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01-02-2013, 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by BlindWillyMcHurt View Post
But, again... in situations where it makes sense (like the other team playing too many guys on the first unit for all 2 minutes and trying to catch them when they are tired)... I see no reason to keep them on the bench. I certainly see no reason not to play them in "do or die" situations like the playoffs.

I'm also not too worried about the extra couple of minutes they might rack up. With some players I would... but these guys are both horses.
Agree with you situationally. Crosby is the best faceoff guy on the team, it makes a lot of sense to get him out there for key draws. When teams/coaches ride Kovalchuk and Semin and give them a lot of PK time, it sometimes brings the attention to detail and focus to their games back, I could see that being benefical for Malkin to get some PK shifts too, especially late in the PP if the other team is using defensemen for the full 2 minutes.

As far as riding them, I don't think it made sense last year. Crosby wasn't in Crosby shape or form, and it showed. I think the Pens asked a lot of Malkin, in year 1 of ACL, and he cleared every hurdle, but it probably wasn't the wisest to totally run him aground. This year, however, can and should be different since both are presumably, hopefully, in better places.

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