Flyers aim for opening-round sweep over Penguins

By Dan Gelston

Associated Press

Published: Monday, April 16 2012 12:00 a.m. MDT

Giroux said the Flyers aren't worried about past history, nor do they care about Pittsburgh's rough-and-tumble style affecting their momentum.

"I think they're trying to get some hits, get in our heads," he said. "I think guys did a pretty good job of staying focused and not worrying about that kind of stuff, especially after the whistle, of just skating away."

Crosby couldn't help himself from post-whistle shenanigans in the first period when he twice jabbed goalie Ilya Bryzgalov's glove against the ice. Giroux, third in the NHL in points this season, shoved Crosby from behind. Crosby, clearly not caring about his history of concussions, retaliated by going after Giroux. Crosby then pushed aside Jakub Voracek's glove as the Flyers forward went to pick it up, setting off another skirmish.

Crosby was blunt when asked why he didn't just skate away from Voracek's glove.

"I don't like him. I don't like any guy on their team," he said after Game 3. "Guys are emotional and there's a lot of stuff going on out there. There's no reason to explain or sit here and say why I pushed a glove away. They're doing a lot of things out there, too. And you know what? We don't like each other. Was I going to sit there and pick up (Voracek's) glove for him? What was I supposed to do?"

Crosby could ignite the Penguins offense instead of starting scrums. The Penguins can't match the Flyers once the first period closing horn sounds.

Crosby's attempt at playing enforcer got a laugh out of the Flyers.

"I guess we've got to be doing something right if he hates us, right?" a smiling Giroux said.

The Flyers are doing plenty right offensively against a hapless defense. The Flyers are the first team to score eight-plus goals in two straight playoff games since Wayne Gretzky and the Los Angeles Kings did it against the Calgary Flames April 27 & 29, 1993, according to STATS LLC.

Oh, Hartnell, their top goal scorer, has yet to put the puck in the net.

The 158 penalty minutes, superstar-on-superstar dustup, 12 goals and a Hulk Hogan cameo made Game 3 one to remember.

Flyers coach Peter Laviolette wasn't sure it could be topped as an entertainment spectacle — not that it matters to him, as long as the Flyers win.

"I had a lot of texts, people just texting me saying it was one of the best games, if not the best game, they've ever seen," he said.

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