Kunitz jumpstarts Penguins comeback
The Pittsburgh Penguins had a lackluster first period and Dan Bylsma indicated in his post-game comments that the Chris Kunitz – Keith Ballard second period fight somewhat jumpstarted the Penguins.
Kunitz remains scoreless which is a major concern but he’s finding ways to impact a game. He’s been very good at puck possession, providing a physical presence and effective on the fore-check.
With his salary ($3.75 million), Kunitz is going to have to find ways to put the puck in the net but to his credit, he’s been one of the hardest workers on the team.
Crosby – Lemieux through 300 games
1. Mario Lemieux (300 games played)
*228 goals – 316 assists – 544 points
2. Sidney Crosby (300 games played)
*138 goals – 269 assists – 407 points
Staal battling through injuries
Jordan Staal missed practice on Sunday due to a sore shoulder and he left today’s game with an undisclosed injury. Staal returned in the third period and it is unknown if this injury was related. He did appear fine after the game.
Penguins have 24 blocked shots on the night
What the Penguins continue to do is frustrate their opposition in the defense zone because of their ability to block shots.
Tonight the Penguins had 24 blocked shots. Martin Skoula and Alex Goligoski each led the Penguins with 4 block shots each.
Bourque appears in third game of the season
Forward Eric Godard was a healthy scratch as Chris Bourque got the nod. Bourque had 7:50 of ice time including some power play time (1:27). The 23 year old forward has 3 shots on goal and provided some energy in the offensive zone.
Devils perfect on the road
The New Jersey Devils are 4-0 on the road and they were in the building tonight in preparation for tomorrow night’s game. The Devils had two scouts in attendance.
Horton needs a change of scenery
Nathan Horton, the 3rd overall pick in 2003 is only 24 years old but has been regarded as a bust by fans in Florida.
Horton has scored 20+ goals in four straight seasons including a 31 goal season in 2006-2007.
Horton is off to a slow start and trade rumors have followed him since last year.
Horton asked out of Florida last year as Horton has been dis-interested at times over the past year in a half.
A Panthers insider tells me the main reason Horton hasn’t reached his potential is that he’s playing out of position. Horton has all the tools to be a dynamic winger but because of the Panthers lack of depth down the middle, center is the best position for him in the Panthers system.
Some believe that this could be the year that Nathan Horton gets his wish and is dealt.
Panthers GM Randy Sexton hasn’t made Horton available for trade yet but at age 24 and with a reasonable contract, there will be plenty of interest and teams willing to give up immediate help, prospects for Horton.