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Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by MJ5150, Mar 7, 2014.
Thread one capped out at 1,000 posts. After a brief intermission, on to the second period.
Skates laced, on the ice. Time for the playoff push! Go Pens!!
Looking forward to tonight's Pens game. I think I may be able to watch all of it.
I am absolutely STOKED to go see Mike Modano's number retirement tomorrow! Truly a player that is a legend of the game!
Modano was one of my favorite players for a long time. That should be awesome. Take pics!
What's with all the Pittsburgh fans here, anyway? A pox on your locker room.
NHL.com has western conference teams as their top five in the power rankings, with all three CA teams right in the mix. Eastern teams are 6-8 though.
Full standings here: http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=708207&cmpid=nhl-go
Bah. Horse rubbish!
Don't know where you live or what channels you get but Fox Sports SW is broadcasting it live at 6pm Central. (I plan on recording it as well)
What is your top five?
Boston is #6, but I see them as a top five. Pittsburgh, not so much.
I don't know what the correct order of the top 5 in the NHL should be, but I wouldn't argue against the notion that they are all Western Conference teams.
In a small sample size, the B's have played the best teams in the West pretty even, but if the B's are fortunate enough to return to the Finals, they would likely be the underdog.
My top 5 would be western skewed, but not completely. In order, I'd place the teams as follows
I could switch Boston and Chicago with no issues. Boston is stronger on defense but Chicago has a better non conference record and scoring.
I'm curious how you can't include Pittsburgh in your top 5.
Pittsburgh will be heading into the playoffs with major injuries, goaltending issues, and what a lot of people are now considering a head coach who refuses to make proper adjustments when necessary. They are good enough to dominate a weak Metro division through sheer talent but when the chips are on the table like the Pittsburgh Boston series, the Pens seem to lose their composure, are easily out muscled and cling to a failing system rather than adjust, resulting in being out coached.
Could they get hot, make a run, and win the cup? Of course they could. But right now, as a guy who watches every single Pens game, I'm not putting any money on them. They were embarrassed by Chicago in the outdoor game and last night blew a game against the Sharks they should have won because they set cruise control too early and got outplayed. Just feels like there's no sense of urgency and a feeling that of they just "stick to their game" that things will pan out.
The Pens are 4-2 this year against the top 5 in those power rankings. They did lose the Boston series 1-2.
Personally I agree, they do get complacent. Which is probably a good thing most days for some teams, but not in their best interest.
What major injuries are effecting their play? Yes, they have some good players sidelined. Yes, the fact that Vokun isn't backing up Fluery is an issue. Has it really hampered the team?
I take the Blackhawks game for what it was. They play a north south, fast paced, up the ice asap type game. An inch of snow slowing down the puck kind of puts the breaks on the game plan. They didn't adjust and got beat.
Lazarus.Bird summed up my thoughts well. I have been defending Bylsma for the last couple years now by pointing the naysayers to the 2009 SC. We are now coming up on five years since that victory, and it's getting harder for me to point back that far. The last few postseasons have been marked by epic and near epic collapses.
I've never coached a hockey game in my life, so I won't criticize the guy too much, but from my view, it's the same thing over and over in the playoffs. Other teams have adjusted and figured out how to beat the Pens in the playoffs. Sure, the Pens burn through the regular season each year, but so what. The playoffs are game time, and this team just looks too weak physically and mentally. I hope the Pens prove me wrong one of these post seasons, but I'm not counting on it.
I miss guys like Billy Guerin, Gary Roberts, Hal Gill, Sergei Gonchar, or even Georges Laraque. They had a presence in the locker room and on the ice that the Pens just don't have anymore.
I'm definitely not all aboard the Bylsma hate train. I would love to see him turn it around. But it's getting harder and harder to defend him. These playoffs are make or break IMO.
Ok. I'm with you there on pretty much all points Mike. Couple things though. The rankings however that we are referring to, are for the current regular season and how the teams "appear" to stack up. Statistically speaking, the Pens have the winningest goalie, the top point scorer, and the best plus/minus defenseman. So, at this moment in the season, given all things remaining equal, the Pens are a top 5 team.
Looking ahead, they enter this post season ( knock on wood ) with a healthy Crosby and Malkin. I certainly hope the flower steps up and plays like the goalie he is during the regular season.
Also, perhaps Bylsma was embarrassed enough in Sochi to get his act together for the playoffs.
Like you Mike, I long for the old school defensive juggernauts like we had in the late 80's early 90's.
I will say I am completely impressed with the decision to keep Maatta on the roster. He had two more goals against San Jose. Having him playing so well makes the loss of Letang not as significant. I'd like to see more of Samuelson.
Well despite getting out shot like crazy they managed to come up with the win against the Ducks. Love when Fleury is in shut down mode and keeps them in a game like that. Bylsma actually adjusted, throwing Pyatt onto the second line with Malkin and Neal and putting Jokinen on the third line with Sutter. Gave them some more offensive depth through 3 lines and for some reason seemed to spark Malkin.