stayontheblack.com

Sport

Crosby, Penguins edge Blue Jackets 4-1 for 2-0 series lead

Crosby, Penguins edge Blue Jackets 4-1 for 2-0 series lead

Jaden Schwartz scored with 2:27 left during a disputed 4-on-4 situation and the Blues beat the Wild 2-1 on Friday night for a 2-0 lead in the first-round series.

Werenski returned in the third period and played several shifts, but the rookie defenseman had to leave the ice for the night when a swollen eye impaired his vision.

This game, and the momentum of the series, hinged on who had the last response in overtime.

Jeff Petry and Paul Byron also scored for Montreal, which wasted early leads of 1-0 and 2-1.

It's been a frustrating series for the Blue Jackets and Game 3 epitomized the difference between a young team, and one with much more playoff experience.

Jake Guentzel added a goal and an assist to help the defending Stanley Cup champions take a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven series.

So Tortorella may have a legitimate complaint as Werenski clearly was not in any shape to continue playing as blood poured down from his face.

The Penguins have the opportunity close out the series in Columbus on Tuesday.

The controversy surrounding the allowed-goal is that National Hockey League referees have the ability to stop the game if it's "obvious" a player has sustained a serious injury. Hard-hitting winger Zack Kassian has turned into a clutch goal-scorer in the playoffs with the game-winners in back-to-back contests to give Edmonton the lead in the series after dropping the opener in overtime. That is, until Sidney Crosby fed him for the game victor. Since Pittsburgh kept possession of the puck, officials didn't stop play, which led to Bryan Rust tying the game at three as Werenski spilled red on the ice on his way to the locker room. "That was far from our best game and we got a victory". Of course, this has not worked at all, as through three games the Crosby line has totaled 11 points.

"When you're down pretty quick and the building is rocking, we just had to regroup", Crosby said, "and we showed a lot of poise coming back". The first goal that Sergei Bobrovsky gave up last night is the type of goal that Fleury has given up in the past.

All of the above is bad enough for both Werenski and the Blue Jackets, but a picture of the aftermath really drives home how painful the sequence above was. "I feel like we've got to do a better job at spreading them out". The focus has been more on the players than him, which is the way he wants it. Hockey players are a different breed of human. Charlie Coyle and Scottie Upshall were sent to the penalty box for dual roughing penalties, triggering the 4-on-4 and increasing the Wild's night-long frustration with the officiating crew.

"They're not going to go away", Blues coach Mike Yeo said.