Archive for the ‘Pittsburgh Penguins’ Category

-Never touched on my thoughts about the Flyers/Lightning 1-3-1 debate.  Neither team broke any rules, and it was a one game issue.  It was a boring game but I don’t think any rules need to be added or changed in response to one occasion.

-Reports are floating around that Jeff Carter wants out of Columbus.  Carter’s agent shot down those rumors, but the internet can’t help but wonder if he’ll be dealt anyway.  Carter played on the 2006-07 disastrous Flyers team, but even with that experience, going from a Stanley Cup contender to the worst team in hockey is still a shock.  It’s been a bad six weeks for the Jackets, especially for Carter who has missed 10 games with an injury and still doesn’t have a goal.  He does have a no-trade clause starting in the summer, but Carter just  needs to focus on hockey, winning games and perhaps better play will help turn Columbus around a bit.  Even if he were traded, Columbus wouldn’t get the return they traded to get him (Jakub Voracek, 1st round pick and a 3rd round pick). (more…)

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Here are some random news and notes from around The NHL :

– The Boston Bruins ran over Ryan Miller and The Sabres (Literally) for their 5th straight win in a so far perfect November.

-Max Pacioretty of The Montreal Canadiens, talk about a comeback! 3 goals in 4 games, leading the team in Goals (7) and Shots On Goal (61)

-The Columbus Blue Jackets welcomed Nikita Nikitin to the team with 24:57 of ice time, he had 1 assist, Steve Mason had 35 saves, and rookie Ryan Johansen had 2 goals in a 2-1 win over Winnipeg.

– The St.Louis Blues welcomed Kris Russell, who scored the gamewinner in a 3-0 shutout over Tampa Bay. Brian Elliot made 19 saves in the effort.

-The Detroit Red Wings are back on track, winning 4 straight games with last night’s grilling of Dallas 5-2, Jimmy Howard is on fire, making at least 22 saves each game in that 4 game span that included 2 shutouts.

– The Pittsburgh Penguins are still on top of the world in the east (tied for best in NHL) even after last night’s  loss at the hands of Carolina. “Crosby? Crosby!? We don’t need no stinkin’ Crosby!”

– The Blackhawks are tops in the west (also tied for best in NHL) with the usual suspects (Kane,Hossa,Sharp,Toews) leading the way.

-Martin Brodeur became the leader in most regular season losses with 353 (surpassing Curtis Joseph and Gump Worsley). Hey, if you are going to have the most wins, why not have the most losses as well?

After seeing the Blue Jackets’ stumble out of the gates to start the season turn into an out of control spiral rivaling a five-year old drawing with a crayon, I thought to myself that I have seen this fish before. I hearken back to the NHL’s return from the lockout and how the season had started for the Penguins and see some similarities in the 2-9-1 start for the Blue Jackets.

After the Penguins won the draft lottery and the right to draft Sidney Crosby, the Penguins decided to spend rather freely after years of running the franchise like a business and kept their salary low and their roster young. Suddenly big dollars were spent bringing in Sergei Gonchar, Ziggy Palffy, John LeClair, and Jocelyn Thibault (Mark Recchi was signed before the lockout occurred).  Somewhat similar to the Blue Jackets’ aggressive offseason that seen James Wisniewski, Jeff Carter, Vinny Prospal, and Radek Martinek enter the fold.

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Last night in a fight, the Penguins’ Arron Asham KO’d the Capitals’ Jay Beagle.  The fight started when Beagle was mixing it up with Pittsburgh defenseman Kris Letang, and Asham came to his teammates’ aid.  Asham caught Beagle on the jaw with two straight rights, and Beagle went down.  As he was lead to the penalty box, Asham signaled “he’s out” and a “go to sleep” motion, in which many fans considered taunting.

Video can be seen here.

After he realized Beagle was hurt, Asham gave him a stick tap from the penalty box.  Asham said that he was pumped up and tried to get the crowd as well as his team going.  He also added that he thought the “stuff afterward was uncalled for” and he takes full responsibility for it.

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Last season: 49-25-8, 106 points, 4th East, lost in the first round to Tampa Bay (4-3).

Additions: LW Steve MacIntyre, D Alex Picard, RW Steve Sullivan, D Boris Valabik, RW Jason Williams

Losses: LW Chris Conner, RW Eric Godard, LW Mike Rupp, C Max Talbot

Offense:  Obviously Sidney Crosby is the go-to guy on the Penguins, but with his status uncertain for the season, it means other players will have to pick up the slack.  Crosby was having a great year before he was derailed, scoring 32 goals and 66 points in 41 games.  Evgeni Malkin missed 39 games last year, including 29 games (plus playoffs) with an ACL tear.  While he was in the lineup, Malkin was still effective, netting 15 goals and 37 points.  The Pens will need him to be healthy this season in order to compete in the tough Eastern Conference.  Jordan Staal missed the first half of the season, but was the team’s #1 centerman down the stretch.  His shutdown play helped ease the losses of Crosby & Malkin.  Chris Kunitz finally produced (23 goals) what Pittsburgh wanted when they acquired him from Anaheim two seasons ago.  Last year’s acquisition James Neal only scored one goal as a Penguin, but had 22 total, including his time with Dallas.  Tyler Kennedy used his increased ice time to score 21 goals.  Steve Sullivan could prove to be a solid addition, provided he stays healthy he can still score 20 goals.  Rookie Mark Letestu started off hot, scoring 7 goals and 17 points in his first 38 games, but only finished 14-13-27 in 64 games.

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Jagr’s Heel Turn

Posted: August 31, 2011 by JoeyD in NHL, Philadelphia Flyers, Pittsburgh Penguins
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Yesterday Broad Street Hockey posted quite a few juicy quotes from a Czech interview with Jaromir Jagr sure to rile up some Penguins fans. All in all I wasn’t too ticked off with anything Jagr said although there was many logic fails that I wish to address regardless of how language translations may lose intended meanings.

 “It just doesn’t make sense to me. I didn’t expect their fans to see it like this. For two reasons. First of all, I didn’t expect them to want me to sign in Pittsburgh so much to begin with, because the last eight years in the NHL, they booed at me whenever I went there. And those same fans suddenly wanted me to return. It’s a bit strange. It was a huge surprise to me.”

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I Understand, I Just Don’t Agree

Posted: August 24, 2011 by JoeyD in NHL, Pittsburgh Penguins
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Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune Review wrote a piece about a tough season for Matt Cooke of the Penguins that went far beyond just his play on the ice.  Cooke’s wife Michelle had a potentially life-threatening situation shortly after the Winter Classic coupled with egregious mistakes on the ice that lead to multiple suspensions made for quite the difficult year to date for the Penguins right winger.

Thus far, the litany of comments in response to the article have been expectantly mixed with both the pro and con opinions coming as no surprise.  In regards to the types of comments that are more negative or those with a general malaise; I understand, I just don’t agree.

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