Friday, September 30, 2011

GAMEDAY. Pens vs Blackhawks

United Center.  8:30 p.m.
Game will be televised on NHL Network
Or you could listen to it on 105.9 The X

Lineups
Penguins line up via Penguins.nhl.com

Sullivan-Malkin-Neal
Dupuis-Staal-Kennedy
Cooke-Letestu-Asham
MacIntyre-Vitale-Adams

Martin-Michalek
Strait-Letang
Morrow-Engelland

Johnson 
Fleury

Blackhawks player playing tonight via Blackhawks.nhl.com
Carcillo
Brunette
Kruger
Towes
Mayers
Bickell
Pirri
Saad
Frolik
Hossa
Oles
Kane

Keith
Hjalmarsson
Montador
O'Donnell
Seabrook
Leddy

Emrey
Salak

Both team are sending out was looks close to a real line up.  Regular season hockey is close and it feels amazing.  Last time the Pens and Hawks played this pre season the Pens won 4-1.  Ray Emrey Sucks.  Dan Carcillo sucks.

Go Pens.



Preview: Western Conference

It's 6 days til the start of the regular season and what better way to get your mind right by a conference preview.  Today we'll be previewing the Western Conference.  We really don't know much about the Western Conference basically because we could care less and the Pens are in the Eastern Conference.  We'll be starting at who we feel is going to finish last in the conference and work our way up to who we think will win the conference.

15th Edmonton Oilers.  

  Last Season Finish
The Oilers finished 15th in the Western Conference last year and we have no reason to believe that's going to change this season.
Key Additions
Andy Sutton
 Eric Belanger
 Ben Eager
 Darcy Hordichuk

Key Subtractions
Andrew Cogliano

The Oilers didn't lose many players from last season but the biggest name the acquired in the off season was Andy Sutton.  Good luck getting out of the cellar with him on defense.

Strengths
Talent.  There is no shortage of talent on this Oilers team especially at the forward position.  They just have to figure out how to use it.

Weaknesses
Defense.  When your top 2 defensemen are Andy Sutton and Ryan Whitney you know your going to have a problem.  

14th Calgary Flames

Last Season Finish 
The Flames finished 10th in the Western Conference last season.  No clue how this team finished 10th last season.  No way we think they'll do it again
Key Additions
Scott Hannan
Lee Stempniak

Key Subtractions
Daymond Langkow

Strengths
Forwards.  The Flames have a lot of people on their team that can score.  Will they is the question.  Olli Jokenin isn't getting any younger the last time i checked.

Weaknesses
Defense.  The Flames have Jay Bouwmeester and who else?  Scott Hannan?  Still no word on if he showed up for Washington last season.  And quite frankly Jay Bouwmeester sucks.  Kiprusoff is going to be forced to steal games for this team this season.

13th St. Louis Blues

Last Season Finish
Last season the Blues finished 11th.  No clue how they pulled that off and no chance they do it again.

Key Additions
Jason Arnott
Jaime Langenbrunner
To bad they're like 1oo
Oh they also added Brian Elliot

Key Subtractions
Ty Conklin

Strengths
Forwards and Goal tending.  The Blues have a decent number of forwards who can put the puck in the net.  Will the do it on a consistent basis is the only issue with them.  The Blues also have solid goal tending.  Last season they had Jaroslav Halak and Ty Conklin.  Probably not a better 1, 2 combination in the league last season.  This year Brian Elliot will back up Jaroslav Halak.  Elliot is a former start who could be a decent back up to Halak.

Weaknesses
Defense.  Lat season the Blues traded away Erik Johnson.  Props if you can name 4 defensemen on this team now.

12th Colorado Avalanche
Last Season Finish
Last season the Avs finished 14th.  They have the talent to be a lot better this season.

Key Additions
Jean-Sebastien Giguere
Semyon Varlamov
Shane O'Brien.

Key Subtractions
Brian Elliot
Thomas Fleischmann
Peter Budaj

Strengths
Goal tending.  The Avs traded for Semyon Varlamov in the off season and signed Jean-Sebastien Gigure.  That is definitely a good 1, 2 combination in goal.  This team is also very deep offensively.  

Weaknesses
Defense.  The Avs traded for Erik Johnson last season and signed Shane O'Brien in the off season.  Other than that their defense is awful

11th Columbus Blue Jackets
Last Season Finish
Last season the Blue Jackets finished 13th.  They were playing pretty good hockey for until the got completely embarrassed by The Penguins and their fans.  (See Columbus Invasion)  The Pens don't go to Columbus this season so Columbus should be alright.  Might even make the playoffs.  But we think 11th.  

Key Additions
James Wismiewski
Vinny Prospal
Jeff Carter

Key Subtractions
Jakub Voracek
Chris Clark
Mathieu Garon
Ethan Moreau
Craig Rivet 
Scottie Upshall
Sami Lepisto

Strengths
Forwards.  The Jackets are probably one of the deeper teams at forward.  They have a ton of talent but will the actually use it?

Weaknesses
Defense.  When your best defenseman is Fedor Tyutin and you have suspension prone James Wisniewski you know you're in trouble.

10th Minnesota Wild
Last season finish
Last season the Wild finished 12th.  They kept the Stars out of the playoffs last season so that something right?  
Key Additions
Dany Heatly (Dick)
Devin Steoguchi

Key Subtractions
Jose Theodore
John Madden
Chuck Kobasew 
Andrew Brunette
Martin Havlat

Strengths
Forwards.  Unlimited talent up front for the Wild.  Koivu, Setoguchi, Heatly could put up huge number.  Dany Heatly sucks.  

Weaknesses
Defense.  If you can name a defenseman other than Marek Zidlicky you deserve a medal.

9th Phoenix Coyotes
 Last Season Finish
Last season the Coyotes finished 6th in the West but got swept by the Red Wings in the first round of the playoffs.  No way that happens this season.  They lost to much in the off season.

Key Additions
Radim Vrbata
Raffi Torres
Mike Smith
Daymond Langkow

Key Subtractions
Ilya Bryzgalov
Alexandre Picard
Petr Prucha
Eric Belanger
Ed Jovanovski
Lee Stempniak

Strengths
Forwards.  The Coyotes have a ton of talent at the forward position.  Will they be able to use that talent and actually decide to score?  Plus who's gonna get their forward the puck?

Weaknesses
Defense and goal tending.  No clue who's gonna be playing defense for the Coyotes this season.  Plus the lost Ilya Bryzgalov to the Flyers in the off season and they replace him with...Mike Smith.  Yeah good luck with that one.

8th Dallas Stars
Last Season Finish
Last season the Stars finished 9th.  They were knocked out of the playoffs on the last day of the season by the Minnesota Wild.  We think the Stars will be back in the playoffs this season.

Key Additions
Sheldon Souray
Radek Dovorak
Michael Ryder

Key Subtractions
Jason Williams
Brad Richards
Jamie Langenbrunner

Strengths
Defense.  Last season the Stars dumped Matt Niskanen automatically making their defense better.  Plus they have some very good young talent on the blue line.

Weaknesses
Forwards.  After Brenden Morrow the Stars don't have very much depth at forward.  No clue how this team expects to score goals.

7th Chicago Blackhawks
Last Season Finish
Last season the Chicago Blackhawks finished 8th.  They squeaked into the playoffs on the last day of the season when the Minnesota Wild beat the Stars.

Key Additions
Sami Lepisto
Andrew Brunette
Rostislav Olez
Steve Motador

Dan Carcillo sucks so there's no way he's making that list.

Key Subtractions
Brain Campbell
Troy Brouwer
Tomas Kopecky
Marty Turco
Fernando Pisani
Chris Campoli

Strengths
Forwards and defense.  The Blackhawks have as much talent as anyone at the forward position.  With Towes, Sharp, Olesz, Kane, Hossa, Frolik, Bolland, and Brunette this team will score some goals and be hard to stop.  Their defense is strong too.  The defense is anchored by Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook and the additions of Montador and Lepisto it's going to be hard to do anything against them.

Weaknesses
Goal tending.  The only thing that might let the Hawks down this season is their goaltending.  Corey Crawford is a decent starting goalie but has yet to prove himself in the NHL.  Crawford's back up...Alexander Salak.  If you say you didn't say who after that you're lying.  The also brought in Ray Emrey.  Good luck with that one.

6th Nashville Predators
Last Season Finish
Last season the Predators finished 5th.  Probably would have finished close to there this season but a couple other teams got better.

Key Additions
Niclas Bergfors
Sergei Kostitsyn

Key Subtractions
Joel Ward 
Steve Sullivan
Shane O'Brien
Marcel Goc
Matthew Lombardi

Strengths
Defense.  Shea Weber and Ryan Suter are very solid defensemen.  They are gonna be the anchor back their for Nashville this season with a solid supporting cast.  Its always nice to have Pekka Rinne in goal as well

Weaknesses
Scoring.  No clue how this team is gonna score goals.  Niclas Bergfors only scores against the Penguins and who else on that team is gonna score.  Mike Underwood, I mean Fisher?

5th Los Angeles Kings
Last Season Finish
Last season the Kings finished 7th.  The Kings are one of the up and coming teams in the NHL.  They have all sorts of talent at every position.  The could even finish higher than 5th but they're in a division with the Ducks and Sharks.
Key Additions
Ethan Moreau
Simon Gagne
Mike Richards

Trent Hunter was given a tryout by the Kings and could possibly make the roster and be a good addition to this Kings team.

Key Subtractions
Wayne Simmonds
Ryan Smyth
Michael Handzus
Alexi Ponikarovsky

Strengths
Forwards and defense.  LA has unlimited talent at forward.  This is probably one of the deeper teams at the forwards position in the NHL.  It will be hard to find a deeper team in the league.  Also their defense is probably one of the most solid in the league.

Weaknesses
Goal tending and Drew Doughty,  The only weakness for the Kings is their goal tending.  Don't get me wrong their goalies are good but can they be consistent.  Both goalies are gonna need to prove themselves as consistent goalies this season. Drew Doughty finally signed.  probably won't be a distraction now. But is a defenseman really worth 7 million dollars per year?  Yikes.

4th Anaheim Ducks
Last Season Finish
Last season the Ducks finished 4th in the West and we think that's where they will finish again this season.  This is another team in the West that is loaded with talent.  Could finish better than 4th this year.

Key Additions
Andrew Cogliano

Key Subtractions
Andy Sutton

Losing Andy Sutton isn't that big of a deal though.

Strengths
Forwards and defense.  The Ducks have so much talent at forward position.  With Getzlaf, Perry, and Ryan on one line and Temmu Selanne coming back this season and their supporting cast this team will put up some points.
Remember this?
What a goal.  Love watching it.
The Ducks are also very talented defensively.  They are very young on the blue line and are only going to get better.

Weaknesses
Goal tending.  The Ducks have good goal tending.  The only thing they will have to worry about is Jonas Hiller's health.  When he is completely healthy is is one of the best goalies in the NHL.  Probably the only reason they lost to Nashville last season was the face they had Ray Emrey in goal.

Still miss these logos.

3rd Detroit Red Wings
Last Season Finish
Last season the Wings finished 3rd.  The Wings division sucks so they're gonna win it every year.  The Predators will eventually challenge the Wings for the division but it's not going to be this season.  

Key Additions
Mike Commodore
Ian White
Ty Conklin
Fabian Brunnstrom was brought to to Wings on a tryout.  Probably gonna make the team.

Key Subtractions
Chris Osgood
Kris Draper
Both of those jokes finally retire.  Chris Osgood is probably going to dive his way into the hall of fame.  Rumor has it that Kris Draper cried because someone didn't shake his hand at his retirement speech.  Sidney Crosby wasn't available for comment.

Strengths
Forwards and defense.  We don't need to tell you the Wings are good offensively and defensively.  Pens/Wings has become a rivalry over the past few years.  You know who they have and how good they are.

Weaknesses
Goal tending.  Chris Osgood retire but who cares he sucked.  The Wings goalie now is Jimmy Howard.  If you think he's a legitimate goalie then you need to re evaluate yourself.  The Wings back up is Joey McDonald.  Good luck with those jokes.

2nd San Jose Sharks
Last Season Finish
Last season the Sharks finished 2nd in the West.  The Sharks always have one of the most talented line ups in the NHL but always seem to fizzle out late in the season and can never seem to get to the Stanley Cup.

Key Additions
Colin White
Michael Handzus
Martin Havlat 
Brent Burns

Key Subtractions
Devin Steoguchi
Ian White
Kyle Wellwood
Niclas Wallin
Dany Heatly

Strengths
Forwards.  The Sharks have one of the most talented group of forwards in the NHL.  Every year they are always putting up big numbers.  Will they produce as much without Heatly?  Martin Havlat is no Dany Heatly.  

Weaknesses
Defense and goal tending.  The Sharks don't have a bad defense or goal tending but it always seems to let them down.  Every year they rack up win after win after win in the regular season but in the post season something happens to the Sharks were they can't play defense and their goalies can't stop anything.  

1st Vancouver Canucks
Last Season Finish
Last season the Canucks finished 1st in the West.  They went to the Stanley Cup Finals but lost in 7 games to the Boston Bruins in 7 games.  

Key Additions
Chris Higgins
Marco Sturm

Key Subtractions
Jeff Tambellini
Raffi Torres
Christian Ehrhoff

Strengths
Forwards and goal tending.  The Canucks have unlimited talent up front and they added to it in the off season by adding Marco Sturm.  It also helps to have Roberto Luango in goal who is always solid.

Weaknesses
Defense.  The Canucks defensemen aren't bad but last year their defense let them down in the playoffs.  Not to mention Luango seems to find a way to fail in the playoffs as well.  

So there you have it.  From 15 to number 1.  
Season starts in like 7 minutes.  Get your mind right.

Go Pens.







Wednesday, September 28, 2011

RECAP. Shootout in KC. Pens WIN

The Pens took on the Kings in Kansas City last night in pre season game number 4.

The Kings took the lead in the first period when Jarret Stoll scored to make it 1-0.  Matt Niskanen almost scored on Fleury somewhere in the period.  Nothing happened in the second period but in the third period the Pens came back and tied it when Deryk Engelland scored to make it 1-1.  The Kings killed off a 5 on 3 late in the period but soon after they killed it Chris Kunitz gave the Pens a 2 to 1 lead.  But the lead wouldn't last because the Kings would tie it at 2 on the power play.  The game would go to overtime and Mike Richards being the great leader he is would take a penalty late in overtime.  The Pens couldn't do anything with the brief power play and the game went to a shootout.  Malkin gave the Pens the lead early in the shootout but Jarret Stoll tied it on the Kings final shot.  The shootout would last 8 rounds and Matt Niskanen, yes Matt Niskanen scored to win the game for the Pens 3-2

Pens next game is Friday at 8:30 against The Chicago Blackhawks man.

Go Pens

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Gameday - Pens vs Kings in Kansas City

Sprint Center - Kansas City, Missouri
8:00 p.m.
This game is radio only - 105.9 the X or the Pens website
(If we have to tell you how to get to the Pens website, you shouldn't be on the internet)

It is hard to believe that just about 5 years ago, the team called the Kansas City Penguins was a very real possibility.  We aren't going to sit here and tell you everything that has transpired since then, but if you want to know, check out this post from 2007 on thePensblog.

We all owe him.

As much as we'd like to put that talk behind us, it is likely that this game is a test of the market, despite what the NHL says.  Mike Richards probably exercised his mystical leadership powers to make this happen.

The fact that this photo existed on my hard drive is as vomit inducing as a Nancy Grace wardrobe malfunction.

Certainly the Pens and Kings aren't involved in potentially moving.  There is talk of the possibly moving one of the Sunbelt teams in the near future.  It is a sad day for fans when a team moves, although the Kansas City Islanders would be a fun name.

Garbage Franchise
From the Pens website:

Penguins Players Dressing:

Tangradi-Malkin-Neal
Kunitz-Staal-Kennedy
Park-Letestu-N.Johnson
MacIntyre-Vitale-Adams

Lovejoy-Niskanen
Martin-Morrow/Engelland
Strait-Harrington

MAF

Tangradi, Vitale, MacIntyre, Engelland, Lovejoy, Morrow, and Niskanen are players to watch listen to Mike Lange and Phil Bourque talk about.

LA Kings

Forwards

10 Mike Richards
13 Kyle Clifford
14 Justin Williams
17 Ethan Moreau
22 Trevor Lewis
23 Dustin Brown
25 Dustin Penner
28 Jarret Stoll
47 Trent Hunter
48 Andrei Loktionov
71 Jordan Nolan
74 Dwight King

Defensemen
2 Matt Greene
3 Jack Johnson
7 Rob Scuderi
27 Alec Martinez
44 Davis Drewiske
76 Slava Voynov

Goaltenders
32 Jonathan Quick
45 Jonathan Bernier

Not gonna lie.  We miss Scuds.

Go Pens

Sunday, September 25, 2011

RECAP. The Power play? Pens WIN

The Minnesota Wild were in town for pre season game number 3.  The Pens filled the arena with a bunch of kids from local youth hockey organizations.
The Pens won the game 4-1 with the help of power play goals from Joe Morrow, Pascal Dupuis, Brian Strait,and Evgeni Malkin.
Matt Cooke hit some joke during the game.  The guys dove into the boards and people are calling for a Cooke suspension.  Get real.  No word if Dany Healty was caught speeding through Pittsburgh yesterday.

Pens next game is Tuesday at 8 p.m. against the LA Kings.  That game will be played in Kansas City.  How Mario goes to the game and tells Kansas City to suck it.

Regular season starts in 11 days.

Go Pens

Friday, September 23, 2011

RECAP. Yawn. Pens WIN

Chicago was in town for pre season game number two last night and quite frankly I've watched my dog take a more exciting piss than the first two periods were last night.

1st Period
Brandon Saad is from Pittsburgh.  We only heard about that 84935270346 times last night.  CFA got the first good scoring chance of the game for either team about 5 minutes into the game.

That's probably what you heard for most of the period.  Chicago's only real scoring chance came when Johnny tried clearing the puck but it went straight to Brain Bickel who threw it at an empty net but Johnny got back and knocked the shot away with his stick.  The Pens got a power play late in the period when Brandon Saad, who's from Pittsburgh in case you didn't know, hit someone on an icing.  The Pens power play got nothing.  Cooke high sticked someone but the Hawks couldn't get anything on the power play.  Then Brian Strat got a chance with a few second left in the period but couldn't score.

2nd Period
The 2nd period was more of the first.  Not much happened.  Adams had a chance in close but was denied.  The Staal had a couple chances but couldn't score.  Then Frolik came down the wing and cut to the middle of the ice and shot one 5-hole on Johnny to make it 1-0 Hawks.  I think 3 people noticed he actually scored.  Ray Emrey then entered the game for Chicago.  
  
Someone had a chance on a wrap around a little later in the period.  It was so hard to keep my attention on this game.  Pens had a power play late but couldn't score.

3rd Period
Pens switched goalies to start the period.  Scott Munroe replaced Johnny.  The scoring got started early in the 3rd when Jordan Staal stuffed home a rebound off of a Kennedy shot just 2 minutes in to tie the game at 1.  Then the Pens had another power play but couldn't do anything with it.  Steve MacIntyre threw someone during the 3rd.  Literally.  Then both team finally figured out they were actually playing a hockey game.  Both teams were getting a bunch of chances but then CFA through a backhand shot to the net and Matt Cooke in his first game back since missing the end of last season due to suspension, tipped the puck past Emrey to make it 2-1 Pens.  Tangradi had a chance in close after that but Emrey actually made a save.  Then late in the period TK found a rebound and put it in the back of the net to make it 3-1 Pens.  Michalek Island actually had a turnover someone but the Hawks couldn't do anything with it.  Then again their most recognizable name on the ice last night was Dan Carcillo so it's surprising they even got one goal.  Staal almost stuffed a rebound in but Emrey made a big save.  Another rarity.  Then the Hawks pulled Emrey but he had to return briefly and when he did Staal came in and undressed Emrey to make it 4-1 Pens.  That would be the last goal of the game and the Pens win 4-1.

3 Stars
1. Jordan Staal
2. Matt Cooke
3. Tyler Kennedy

Pens next game is Saturday against the Minnesota Wild at 3 p.m


Thursday, September 22, 2011

Preason Game 2 - Blackhawk vs. Penguins

7:00 P.M.
ROOT Sports and NHL Network
We assume the game will be on 105.9 FM for radio listeners, or if you get sick of Steigy.

It's a Hockey Night in Pittsburgh!  

The Pens come into tonight's game with a 1-0 preseason record, which means absolutely nothing.  The team looked good last night against Detroit and looks to continue improving tonight.

The following are dressing for the Pens (from Empty Netters):

Forwards:
Mark Letestu, Jordan Staal, Jason Williams, Matt Cooke, Eric Tangradi, Craig Adams, Nick Johnson, Steve MacIntyre, Keven Veilleux, Tyler Kennedy, Zach Sill, Bryan Lerg

Defensemen
Zbynek Michalek, Deryk Engelland, Ben Lovejoy, Brian Strait, Alexandre Picard, Scott Harrington

Goalies
Brent Johnson, Scott Munroe

Names to watch include Tangradi, Johnson, Veilleux, Williams, Engelland, Lovejoy, and Picard.
We have no idea on lines other than Brent Johnson will probably start.  We also assume lines will change during the game, since it is preseason.
 
Steve Sullivan is out with a groin injury, and Simon Despres was sent to WBS

Dressing for Chicago:

Forwards
Daniel Carcillo, Brett McLean, Bryan Bickell, Brandon Pirri, Brandon Saad, Christopher DiDomenico, Brandon Bollig, Bryon Frose, Rob Klinkhammer, Andrew Shaw, Michael Frolik, Peter Leblanc

Defensemen
Sean O'Donnell, Nick Leddy, John Scott, Shawn Lalonde, Joe Lavin, Brian Connelly

Goalies
Ray Emery, Alexander Salak

Chicago is apparently icing an AHL team tonight.  No clue who these dudes are.

Quick thoughts:
-Good to see Staal healthy 
-Munroe is probably going to be WBS backup goalie
-Some roster cuts were made today

Go Pens

RECAP. Finally! Pens WIN

Finally.  The Penguins finally dropped the puck on the pre-season last night.  After one of the worst off season's in NHL history and a longer one than Penguins fans are use too the puck finally dropped.  Even if it was a meaningless pre-season game, it meant hockey was back.

ROOT Sports started the season off with a Malkin interview before the game.  But then ROOT Sports reminded you why they are such a joke.  Steigy was talking about all off the players who had passed away during the off-season and mentioned there was going to be a tribute in the arena.  Well instead of showing the tribute ROOT Sports cut away from tribute and went right to a commercial for....EDGAR SNYDER!  Come on.Anyway....

1st Period
The Detroit Red Wings presented by Amway were in town for the first pre-season game of the season and were getting the better chances early.  Dupuis broke up a chance the Wings had early.  Then the Wings got a power play after Geoff Walker boarded someone.  The Pens killed off the Wings power play.  Richard Park had his balls in everyone's mouth.  The Pens almost had a 3 on 1 break going into the Wings zone but Malkin went off sides.  Later Dan Cleary blew past Matt Niskanen and had a good scoring chance but Fleury made a pad save to keep the score tied at 0.  Malkin then forced a turnover in the Wings zone and fed Kunitz with a pass and he buried it to make it 1-0 Pens.  On the ensuing face off Ryan Craig was almost in on a breakaway but it was broken up.  Hudler it the post a little late but the Datsyuk found Kronwall and he ripped a shot top shelf passed Fleury to tie it at one.  After the goal this happened :
Whatever.  After the goal the Pens controlled play for the rest of the period.  Howard had to make a big save on Colin McDonald, Dupuis missed the goal on a backhand after a nice pass from Asham, and Letang hit a post after Malkin danced trough everyone.  Malkin was on PCP last night.

2nd Period
Dan Cleary starts off the period by getting a chance early but he whiffed on it because he sucks.  Matt Niskanen even had a shot on goal early in the period believe it or not.  A little later Fleury made a sweet kick save on Drew Miller.  The more impressive part was that Drew Miller was in a position to almost score.  For some reason Steigy started talking about 2 lions eating a hippopotamus.  Geoff Walker had a chance in close later in the period after he tried to center the puck but the puck bounced off someones body but Walkers shot hit off the side of the net.  Then Letang and Gibbons had a few chance in front but Howard kept them out.  Then Chirs Conner came in to the Pens zone but Joe Morrow stuffed him and the Pens went the other way.  Morrow hit Asham with a sweet pass and Asham was in on a breakaway but Howard robbed him.  After his first goal Kronwall thought he was some kind of sniper but Fleury flashed the glove on him.  Then half way through the 2nd Malkin stuck his Conn Smythe ball in Howards mouth when he got the puck and powered down the right wing, faked like he was gonna go behind Howard, the flipped the puck over Howard's shoulder and into the goal to make it 2-1 Pens.
Long time Red Wings fan Perry Cox had no clue what to do.
A little over 3 minutes later the Pens had a power play.  Howard robbed Kunitz early in the power play.  Then Matt Niskanen shot a one timer from the point and the puck found its way through to make it 3-1 Pens. Read that again.  Matt Niskanen scored, and it was on the power play.  Yep.  Pens had a 2 on 1 late in the period but Howard made a save.  Pens had another power play but couldn't get anything going.  Cleary tried a wrap around on Fleury late in the period but Fleury kept it out.

3rd Period
Brad Thiessen came into the game to replace Fleury in the 3rd.  Joey McDonlolololod came into play the 3rd for Detroit.  Sneep went off early in the period for high sticking.  Joe Vitale had a chance short handed but McDonlololod saved it.  Thiessen then had to make 3 or 4 save on the Wings after Niskanen was interfered with in front.  The Pens killed off the rest of the penalty.  A few second later though a shot came in from the point and found its way past Thiessen and hit the post then bounced off of Thiessen and into the net to make it 3-2 Pens.  Apparently Jiri Hudler tipped it in because he got credit for the goal.  Later in the period a shot trickled through Thiessen but the puck bounced wide of the goal.  Later in the period the Penguins got a 5 minute power play after Dan Cleary checked Phillip Sammuelsson from behind into the boards.  Dan Cleary is a dick.  The Pens couldn't get much going on the power play.  Then near the end of the power play James Neal took a penalty to cancel out the rest of the Pens power play.  On the Wings power play Fabian Brunstrom whiffed on a breakaway after he tried the Forsberg move but then he remembered he was Fabian Brunstrom and missed.  Martin took a penalty to give the Wings a 5 on 3 power play.  Dupuis was flying around every where killing the penalty.  The Wings then pulled McDonolololod to try to tie the game but they couldn't and the Pens held on to grab a 3-2 win.

3 Stars
1. Evgeni Malkin
2. Joe Morrow
3. Pavel Datsyuk

Pens play the Blackhawks in like 3 minutes.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Preview - Preseason Game 1 - Red Wings at Penguins

7:00 P.M.
ROOT Sports and NHL Network
We assume the game will be on 105.9 FM for radio listeners, or if you get sick of Steigy.

It's a Hockey Night in Pittsburgh!  

It feels great to hear those words again.  After the disaster that was the second half of last season and the disappointing early playoff exit against Tampa Bay, the Pens look to take care of some unfinished business this season.  We really don't know what to say about the first exhibition game, other than there will be quite a few position battles, notably the 11-14th forwards and the 5th-8th defenseman.

The following are dressing for the Pens (from Empty Netters):

Forwards:
Pascal Dupuis, Richard Park, Chris Kunitz, James Neal, Ryan Craig, Colin McDonald, Arron Asham, Joe Vitale, Paul Thompson, Brian Gibbons, Geoff Walker, Evgeni Malkin

Defensemen
Matt Niskanen, Paul Martin, Philip Samuelsson, Kris Letang, Carl Sneep, Joseph Morrow

Goalies
Marc-Andre Fleury, Brad Thiessen

Names to watch include Niskanen, Sneep, Vitale, Craig, and Park.
We have no idea on lines other than MAF will start.  We also assume lines will change during the game, especially after Bylsma installed a roulette wheel behind the bench.



Dressing for Detroit:

Forwards
Dan Cleary, Fabian Brunnstrom, Patrick Eaves, Drew Miller, Tomas Tatar, Pavel Datsyuk, Jiri Hudler, Jan Mursak, Chris Conner, Cory Emmerton, Tomas Holmstrom

Defensemen
Brendan Smith, Garnet Exelby, Mike Commodore, Brad Stuart, Logan Pyett, Nicklas Kromwall

Goalies
Joey MacDonald, Jimmy Howard

Datsyuk is the only name here that jumps out as a star.  Could be a boring game.
Chris Osgood announced his retirement, eliminating a huge hole at goalie for Detroit, and is now a goalie coach for them.  Kris Draper, the greatest bottom six grinder to ever play the game, also retired, and is still waiting on a handshake from Sid.

Quick thoughts:
-great to see Malkin in the first preseason game
-let's see how Neal does with a legitimate top line center
-Matt Niskanen sucks
-MAF is expected to play two periods, and Thiessen the third.  Lebron James thinks Fleury is a quitter.

Go Pens

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

RECAP. Black and Gold Game

The Black and Gold game was last night.  Team Gold won 3-2.

Joe Vitale opened the scoring for Team Gold to make it 1-0.  Malkin added one later in the first to give Team Gold a 2-0 lead.  Jordan Staal cut the lead in half when he scored to make it 2-1.
In the 2nd period Malkin tallied his second goal of the game to give Team Gold a 3-1 lead.  Staal scored his second goal of the game to bring Team Black with in 1.  But Team Gold held on for the 3-2 win.

Pens play the Detroit Red Wings tomorrow at 7.

Go Pens

Monday, September 19, 2011

GAMEDAY

Black And Gold Game






The Pittsburgh Penguins and Wilkes Barre Scranton Penguins will play in an inner squad scrimmage tonight

7:00 P.M Mohegan Sun Area
Game will be televised locally in Wilkes Barre
The game will  also be on the radio and HD Radio in Pittsburgh
Check the Pens and Baby Pens websites for radio feed links

LINEUPS
No clue on any line combinations here.  The Penguins website had the forward line combos from practice today.  ( http://penguins.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=588926&navid=DL|PIT|home ) 

The rosters were announced today.  

TEAM BLACK                                                                TEAM GOLD
2 Matt Niskanen                                                                        1 Brent Johnson
4 Zbynek Michalek                                                                    6 Ben Lovejoy
5 Derek Engelland                                                                      7 Paul Martin
11 Jordan Staal                                                                          9 Pascal Dupuis
12 Richard Park                                                                        10 Mark Letestu
14 Chirs Kunitz                                                                         18 James Neal
19 Jason Williams                                                                      26 Steve Sullivan
23 Ryan Craig                                                                           30 Scott Munroe
24 Matt Cooke                                                                         38 Colin McDonald
25 Eric Tangradi                                                                        42 Keven Veilleux
28 Nick Johnson                                                                        46 Joe Vitale
29 Marc-Andre Fleury                                                               47 Simon Despres
33 Steve MacIntyre                                                                    51 Zach Sill
37 Brian Strait                                                                            54 Alexandre Picard
39 Brad Thiessen                                                                       55 Philip Samuelsson
48 Tyler Kennedy                                                                      57 Brian Gibbons
56 Paul Thompson                                                                     58 Kris Letang
59 Carl Sneep                                                                            64 Tom Kuhnhackl
62 Ben Street                                                                             67 Geoff Walker
69 Bryan Lerg                                                                           70 Joe Morrow
78 Scott Harrington                                                                   71 Evgeni Malkin

Not playing tonight will be Sidney Crosby, Dustin Jeffrey, Craig Adams, Brooks Orpik, Aaron Asham, Alex Grant, Joey Mormina, Dominik Uher, Brandon DeFazio, and Patrick Kileen.

I say Team Gold wins just for the simple fact that Matt Niskanen is on Team Black.

Go Pens.



Training Camp. Days 1 and 2

The Penguins FINALLY reported to training camp this week.  The team was divided up into 3 separate groups. Highlighting group A were Jordan Staal, Chris Kunitz, James Neal, Marc-Andre Fleury, Kris Letang and Brooks Orpik.  Highlighting group B was Brent Johnson, Zbynek Michalek, Paul Martin, Eric Tangradi, Steve Sullivan, Evgeni Malkin, Tyler Kennedy, and Simon Despres.  Highlighting group C was Pascal Dupuis, Mark Letestu, Dustin Jeffrey, Matt Cooke, Aaron Asham, and......Sidney Crosby.

MOST IMPRESSIVE
One of the most impressive player so far has been goaltender Scott Munroe.  Munroe looked very sharp during drill robbing many shot from during the drills.

Another player that has looked impressive is Tyler Kennedy.


In the Group A vs Group B scrimmage on Saturday Kennedy scored 2 goals as Group B won the scrimmage 5-1.  Kennedy also looked impressive during the shooting drills as well.

The line of Tyler Kennedy, Evgeni Malkin, and Steve Sullivan look very impressive the first 2 days of camp.  The lin showed a lot of chemistry during the scrimmages and were very sharp as well.

Sidney Crosby looked like he hasn't missed a single second of action.  Crosby entered training camp both days to a standing ovation and during drills looked sharp as ever.  Crosby started Saturday's practice by burying 9 of his first 10 shots.

LEAST IMPRESSIVE
One of the players who has looked the least impressive has been Simon Despres.  Last season Despres looked very impressive during training camp and during pre-season as well leaving many believe he would make the big club this season.  But Despres has looked less than stellar this camp stumbling over his own feet during drills and during one drill he tried to shoot the puck off the glass out of the zone but shot hit well over the glass.

Another player that looked hasn't looked impressive is Matt Niskanen.  He showed up to camp which automatically puts him on this list.



Martin St. Louis has probably blown past Niskanen and scored 62 mored times while your read this post.

Black and Gold game Monday at 7.  First pre-season game vs. The Detroit Red Wings on Wednesday.  

17 Days.  Go Pens








Monday, September 12, 2011

RECAP. Pens Rookies Lose 5-1

The Pens Rookies to on the Rookies from the Toronto Maple Leafs last night and fell 5-1.

The Pens got on the board early when Brandon DeFazio scored 13 seconds into the game.  But the Leafs rookies scored 5 unanswered goals to win the game 5-1.

The Pens Rookies final game of the tournament will be on Tuesday at 2 against the Chicago Blackhawks.

Training Camp in like 6 minutes.  Season starts in 24 days.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

GAMEDAY

Gameday

Pens Rookies vs Leafs Rookies

7:00 p.m. General Motors Centre
Again no TV for this game
Maple Leafs website might have a stream.  Or TSN's 
Check Penguins website or the Pensblog for more updates


LINEUPS

Again no clue here.  The only thing we know is that Eric Tangradi, Nick Peterson, Brian Strait and Carl Sneep will be scratches for the Pens. (via @EricP55 on twitter)

The Pens lost their last game 4-0 to the Sens rookies and look to rebound against the Leafs rookies tonight.

GO PENS

RECAP. Pens Rookies Lose 4-0

The Pens Rookies took on the Otttawa Senator Rookies yesterday in Oshawa Ontario and lost 4-0.

Despite being shut out the Penguins prospects looked good according to the Penguins website.

Again don't look here for constant updates or legitimate recaps of this tournament.  If you want to know more about this tournament check the Penguins website or the Pensblog.

25 days til it actually matters

Go Pens

Saturday, September 10, 2011

GAMEDAY

GAMEDAY

Pens Rookies vs Senators Rookies

2:00 p.m. General Motors Centre 
Game won't be televised.
Games might be streamed on Pens website.
Check the Pensblog for more updates they have someone in Oshawa covering the tournament.


Lineups

No clue as to any starting line up for either team.  Pens will look to players like Tangradi, Petersen, and Veilleux to carry them through the tournament as well as getting a look at players such as Simon Despres, Tom Kuhnhackl, Phillip Samuelsson, 2011 first round draft pick Joseph Morrow.  No clue what players Ottawa has up there or any other team for that matter.

26 days

GO PENS

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Welcome Back Richard Park and training Camp information

Today the Penguins signed former Islander forward Richard Park.  Park played 58 games as a member of the Penguins from 1994-1997.
Park tallied 4 goals and 7 assists as a member of the Penguins.

Park's most recent NHL stint was with the New York Islnaders.  He played there from 2006-2010 and every time you turned around he was probably scoring some shorthanded goal against the Penguins because that's all he would ever do.

Park spent last season playing in Switzerland for Geneve-Servette HC where he tallied 15 goals and 19 assists in 47 games.


                      TRAINING CAMP

The Penguins also announced today that the team will report to training camp Friday September 16th.  The team will have 2 practices open to the public on Saturday September 17th and Sunday September 18th.  The Pens will practice 2 more times after that before their 1st preseason game against the Detroit Red Wings on Wednesday September 21st at Consol Energy Center.

28 more days people.

Go Pens

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Gameday: Crosby Press Conference


Consol Energy Center - 12:30 p.m.
TV:  Root Sports - now we have a place to root
Radio - 105.9 The X

Sidney Crosby reacts to a Danica Patrick GoDaddy ad.


Today will be Sid's first time talking to the media since April.  All signs from reliable sources indicate that nothing earth-shattering will happen, but the sports talk stations are buzzing with people who know someone who knows someone whose mom is a janitor at Consol Energy Center and she said ____________________.  Most likely the subject matter will discuss his status for training camp over the next few weeks. 


Projected Lineup

No idea here.  We're guessing that Sid will obviously speak, along with Shero, Bylsma, and Sid's doctors.  Not expecting to hear from Mario or David Morehouse today.  Guessing Sid says he is progressing but there is not timeline in the most boring way possible, while the media will attempt to ask the same question multiple times in different ways.


Dude in blue suit = not impressed
Holding down the fort until 12:30

Go Crosby

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Sidney Crosby to speak at press conference tomorrow


No idea what he's discussing specifically about his concussion.  Might be planning to take his talents to South Beach and join the Florida Panthers.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Happy Birthday Marty Straka

Happy 39th Birthday to former Penguins winger Marty Straka.

Straka was selected 19th overall by the Penguins in the 1992 draft.  He was traded to Ottawa in 1995 but returned to the Penguins in 1997.  He was with the Penguins until 2003 when he was traded to the Los Angeles Kings.  Straka's scored 95 points with the Penguins during the 2000-2001 season when he tallied 95 points. (27 goals, 68 assists)