We deal with enough when we decide to travel. Booking flights and hostels. Finding nearby things to do. Packing. Trying to remember the ounce at which mouthwash becomes a domestic threat. The last thing we needed on the eve of our voyage west was to be called in for a rescue mission.
Luckily the Penguins pulled it together tonight and made us…proud isn’t the word. Relieved isn’t, either. Not for the team as a whole, at least. But rather than throwing around our “eh” feelings about their State of Being currently, let’s go ahead and apply “proud” and “relieved” to Paul*Mart for coming back and reminding us that once upon a time there was a game called hockey and It Was Good.
MOST TSK-TSK INDUCING
The game starts out just fine with Stempniak testing the waters with Pavelec and Postma and Wheeler checking in with MAF. Both goaltenders are present and accounted for, so things look good. If a goalie hasn’t wandered off into the mist of the jungle in the first five minutes, both teams are doing pretty well (first three minutes if there are any Finns involved.)
Jacob Trouba, who is a godddamn child – in the literal sense of his age being uncomfortably lower than our own, rather than in demeanor – goes for a puck behind his own net only to be met by the steel-plated body of Tanner Glass. Young Jacob struggles with some unfortunate side effects of the collision, seemingly focused in the face region, and Tanner Glass – while technically avoiding the boarding call – should be sent to the corner to Think About What He’s Done. We don’t need any near-boardings on humans still moping about their disappointing prom date.
A puck somehow manages to find its way directly into Paul Maurice’s forehead, leaving us all to scream WHERE THE FUCK IS PIERRE MCGUIRE WHEN THIS SHIT IS GOING ON. Now there’s a head that needs some vulcanized rubber careening towards it.
FAVORITE LITTLE BROTHER
BeauBeau draws a tripping penalty pretty expertly from Stuart. The followup is divine – we finally get some action from the powerplay when Sid get a pass to Bennett, who hits a one-timer right by Pavelec’s confused little body.
Also has anyone noticed that Beau kinda looks like your best friend’s little brother who was way into pop-punk and carried a skateboard everywhere despite not knowing how to do any more than an ollie? But then he grew up and started to make you feel uncomfortable with his deep voice and alluring stubble?
Think about it.
MOST DISTRACTED BY SHARING TRUE DETECTIVE THEORIES
Idk what the hell Scuderi and Bortuzzo were doing when the Jets decided to get lightning in their skates and take it MAF relentlessly, but they weren’t really helping.
LEAST REQUIRED ADDITIONAL DEFENSIVE WOES
The goal that gives the Jets the lead is one of immeasurable shittiness on the part of everyone in a Penguins uniform, save maybe Stempniak who at least managed a solid hit to try and derail the painful event. No dice.
Are we playing a bunch of webcomic characters? What is his face?
MOST SUDDENLY AND SHOCKINGLY ORGASMIC
The Pens hold the puck for a while in the Jets’ zone, giving our third and fourth lines a chance to show that they are Capable and Ready. It’s looking pretty good when Stempniak gets the puck to Adams and…wait…what?
Well holy goddamn shit. How about that.
MOST BEAUTIFUL PERFECT ANGEL
Having Paul Martin back on the team is good for just about everyone. The ripple effect of his simply existing on the team is magical. But, of course, sometimes magical just isn’t enough and he has to go make grovel with him to never be injured again. He nails home the feeling when he takes a pass from Neal and uses it to slap a one-timer right past Pavelec.
GOAL MOST LIKELY TO BE FROM ANOTHER DIMENSION
Out of thin air, Gibbons sees Trouba with the puck in the neutral zone and is like “thx I’ll have that” and just races into the zone, using poor lil Trouba as a screen, and jettisons the fucking puck into the net? What? Did that even happen? It’s unassisted and unquestioningly badass.
FUNNEST HORSEY RIDE EVER
You heard me.
Alt three stars can be divvied up amongst yourselves.
Okay, time to finish packing up. Hopefully we’ll be with you for the game on Saturday, though we may be in a more elevated mindset. Seriously. Check the elevation of Denver.
Can’t wait to talk to you from the road.