Penguins Notebook: Day off a good and bad break for Penguins
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The Penguins won Game 3 of the Stanley Cup final Wednesday night, so they probably wouldn't have minded if Game 4 had started about a half-hour after the final buzzer.
Instead, the series has gone into suspended animation until tomorrow, when the Penguins and Detroit will meet at 8:08 p.m. at Mellon Arena.
There are conflicting perspectives on what would have been in the Penguins' best interest -- playing again quickly to capitalize on the momentum generated in Game 3, or having two full days between games to rest and recover from the rigors of the first three games -- and center Max Talbot managed to embrace both during a news conference yesterday.
"It would be fun [to have played Game 4 last night], because obviously we have the momentum on our side, and that's huge in the Stanley Cup final," he said.
"But ... sometimes, it's good to just relax a little bit. You look back at what you've done, and you have a little bit more time to rest and to think about next game.
"Obviously, we are really excited. We want to get it back out there. But it's not bad to have a little rest like that."
Penguins defenseman Rob Scuderi has a badly swollen upper lip -- and stitches inside and above his mouth -- to show for an inadvertent high stick he took from defense partner Hal Gill during Game 2.
Not surprisingly, he's a bit sour about it. In a uniquely hockey sort of way.
It's not so much that Gill's stick smacked him in the face and gave him some long-lasting souvenirs of this series -- Scuderi understands that those things happen -- but that the offending weapon didn't belong to a Red Wing.
After all, if a Detroit player had clipped him, the Penguins would have gotten a power play that might have changed the course of what became a 3-0 defeat.
"[Gill] said he was sorry," Scuderi said. "It's just part of the game. It's unfortunate that it wasn't on [Detroit], because it would have been four minutes."
Penguins center Sidney Crosby received a lot of attention for scoring the Penguins' first two goals during their 3-2 victory in Game 3.
The others elements of his game, however, seemed to make at least as much of an impression on his teammates.
"When guys play like that, you see them throwing bodychecks and back-checking and doing all the little things that it takes to win the final, it just inspires every guy down the bench," said Adam Hall, who scored the winning goal.
Crosby's leadership style doesn't rely much on words -- "He's not a cheerleader on the bench or in the locker room, really," Hall said -- but his actions before and during Game 3 delivered an unmistakable message to his co-workers.
"He might have said, 'This team's going on my shoulders. I'm the captain,' " defenseman Ryan Whitney said. "He really led us."
Mike (Doc) Emrick, one of the game's most-respected and knowledgeable play-by-play men, will receive the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award for his contribution to hockey broadcasting, while Canadian Press reporter Neil Stevens will receive the Elmer Ferguson Memorial Award for print journalism. Both honors are bestowed in connection with the Hockey Hall of Fame. ... NBC's broadcast of Game 3 earned a 2.8 overnight rating and a 5 share, the best overnight rating for a Game 3 since 2002. Pittsburgh led the way with a 33.1/47, followed by Detroit (18.2/28), Buffalo (6.2/9), Columbus (4.1/7) and Minneapolis (3.7/7). ... Talbot on teammate Gary Roberts: "You look at him after a goal or something, during the celebration, and you look in his eyes and you're kind of scared, you know like, 'Oh my God, that guy's intense.' " ... Neither team skated yesterday.
First Published May 30, 2008 12:00 am