Sidney Crosby. Hat trick. That isn't going to help.
Except for a Kyle Turris power play goal, Crosby would have pulled off a natural hat trick as the Penguins jumped out to a 3-1 lead and a 4-3 win in Game 2.
With Alex Ovechkin out of the playoffs, Gary Bettman/NBC is thrilled with Sidney Crosby's success. And unfortunately for Ottawa, Crosby scores more often against the Senators in the playoffs than he does in the regular season.
Ottawa kept it close, especially after Robin Lehner entered the game in goal for the Sens. But close doesn't count in playoff hockey.
The NBC announcers, as one of their many themes, obsessed about Pittsburgh's inability to win the first 2 games in a series. Even if the Penguins win the series, winning the first 2 games isn't that big of a deal. But this felt more important to the NBC team than anyone watching at home, including those in Pittsburgh.
The Senators desperately miss Jason Spezza in this series, but the team is getting some good scoring from Colin Greening and Jean-Gabriel Pageau. They just need more offense than they have had to this point.
You get a sense that the Penguins have a distinct advantage in penalties in this series. This is especially bad for Ottawa, since Pittsburgh is really good on the power play.
The problem is that in watching the CBC and TSN announcers in the regular season and Round 1, I rely on them to tell me whether calls are good or bad. The NBC announcers really suffer in this area. They either know and won't tell us, or they aren't paying attention.
Rick Peckham is not a great play-by-play announcer. He might be "good enough" by U.S. standards for Round 1. But like the half of the teams that don't make it to Round 2, Peckham deserves an early vacation.
Great to see NBC bringing us all the playoff games, but they need to bring us better announcers that can handle the national spotlight.
Kenny Albert would qualify, but he isn't available until Game 4 in Ottawa. Right now, we'd take Dave Randorf over Rick Peckham. The ideal call would be to use someone like Ken Daniels (Detroit), but Daniels doesn't seem interested. NBC should make this a priority or start using Canadian CBC or TSN sim subs even in Round 2.
CBC has 4 main crews; NBC should have something close to that.
We hoped to see another Tim Hortons ad in Game 2, but perhaps the Game 1 airing was a fluke.
Seeing an ad for Tim Horton's in the United States is a bit unusual, given that most states don't have a Tim Hortons. Then again, Tim Hortons are more likely to be found in an area that appreciates hockey.
But the ad that ran on the NBC Sports Network ended with a call to own a Tim Hortons franchise. This sounded and felt like no other Tim Hortons ad we've seen outside Canadian television.
In the Pittsburgh arena, you see Tim Hortons on the boards, though that might be for the CBC telecast.