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Author Topic: Pens vs Sharks  (Read 882 times)
PghSteel-43
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« on: Oct 28, 2008 at 14:52 »

This game kicks off our first true test of the season in my opinion.  Sabourin is expected to get the start tonight.  While Gill is skating with the team, he is listed as TBD.  It would be nice to see us get two point in that building tonight (10:30 eastern start time).  We are 0-6-1 at San Jose dating back to 1998-99.

Up to this point, the defense is holding up beautifully.  They are giving up an average of 2.11 goals per game, fourth-best in the NHL.  They have also given up just five goals during regulation and overtime in the past four games.  Not bad.  For the most part, I think we are underrated when it comes to our defense.  Even last season they did not get the credit they deserved in my opinion.  Fleury and Sabourin have looked great up to this point, but that also has to do with the guys playing in front of them.  Scuderi doesn't get the credit of playing solid defense.  He rarely takes a dumb penalty (or any in general).  Eaton is solid as a rock.  Great shot blocker and PKer.  Orpik is well, Orpik.  Letang is still young, but stepped up his defensive game last season.

On offense, with the exception of sitting back in the third period of the Rangers game, it's good to see others on the offense starting to contribute.  Talbot, Sykora and even Fedotenko finding ways to score 5 on 5.  While Staal has yet to score a goal, he has appeared more determined over the last two-three games.  Hustling, skating hard, etc.  It still hurts watching Dupuis miss opportunity after opportunity.  I love how the guy hustles, skates hard and throws the body around, but I pull my hair out while watching him on that #1 line.  He missed around three chances during that last game.  It's also good to see Satan move the legs from time to time.  It's still a shame we are not getting consistent production and hustle that we expected from him while playing 5 on 5.  Hopefully that changes at some point, sooner rather than later would be nice.

Our ST's are looking better.  While Malkin still scares the hell out of me on the point, it doesn't appear that Therrien will throw Letang/Goligoski on the first PP unit.  While we are scoring, we are also still giving up the SH chances because Malkin is having trouble handling the puck at the point.  I just hope it doesn't bite us in the ass in the future.  It has already costed us a game earlier in the year.  Our PK is looking solid, thanks in part to Ziggy, Max and Dupuis.  Eaton, Orpik and Scuderi playing great also doesn't hurt.

Anyways, bring on the Sharks!



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Captain Chaos
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« Reply #1 on: Oct 28, 2008 at 15:26 »

I actually I thought the Rangers game was the first big test of the season and the boys of winter failed by not playing the full 60. With less than 20 ticks on the clocks and the blue shirts on the ropes, Sid tries to pad his stats and takes a shot at an empty net from his own blue line. I love Sid, but that's selfish and it gave away 2 points to a division rival no less. A shame to waste a great team effort and hand over 2 points with 8 seconds left.

As for tonight, can't figure out why Sabourin is starting over MAF? I always thought you played your best players against the top teams. I don't care what Sabourin did against the Bruins, MAF is your franchise goalie, he should be in there against the NHL's elite.
« Last Edit: Oct 28, 2008 at 15:28 by Captain Chaos » Logged

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"It's a big game because it's the next game." - Mike Tomlin
PghSteel-43
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« Reply #2 on: Oct 28, 2008 at 15:41 »

I'm guessing with three games in five days on the road (which I why I feel it's our first true test), I think they want to give Fleury a rest.  Flying to San Jose, over to Phoenix, back east to St. Louis and then back to Pittsburgh to play Edmonton on the sixth is not going to be fun.  Sabourin playing great in his last game also figures in on the decision I'm sure.  I would also have to believe keeping Sabourin fresh just in case Fleury goes down with a injury (last season) also figures in on the decision.

Those are my three guesses/assumptions.

As for the Rangers game, I blame the coaching more than anything else.  We had the two goal lead, we went into the third, got conservative and put two shots on net during the whole period.  We had four shots on net in OT.  That's coaching in my opinion.
« Last Edit: Oct 28, 2008 at 16:28 by PghSteel-43 » Logged
PghSteel-43
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« Reply #3 on: Oct 28, 2008 at 15:53 »

Penguins' Talbot to miss tonight's game
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
By Shelly Anderson, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Penguins center Max Talbot will not play tonight against the San Jose Sharks because of an undisclosed injury, coach Michel Therrien said after the morning skate.

Talbot, who has a goal in nine games, and forward Evgeni Malkin left yesterday's practice early. Therrien said then that both were OK. Malkin participated in today's momrning skate, but Talbot did not.

Paul Bissonnette will replace Talbot in the lineup.

Also, defenseman Hal Gill participated in the morning skate, the first time he has practiced with the team in more than a week. He had been skating on his own since he got a right hand injury Oct. 20 in Boston.

Gill is expected to miss his third game in a row.

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/08302/923501-100.stm
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Captain Chaos
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« Reply #4 on: Oct 28, 2008 at 21:19 »

As for the Rangers game, I blame the coaching more than anything else.  We had the two goal lead, we went into the third, got conservative and put two shots on net during the whole period.  We had four shots on net in OT.  That's coaching in my opinion.

After the OT loss to "de Devil" a few games back, Mike Therien was asked directly if it was a planned strategy to back off and stop shooting (2 shots in the 3rd & 1 in OT) and he blew up on Tim Benz at the suggestion. Taking Mike on his word, it's not the coaching. Where ever the blame lies, it's becoming a bad habit they need to nip in the bud quickly or we'll be looking for those lost points come March.
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PghSteel-43
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« Reply #5 on: Oct 28, 2008 at 21:37 »

When it becomes a trend, it sounds like coaching to me.  I'm not stating Therrien went up to them in between the second and third and said "Guys, don't bother shooting, just get two shots on net and we can get out of here with two points.", but he's not saying the right things when we find ourselves in those situations.

You would think around the ten minute mark of that third period when you have one shot on net, you would call a TO and talk to the guys.  Switch something up, get them settled down, get some points across to them.  Anything at that point.  I'm no coach nor am I ready to hang Therrien, but it's becoming a trend and that is coaching when all is said and done. 

I hate conservative play in every sport, particulary in the game of hockey.
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PghSteel-43
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« Reply #6 on: Oct 28, 2008 at 22:02 »

And the Sharks score a SH goal to make it 1-0. 
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PghSteel-43
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« Reply #7 on: Oct 28, 2008 at 22:45 »

Sabourin = The only reason why this game is not 4-0 Sharks.
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PghSteel-43
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« Reply #8 on: Oct 28, 2008 at 23:45 »

Fedotenko scores while playing on the Sid-Geno line.  Hustled, went to the front of the net and scored.

Unfortunately, it's 2-1 Sharks.
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PghSteel-43
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« Reply #9 on: Oct 29, 2008 at 00:02 »

Tough loss tonight.  Sabourin played excellent and that's a understatement.  PK was excellent.  That's about where it ends.

Dupuis is proving that he still can't play on a #1 line.  Blew a two on one with Malkin tonight.

Fedotenko took a horrible penalty while we were on the PP late in the third, but quickly made up for it with a goal on Sid-Geno line.  Then turned around and had another opportunity.  Talk about a guy who's hustling every night and getting his scoring chances.  He's finding ways to get open and is constantly moving into position.  No complaints here.  It's a shame the offense as a whole waited until the third period to start bringing on the heat.  Before the third, we were struggling to clear the puck and our passing was horrible.

On that note, that Sharks team is a damn good hockey team.  Extremely fast.  Always have a man on the puck.  Always in our face.  Hardly ever take penalties.  Solid defense headed by Boyle and on offense they have Thornton, Marleau and Cheechoo.  Not one man on that roster takes a shift off.  You do not see guys slacking, dragging the legs and playing when they simply feel like playing.  They are just a good, smart, disciplined hockey team. 

Anyways, on to Phoenix.





 
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