Latest from Penguins-Canadiens series

May, 5, 2010

MONTREAL -- Here is what happens when you're Sidney Crosby and you go two straight games (and three out of four) without getting any points. You become a story even though you're still leading the postseason in scoring with 16 points.

"This is the playoffs. You want to create and produce, and that is important for sure," Crosby said Wednesday after recording just one shot on goal in Game 3's 2-0 victory. "I don't think you can ever overlook that. You have that responsibility to your team to do that. But, at the same time, you have other things you need to do, too."

He had just one shot in Game 2, a 3-1 Montreal win.

"We're playing against [Scott] Gomez and [Mike] Cammalleri and [Tomas] Plekanec and [Brian] Gionta -- some pretty offensive guys, too. There is still some responsibility defensively," Crosby said. "I think you have to work to create things, but you also have to be strong in other areas and still be able to contribute that way, too. One thing can't hurt the other. Hopefully, if you play solid in both ends of the ice, hopefully, offensively, things will take care of themselves."

As for the idea Montreal has somehow found a way to neutralize Crosby or get under his skin, the Habs weren't buying any of that.

"We're definitely not under his skin. I don't think you can rattle him. It's a compliment to him," Montreal forward Scott Gomez told reporters Wednesday. "Everyone talks about LeBron James living up to the hype. In our game, he's done it. We've heard about him since he was a kid, so you're not going to rattle him. He's gone through it all.

"He's the best player in the world," Gomez said. "Just as a team effort, we're trying to contain him. I don't think you can contain a guy like that. He's had a couple of good looks, good chances. You're not going to rattle him. Hopefully we'll keep playing good, tight D."

Speaking of Sid ...

Montreal coach Jacques Martin didn't go out of his way to dispel the feeling in some quarters (local media, some Montreal players) that Crosby receives special treatment from the officials and he perhaps sold the holding call on Hal Gill that led to the Penguins' winning goal in Game 3.

"It's not for me [to say]. The league handles those situations," Martin said. "You look at Crosby or superstars, do they get a different treatment? You guys see a lot of games. You have your own opinion and I think that's what's meaningful."

Was Martin asking if Crosby gets different treatment or saying it was so?

"I'm leaving it up to you," Martin said. "You probably have more of an influence on Gary [NHL commissioner Gary Bettman] than I do."

Will Guerin play?

It remains unclear whether Pittsburgh forward Bill Guerin will take the morning skate Thursday and whether he will be available for Game 4. He missed Game 3 with an undisclosed injury.

"We're going to stay undisclosed on what Bill is dealing with, but we are still seeing on how his day goes today, whether he is going to be skating tomorrow morning," Penguins coach Dan Bylsma said Wednesday.

Keep your chin up

One of the keys for the Canadiens will be trying not to let the disappointment of losing Game 3 seep into their preparation for what now looms as a crucial test in Game 4.

"They're the champs. It's not like you're going to rattle those guys. We don't look at it as a missed opportunity, it's over," said Gomez, who won two Stanley Cups in New Jersey. "You've got to let it go, and the next one's a big one. It's the playoffs, you can't toss and turn all night. It's the way it is."

Just how bad are things for Kostitsyn?

Well, Habs backup netminder Carey Price called out enigmatic Montreal forward Sergei Kostitsyn in the dressing room Tuesday morning for leaving the morning skate early. Then, Kostitsyn was once again a healthy scratch for Game 3, a game in which winger Mathieu Darche did not play one single shift. In short, Martin is telling the younger of the two Kostitsyn brothers he feels more confident playing a man short than dressing him. Ouch.

Martin would not discuss the issue.

"Those are internal matters," Martin said. "My policy is I never display that to the public. It's between him, I and the team."

Scott Burnside

ESPN Senior Writer



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