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Full Speed Ahead: Penguins Report Card vs. Avalanche

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Pittsburgh Penguins Matt Murray

There are some games which could fill a three thousand word column for their significance, artistry and tactical adjustments. And, there are others which can be summed up precisely with just a few adjectives. The Pittsburgh Penguins 4-3 OT win over the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center was about speed, an unrelenting need to win, and goaltending.

The Penguins and Colorado literally carved the ice on Friday night with a rare blend of speed and talent, and sometimes it reached a dizzying pace. Eventually, the Penguins goaltending bested the Colorado version.

For example, the final three minutes of the first period had 12 possession changes. The only stoppage was with only four seconds left in the period. The rapid possession changes were part of the problem for both teams. Neither really exerted sustained pressure or possession. The abundance of speed meant the other team could always counterattack.

“We knew how hard it would be here, especially against their first line,” Dominik Kahun said after his three-assist performance. “They’re unbelievable and we adjusted (well) in the second and third periods.”

Colorado did have a slight scoring chance advantage, and a slight high-danger scoring chance edge, but there were times when it felt like I was watching the game on fast-forward. I rewatched the game before the sun rose Saturday morning.

And, yep. It was even faster the second time.

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