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Sunday, April 1, 2012

Penguins - Flyers Brawl — Crosby Cross-checked — Vitale Nails Briere

On Sunday, April 01, 2012, the Penguins hosted the Flyers in a game that had some meaning because the Penguins were only three points up on the Flyers (102 – 99) before the game and they wanted to ensure that they kept home ice advantage in the playoffs over the Flyers since the two teams will surely meet in the first round. Well, the Flyers overcame the Pens in this game and that puts them just one point back with each team having three games left, including a meeting between each other in the last game of the regular season on Saturday in Pittsburgh—which should be a heated affair. The Pens will travel to Boston to meet the Bruins on Tuesday and then return home to host the Rangers on Thursday, while the Flyers will host the Rangers and the Sabres before Saturday’s game. The Pens and Flyers met in the first round of the playoffs in 2009 and the Pens won the series in six games and went on to win the Stanley Cup. I believe that will happen again this year.

The story of today’s game was a dirty play by Brayden Schenn, a big hit by Joe Vitale, and a brawl instigated by the Flyers.

Brayden Schenn cross-checked Crosby to the ice from behind when Crosby was just casually skating to the bench after Steve Sullivan’s goal with less than five minutes left in the game. It was a gutless crosscheck by Schenn and this is the type of garbage that needs to be taken out of the game. Schenn saw the name Crosby on the sweater and decided to see if he could give him another injury—and that is undeniable. Yet, the refs didn’t even give Schenn a penalty and this is what makes fans want to turn off their TV sets and computers. 

To see the cheap shot on Crosby by Schenn click the following link. The announcer in this broadcast doesn’t have the intelligence of a worm because he says that Schenn is a “character kid, tremendous character.” Tremendous character??? For crosschecking a guy from behind when he isn’t expecting it, and doing it to a player who he knew was coming back after suffering a concussion! That isn’t character, but it is mental illness! I am glad at least that Asham got a few good punches in on Schenn.

Please remember to click the back arrow in your browser to return to my site to watch the brawl.  

After Sullivan’s goal, the Pens pulled Fleury and the Flyers scored an empty-netter at the 18:45 mark, making it 6-3 in their favor. Pens coach Dan Bylsma put out his fourth line to finish the game and Vitale nailed Danny Briere with a clean body check as Briere crossed his own blue-line. The Flyer players did not like the hit and started a brawl. Arron Asham was able to get some good punches in on Schenn, and Engelland gave Wayne Simmonds of the Flyers a deserved beating for wanting to fight. Coach Laviolette of the flyers lost his cool although he had no reason to do so since it was Schenn who started it by cross-checking Crosby and the Vitale hit on Briere was entirely clean. Laviolette got up on the boards and he and Pens assistant coach Tony Granato yelled at each other. 

I have revoved the embedded video to speed-up my site. Click the link to watch it on youtube and then click the back arrow on your browser to return to my site.

The Pens ended-up with a power-play and scored to end the game with a 6-4 loss. The next three games for each team will be important because home-ice advantage is at stake.
TJ Stanley