Flyers win wild Game 2 for 2-0 lead on Penguins; Claude Giroux sets playoff points record

Evgeni Malkin entered the series at the consensus regular-season MVP. Sidney Crosby entered the series still leading the conversation for best player in the world.

In Game 2 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinal, after a quiet performance in their Game 1 victory, Claude Giroux of the Philadelphia Flyers made his statement: Six points, a new Flyers franchise playoff record, in the Flyers' emphatic 8-5 victory to take a 2-0 series lead.

The Flyers are rolling. The Penguins are in trouble.

[ Related: Flyers rookie Sean Couturier talks like a teenager and plays like an old pro ]

Giroux had a hat trick, including an empty netter, and assisted on goals by Max Talbot, Jaromir Jagr (the game winner) and Sean Couturier, the Flyers rookie who also posted a hat trick. Giroux had a point on the Flyers' last three goals in the third period. He played 22:28 and finished with a plus-4.

It was a chaotic game, featuring maddeningly inconsistent goaltending by Marc-Andre Fleury and Ilya Bryzgalov.

Twice in the game, goals were answered in extremely short measure. In the second period, Claude Giroux scored a shorthanded goal — off a Sidney Crosby turnover — to tie the game at 3-3; six second later, Chris Kunitz converted on the power play to give the Penguins the lead again.

In the third period, Tyler Kennedy scored at 1:04 to give the Penguins a 5-4 lead; 17 seconds later, Couturier scored to tie it.

Then it was Jaromir Jagr, a Penguin for 11 years, scoring his first playoff goal in orange and black to give the Flyers a lead they would not relinquish, as Marc-Andre Fleury coughed up a rebound that Jagr buried. At 18:11 of the third, Couturier completed his hat trick.

For the Flyers, it's the best start to this Stanley Cup Playoff series imaginable: Up 2-0 going back to Philadelphia, showing zero intimidation or doubt that they can beat the Penguins.

For the Penguins, it's the worst start imaginable: Witnessing not only their defensive lapses carry over from the end of the regular season, but also Fleury's struggles. He was a liability in Game 2; that can't happen against the Flyers, or in a game where Bryzgalov gives up five goals.

The Flyers simply want it more: Outscoring the Penguins 7-1 in the third period and overtime in these two games. Along with that, they haven't allowed a point to Sidney Crosby outside of the first period.

Philadelphia is 17-0 after winning first two games of a playoff series.

The Penguins, picked by many to win the East in this tournament, is in dire need of a turnaround.

Other popular content on Yahoo! Sports:
Eric Adelson: Florida's playoff return ruined by slow start against New Jersey
The New Orleans Hornets' new owner would like to change the team's name 'tomorrow'
Big paychecks could lure top soccer players to play in Europe's most dangerous city