Penguins Big Weekend
A week ago Mike Sullivan was disgusted with his clubs’ level of inconsistent play following a shutout loss to the New York Islanders.
Fast forward seven days and after winning three of four in taking six out of possible eight points in wins against the Flyers and Rangers, the mood has certainly changed.
Sunday’s 5-1 win Sunday night over the New York Rangers that included five different goal scorers and 12 different players recording points, saw Sullivan signing a much different tune.
“I like the traction our team is getting here of late,” said Sullivan after the Penguins produced one of their most convincing wins of the season despite another poor start.
President of Hockey Operations Brian Burke was on-record this week saying the Penguins have to change their ways of giving up the first goal and that your not going to win games that way. Maybe this season, though, will be an outlier where not scoring the first goal doesn’t come back to haunt you in the long-run like it almost always does.
The Penguins have certainly shown an uncanny ability to be getting outplayed and counter that by scoring in bunches. It’s saved their season to this point to overachieve for the most part against the toughest part of the schedule.
Saturday afternoon’s 4-3 come from behind win vs the Flyers could end up becoming the turning point of the season. What the Penguins have avoided for much of the season is bad starts to games not turning into disaster starts that bury them for good.
Sunday’s game was like that again where the Rangers just didn’t get that critical second goal when the Penguins were flat and disinterested to open, but Saturday’s game really stands out when you factor in the game the Penguins were coming off and the opponent.
And they didn’t start well at all. You had an Evgeni Malkin offensive zone penalty 56 seconds in that was soon followed up by allowing a 2-on-0 goal during 5 vs 5 play. The Penguins again, though, did not break when the Flyers had some golden opportunities to get an early multi-goal lead.
The biggest winner of the 3-1-0 week was Special Teams in the facet of providing momentum changing situations in games.
From Tuesday’s 5-2 win over the Flyers to both weekend wins, the penalty kill early on in games answered the bell in providing a number of game changing kills. A major lost opportunity for the Rangers Sunday night was losing momentum in the game off the Sidney Crosby tripping penalty at 9:15 of the first period. The Rangers had the 1-0 lead, were in complete control the game and much faster on pucks in all three zones, but the game totally flipped after Pittsburgh held the Rangers to just one shot on goal during the two minute power play. It gave Pittsburgh life and the game as a whole would soon shift totally in Pittsburgh’s favor.
For a team that struggles to play a 60 minute complete type game, one thing the Penguins have had a great ability this season is that games often don’t get away from them. Playing with fire? Probably in the big picture, but they hang around and it’s becoming a staple of their season.
Brian Dumoulin would net the Penguins a first round pick and + this summer but…………..
What a welcomed addition Brian Dumoulin was for the Penguins in their weekend wins and getting your best defenseman back will do that. Prior to Dumoulin’s return, his future had been a topic of discussion. If the Penguins wanted to start retooling the system, Pittsburgh would easily get a late first round pick and prospect from a contender for Dumoulin who has two seasons remaining on his contract and just a $4 million hit. If this season truly shows the Penguins window is shut, he’s an ideal player you would look at.
However, as long as Sidney Crosby is sticking around and you want to keep him happy that the Penguins are going to try to continue to compete for championships, Brian Dumoulin is off the table for that type of trade scenario. You can’t do it unless there’s some player for player trade that would make you immediately better in one area. And one to that extent is unlikely to be out there.
And the same goes for Bryan Rust this summer who like Dumoulin is one of the Penguins biggest assets from age/cap hit/impact, to help restock the system (if this season again fails to produce much of a long playoff run)……..
But, As long as Sidney Crosby is sticking around and you want to keep him happy, Bryan Rust is a near lock to extend this summer, multiple sources [hide] close to the situation say. Two-way top-6 players who bring everything to the table that Rust brings are hard to find and if you find one out there in free agency, he’s going to cost you around $6 million per season. Pittsburgh is going to be in a tough spot to try to do both, put the best team around Sidney Crosby and retool for the future at the same time. And that makes the likes of Rust, Dumoulin more valuable to the team on the ice, even if there might be pause in some corners of paying Rust $5+ million into his 30’s when Pittsburgh might only still be competing for another year or two. [/hide]
— Evgeni Malkin had a big weekend and was doing offensively what he’s supposed to be doing. He’s 34, not 44. Let’s see where the next couple weeks go for him but some encouraging signs that Kasperi Kapanen’s speed down the wing is starting to back off defensemen and opening up time and space for Malkin through the neutral zone with the puck and on zone entries that has had a positive impact in Malkin being able to drive play.To read this insider news, subscribe to get “Inside Access”!
$3+ for gas lol
Two Canadian teams want to keep the Canadian division intact next year. My guess is the Oilers, so they keep beating up on Ottawa and have people believe they are a good team and Toronto so maybe they will finally go somewhere in the playoffs.
Take away Vancouver and Montreal is garbage, Ottawa is garbage but for good reasons and Calgary has no identity. The Jets are quietly at 36 points.
Desmith looked really good tonight..Penguins played well enough to win..two pty netters
Will have to be better at home versus Boston Monday and Tuesday..
I have said this team can compete with a good move or two by management..
We finally got Dumo back, Malkin is playing better, and the rash of injuries is over and we are climbing…
Ww need some depth scoring.
Maybe another d
Pens are playing better, Malkin is putting up points, Montreal lost, Same(e) is quiet. All is right with the world.
Penguins taking care of buisness winning the game they are supposed to win 5 – 2 over Buffalo… Malkin/Tanev/Rust/Guentzel/Angello scoring goals ! Tristan Jarry again looked good in goal. Letang and Dumoulin on for both goals against not the best effort from those two on defense ! Islanders 37 Capitals 35 Penguins 33 Bruins 31 Flyers 29 Remember I said the Penguins would make the playoffs and most laughed at me…this team has too much talent. They just hadn’t hit their groove, a ton of injuries, and we get a smart move by Burke and Hextall I wouldnt count this… Read more »
I don’t think that’s why people were laughing at you.
MAF added to Covid protocol list.
Pettersson wow slow and soft…
Penguins another two points but played a very weak 3rd period outshot 14-2..
Jarry made two unbelievable stops with less than a minute or it would have gone OT.
Rangers from 241 left in the game were all over us…we were sitting on a one goal lead..
Not surprised at all. They do not know how to play with a lead.
McCann got hurt again last game. Didnt play..
Crosby goal assist hit the post with 58 seconds..
Capitals devils were 4-4
Sabres Flyers were 4islanders Bruins were 1-1
It seems like every X Penguins scores against us Sheary, schultz, johnson thank god we dont play Hornqvist and the Panthers..LOL
Sprong may have too. Lol
Jack Fuckin’ Johnson lol
When is the actual NHL Trade deadline? Why isn’t it sooner with the shortened schedule.
April 12, 2021.
Penguins 2 points
15-9-1…third place one point behind the capitals..
who else noticed sullivan is giving the 4th line under 8 mins per game? who strangled him??????
what is it with you and strangulations?
He is into autoerotic asphyxiation
Debrusk a healthy sit for the Bruins tonight…..trade coming?
They said Boston has a suitor? Not the Penguins I hope !
Lol not everyone is coming to Pittsburgh
I know that silly just wondering. I don’t even want hi…
Just wandering if anyone knew anything that’s all…calm down Becky
Need to dump Pettersson and his Salary
Good call. Dude is softer than the top of Sam’s infant like head.
I think I’ve been fairly consistent about that for several years along with the fact that ZAR is nothing more than a fourth liner. he’s holding back these two line mates
Diego I agree with you….but this year he has what 5 goals already that is one behind the $9.5 million dollar man Malkin !!
Look his defensive game is terrific and is suited for the 4th line….
hextall clearly strangled malkin. that’s good because he’s finally skating. hextall also clearly strangled sullivan. did you notice rodriguez didn’t skate with sid and he actualy has the best 6 players in the top 6? hasnt’ been that way ever under sullivan.
Hey Yoda how is Fleury doing this year
Apparently better then Murray,desmith and jarry combined
st bleury will be on the bench in the playoffs. who cares about the regular season and that garbage division.
At some point the organization is going to need to trade assets they have to acquire picks and other players. That is how you retool. You can’t let Sid dictate each and every move you make, otherwise, they will be stuck at the same point year after year.
Oh I agree but we are in a win now for the next two years mode….so lets go for it..
In two years we have all our draft picks in every round and we should protect those. But this year and next year by any means necessary….
field a strong team…however that needs to be done…
Everyone is focused on a guy like Eric Stahl and for good reason he is a solid player. I would go after Calle Jamkrok center Nashville Predators. Nashville will be selling.. – He makes only $2 million (signed for 2 more years) – He scored his 6th goal last night in a OT win at Dallas – His last 5 seasons he has average 15 to 19 goals a season – He was a beast against us in the 2017 Stanley Cup final – He is 29 fast has a good shot – We have $1.3 in cap space so… Read more »
Getting Dumoulin back is huge and it showed he played well and the Penguins beat the Rangers 5-1. I keep saying this the Penguins are a move or two away by new management from competing for a Cup.. He steadies Leturnover!!
We need another forward preferably a 3 line center. Maybe a depth tough guy forward a Max Comtrais Anaheim.
If this is the real Dummo then this will be a bit better for the D, if it’s the post injury Dumo who was playing before he got injured again then they are fucked.
Hey for missing 15 games and playing back to back games over 22 minutes Dumo played well.