Penguins – Coyotes Fallout
Hanzal to the Capitals?
— The Washington Capitals are the NHL’s best team and may not feel the need to pay the premium it would take to acquire Coyotes center Martin Hanzal, but they should take a good look at the tape from last night in the problems Hanzal gave the Penguins with his size and strength down the middle.
Hanzal would drive Penguins nuts in a potential seven game series and create type of matchup problems in the bottom-6 Washington didn’t pose to Pittsburgh last spring.
“He was a monster for us tonight,” Coyotes goaltender Mike Smith said of Hanzal.
Archibald Shines, PK Usage
— Josh Archibald has the makings of being the perfect 4th line player in Mike Sullivan’s system with his skating ability and tenaciousness on the forecheck, while also being able to make a skilled play. Scouts outside of Pittsburgh have been buzzing about him over the last month.
Interesting usage last night in that Eric Fehr saw zero minutes of ice time on the PK, while the Penguins used Matt Cullen – Tom Kuhnhackl as their top PK forward pair and Carter Rowney (2:14) and Josh Archibald (2:05) as their second PK forward pair.
Dallas Scouting Fleury
— Marc Andre Fleury stopped 21 of 25 shots in the Penguins 4-3 overtime loss to the Coyotes, seeing his save percentage drop to .904 on the season. He is now 14-7-5 with a 3.17 goals against average.
Fleury has made four starts over the last month and has a save percentage below .865 in three of the four starts. He’s allowed four goals or more in 11 of 29 starts this season.
Quite surprisingly, the Penguins are getting bad backup goaltending right now, something they never expected with a duo of Murray and Fleury.
From a numbers standpoint, it’s the worst backup goaltending they’ve received since Brent Johnson had an .892 save percentage during the 2011-2012 season.
In 2013-2014, Jeff Zatkoff had a 2.61 GAA and .912 save percentage in 20 games. Last season Zatkoff who was quite bad some nights, was even giving the Penguins .917 save percentage goaltending before Matt Murray was elevated to the backup role.
Fleury’s performance was a bit of a mixed bag. 2 really poor goals against, Hanzal PPG and Connor Murphy overtime winner, some leaky shots get behind him that were close to going in, but Fleury also came up with some big time stops in the third with the Penguins trailing 3-1.
Penguins win in overtime and there’s a lot of talk of his strong third period performance afterwards than there is now because of the awful goal he allowed from Connor Murphy.
On the three goals against in regulation, the Reider goal was from 31 ft out but was a rocket of a shot.
Martin Hanzal’s power play goal to put the Coyotes up 2-1 was a poor rebound from Fleury that’s on him, while on the third goal against, Olli Maatta was doing Olli Maatta things in having poor position on Hanzal in front that led to a goal.
Unfortunately for Fleury, the Dallas Stars had scouts Want the Full Story? Get "Inside Access"