Monday, March 23, 2009

Do I Really Have To Watch

As i Puke my way through the Devils against Philly game on versus tonight i gotta wonder if, by losing yesterday, did the Pens give away their chance at home ice advantage in the 1st round of the playoffs. Lets face it, the Pens played well enough to win, the problem was that a good goalie stole all of Birons pads and played goal in his place.

The Pens are 2 points behind the Flyers with the game tied at 1 all heading into the second Period. In the middle of the 1st period the always classy philly fans broke out chanting the name of their beloved captain as you could hear on the tv A S S H O L E, A S S H O L E coming from the crowd. (update: It is now 2-1 Philly) Being a Pens fan it is hard to root for either team, since both teams can't lose, it's a no brainer to hope that the Devils win.

Are The Penguins better than last year ? That's an interesting question with really, no wrong answer. some ways they are and some ways they aren't. First, I think the East is a lot better this year than it was last year so you can't judge it by the overall record, Other than the fact that Montreal has been in a downward spiral, one spot away from losing 8th spot. That has a lot to do with the leading all star vote getter in Carey Price, can't keep a puck out of the net right now. Boston is a force, Washington, although i hate to say it, will be tough to beat. Philly? I don't care they still suck (Richards is a diver). Ottawa is coming on strong, so now you have to worry about them.
So we go by personnel. The main people the Pens lost were Marian D-bag Hossa, Ryan Money bags Malone, And Jarko "I hate Therrian" Ruutu, and don't anybody say Adam Hall was an asset. Ruutu was replaced with Matt Cooke, which would be an upgrade. Hossa was replaced by Guerin and Kunitz, which the way that line is playing now, you have to say it's an even trade at least, if not an upgrade. The only player that hasn't been replaced is Ryan Malone. Kunitz a Guerin are filling his role on the Power play by standing front of the net, so now that's taken care of.
So now we go to coaching staff. although i was against the firing of Coach T, the System that Bylsma has implemented has brought out the best in the Pens offensive prowess. With players like Sid, Malkin, Staal, Gonch, and Letang why not open it up and play more of a skating game. So i would say the coaching staff is an upgrade.
Bottom line in my opinion, the Pens have a better team than last season, but so does a lot of other teams in the east and right now we are on a collision course with the Flyers in the first round. I'm picking the Pens to take the East only if Maf can continue his dominance in net.

The Penguins are scoring goals. That's what the do. The article in the Trib pretty much sums it up. The Pens win by scoring a lot of goals, not by playing better defense. Score goals and have a solid net minder that can save a few that you wouldn't expect him to get. Tommy Barrasso has a lot of wins where he gave of 3 or more goals, but still played a solid game. Maf can do the same, maybe even better.

The Pens are finally winning, but you can't get deep in the playoffs without clicking on all cylinders and right now the Pens aren't. If they don;t soon figure out this lack of a power play thing, this could come back to haunt them. GO Pens

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