittsburgh" kinda sums it up.
What happened to the Canes D??? You were accurate, Pitts forwards are skating in untouched. (Granted, they are 2 great forwards among them)
If the Canes were playing the same D they played against Boston they'd be in this series. Pittsburgh is good, but they're not THAT good, and Detroit will prove that in the next round. Point is, Canes played the B's style of Hockey, hard hitting, tough defense, no open ice, and somehow won (I'm still not over it). Now they are playing Pens style, wide open, run and gun, and they are getting spanked. They fired Laviollete and hired MO to get the team playing D,it got them this far, and they abandoned it??? Against a high power offense??? It's fucking sad! Corvo, Pitkanin and the rest of the D squad should be embarrassed. The next game should be a 2 - 1 game. Call it ugly, but that's how you win playoff hockey... just ask Detroit! Insert the hit on Havlat here.

9:36 PM  

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