The Phoenix Coyotes played a 60 minute structured game and set the tone early. They frustrated the Penguins forwards and Pittsburgh had no answer to break the Coyotes trap in the neutral zone.
*Pittsburgh was very undisciplined and finished the game with 10 penalties. Many of those penalties were hooking or interference calls due to players not moving their feet. A few others were slashing calls out of frustration.
*Game puck goes to the Coyotes coaching staff. Dave Tippett has the Coyotes playing a type of system that gives the Coyotes their best chance to win. Their game tonight was to cause turnovers in the neutral zone and attack the Penguins offensively. Phoenix has good speed upfront.
*Winger Chris Bourque saw his first action of the season. He’s overmatched at times in the corners against bigger, stronger players but as the game went on, he did some nice things. What was not surprising was Dan Bylsma using
Bourque with Evgeni Malkin for a few shifts. Bourque skated with Malkin in Tuesday’s practice at times. Bourque also took a shift with Sidney Crosby in the third period.
*Dan Bylsma indicated after the game that he was pleased with the performance of Brent Johnson who made 22 saves on the night.
Bylsma used a number of different line combinations in an attempt to jump start his team.
*Were the Penguins looking ahead to Philadelphia? I don‘t think so but that was a concern of mine this morning. The Penguins just weren’t able to get into the game.
The theme of the game was the Penguins inability to get anything going.
*The Penguins will travel to Philadelphia immediately following the game.
* A bright spot for the Penguins was Jordan Staal who was 12 – 1 on face-offs. Staal was 6-for-18 on draws against the Islanders Saturday night.
*Gary Roberts was in attendance and received a standing ovation from the crowd.
*The Penguins were out-shot 25-24
*The Penguins agreed to terms with 2009 1st round pick Simon Despres on a three year entry level contract this evening. Despres will join the organization next year.