Yohe: History says Penguins need victory in Game 2
The Penguins suddenly find themselves in unfamiliar territory.
Winning Game 1 of a series at home has been almost automatic for the Penguins during the Sidney Crosby era. Their path to winning series frequently has been marked by starting fast at home.
The Bruins decided to write a different script Saturday, shutting down the Penguins in Game 1 and making Monday's Game 2 close to a must-win for the Penguins.
Recent Penguins history says Game 2 is extremely important.
Consider that the Penguins have been down, 1-0, while facing a Game 2 at home only twice in the Crosby era. In 2010, they lost the opener to Ottawa but won Game 2, and ultimately the series, in six games.
Last season, the Penguins lost Game 1 at home against the Flyers and followed that up with an 8-5 loss in Game 2. They never recovered, losing the series in six games.
Only one time in Penguins history — the opening round of the 1996 playoffs against Washington — did they drop the first two games at home but come back to win the series.
In other words, Game 2 against the Bruins looms large. It sounds like a lot of pressure, but the Penguins were surprisingly upbeat in the moments following Game 1, exuding a feeling that Boston's 3-0 victory wasn't as dominant as the score suggests.
“I think we're fine,” left wing Jarome Iginla said. “We just need to stay focused and get ready for Game 2.”
Game 2 historically is the contest that presents the most strategic changes. Each coach has been able to gauge what happened in the series opener and react accordingly.
Boston coach Claude Julien, pleased with his team's 3-0 win, said many facets of the Bruins' game need to improve for them to earn a trip to the Stanley Cup Final.
The Penguins, naturally, feel the same about their performance in Game 1. But they're hardly rattled.
More than the Xs and Os, the Penguins believe maintaining their poise will be the key to a series victory.
Coach Dan Bylsma had a sense of confidence about him Sunday. He shook off the suggestion that the Penguins' collective loss of temper in Game 1 was similar to their meltdowns last season against the Flyers.
Instead, Bylsma said it reminded him of Game 5 against the Detroit Red Wings in the 2009 Stanley Cup Final. The Penguins, of course, kept their cool in Games 6 and 7 that spring, winning the Stanley Cup.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- NFL coaches weigh in on Polamalu’s legacy
- Penguins’ Letang leaves hospital, ‘day-to-day’ with concussion
- Alvarez latest in Pirates’ revolving door at first base
- Outdoor notices: March 30, 2015
- Ice Miners clinch 2nd place, home-ice advantage
- Pitt’s Amara offers Vision of hope
- From sticks to pucks, Mt. Pleasant collector wields power of the Pens
- Shortfalls sabotage promise of union retirees’ pensions
- Building damaged, no injuries after Fayette recycling center fire
- Starkey: Next frontier for Steelers offense
- South Side house part of former Steeler’s end game