Meanwhile, after a tremendous effort last night where bodies were routinely being thrown in front of flying pucks, the Pens now stand very much alive and carrying a fire which looks to be inextinguishable. This team is so deep that its' two superstars can be held completely off the score sheet and still win. In fact, therein may lie the root of Detroit's problem.
Also, has anyone noticed the lack of production by Marian Hossa? Does anyone else think he might be injured? There's no way he's the same player that he was last year. He possibly may have a groin injury or knee strain because he simply does not have the same jump in his skates. This is "Too bad" for him and Detroit.
If you're a Penguins player you can go into "The Joe" with the attitude that, "We've already had our triple dose of bad luck here. "Hidden vigorish" says that's going to change right now." Also, the fact that this team has now taken this series further than last year's club and 60 minutes from a championship has to have whet their appetite even more to finally hold the beloved Stanley Cup.
You could see it written all over the Penguin players' faces last night. Sidney Crosby had a look where he would have laced up his skates again right then and there if Detroit would have played. However, one of the more striking interviews I heard was with the recently-activated Petr Sykora. Sykora has been a healthy scratch for quite some time, but last night, Dan Bylsma decided to play him. He's been a successful shooter who has been mired in a prolonged slump that was probably fed by a nagging shoulder injury.
Sykora spoke about the terrible memories he's had of losing the Stanley Cup in a seventh game earlier in his career. He spoke of how he has so often questioned himself as to whether he could have done more or ever get a chance to redeem himself. Sykora, speaking softly, said that before last night he was afraid that he wouldn't get back on the ice in this series. Now, flash back to images of Sykora throwing himself in front of shots, diving to the ice, not caring for his own personal safety, but wanting that cup. Sykora never said last night that he was injured, but apparently after taking off his skates his foot said otherwise. The Pens announced today that Sykora is out for game seven with a broken foot. Sykora, for as brief as his chance was, had left it all on the ice for his team. Regardless of Friday's outcome, he'll never have to question himself again. Maybe this time he'll get his name engraved on the cup. His contribution will be neither a goal or an assist, but a blocked shot and broken bone.
ABOVE: Did you ever look in your rear view mirror at night and see something as scary as this? I'm sure that you haven't, unless you're currently a member of the Detroit Red Wings team, in which case I'd like to ask you to log out immediately! Yes, this object is definitely closer than it may appear.