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Cole's Plus/Minus: Penguins vs. Leafs in a Pond Hockey Game

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03-09-2013, 11:18 PM
  #201
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Originally Posted by ColePens View Post
They said they were practicing 3 on 3 down low defensively, but I call ********. There is no way. They don't even come close to picking a guy and sticking with them. Unless their communication down low is SO bad.
It's pretty obvious either the message Bylsma is relaying isn't getting through to them, or it's too ****ed up and wrong that it's doomed to fail from the start.

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03-09-2013, 11:20 PM
  #202
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Originally Posted by KIRK View Post
1. Pretty sure he meant that you'll only see Adams out of the lineup the day you pry the lineup card from Bylsma's cold hand.

2. I just traded Kennedy and Orpik to Toronto for Kulemin and Holzer. Forward lines are set as Kunitz-Sid-BB, Kulie-Geno-Neal, Cooke-Sutter-Dupuis, and Jeffrey-Vitale-Adams, subject to Shero doing a little window dressing for the 4th line. Defense will be watched closely and a big move, if available, will be pursued.

I think Orpik's reputation gets you that still. And, think about it. You slot BB then with Sid and Kunitz. Then, you do some window dressing on the bottom six and in case Dupuis needs to slot back up if an issue arises with BB. Means you've got all the assets lying around to make an impact move on defense.
Toronto is likely looking to make room for Jake Gardiner who hasn't returned from a conditioning stint yet in the AHL yet. They probably won't be looking to bring in another defenseman. Not saying you still can't get Kulemin but I'm not sure that addresses Toronto's needs at all.

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03-09-2013, 11:23 PM
  #203
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Good game.

Can't make mistakes against the Penguins, they're simply too good.

Hope you guys take your division!

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Old
03-09-2013, 11:26 PM
  #204
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrBurgundy View Post
It's pretty obvious either the message Bylsma is relaying isn't getting through to them, or it's too ****ed up and wrong that it's doomed to fail from the start.
3 on 3 is hard to **** up. It only fails when you don't have good defenders. We have plenty of that and guys like Orpik, Martin, and Engo should all play ridiculously well under that scheme.

But I don't even see it. Is anyone else seeing it? They don't call out a guy and stay on them at all.

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Old
03-09-2013, 11:42 PM
  #205
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This was a win, but it was a frustrating win in that it shouldn't have ever gone to OT/SO to begin with.

-Why can this team not play 60 minutes of solid defense? They looked fine in the first period, with the only Leafs goal coming on a PP (our crappy PK is another issue) and being limited to only 5 shots. Then ... they fall apart for no apparent reason.

-Sid had a very, very strong game. It's unbelievable that he only got a single point. He played well enough, and created enough, to walk away with a 4 or 5 point night.

-Orpik on the PK, in particular. I don't know, am I wrong in wondering why there's always a guy right on Fleury's doorstep with Orpik literally a foot away and not even attempting to box him out/clear him from the front of the net? He'll even glance over and see the guy, and it's like he's thinking, "yep, there he is. Derp dee derp".

-Tanner Glass serves no purpose on this team. Literally none. It's like having Steve McKenna play a regular shift, but without the fighting ability and intimidation factor. Add to that the fact Bylsma puts him on the PK to take a faceoff? Are you friggin' kidding me?

-Letang is literally like an extra forward. He makes some boneheaded plays, but man does he add that extra dimension to the attack.

-Geno better not be seriously hurt.

-Bennett looked great. Not sure why that goal was credited to Martin and not him ... but either way, he was great tonight.

-Despres better not get scratched tomorrow in favor of Eaton. Of course, you just know he will.

-Our fourth line is useless. I'm sorry, but it is. They're not even dependable defensively, they hit but are too slow for the hits to actually cause turnovers, and they're an absolute joke offensively.

-The same issues that have plagued this team down last year's stretch and playoffs, the same issues that have plagued this team for much of this year, are just going to kill them in the playoffs if they're not sorted out. Seriously, we shouldn't have to score 5 goals a game just to have a shot at winning.

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03-10-2013, 12:14 AM
  #206
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Just got back from the game. Close call. We need to step up our D. If it is against a top team, we are screwed. It was weird with people starring at me and booing me when the Pens won though. I guess thats what I get being a Pens fan in Toronto =(

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03-10-2013, 12:27 AM
  #207
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Originally Posted by HeroicKaizer View Post
Just got back from the game. Close call. We need to step up our D. If it is against a top team, we are screwed. It was weird with people starring at me and booing me when the Pens won though. I guess thats what I get being a Pens fan in Toronto =(
Long trip home? lol cause game ended like 3 hours ago.

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Old
03-10-2013, 12:29 AM
  #208
Wolfgang Krauser
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Originally Posted by SinfulCobraZ View Post
Long trip home? lol cause game ended like 3 hours ago.
No one in TO goes straight home after hockey games, real fans that is. We all go out drinking, always(lol). That's going to be me when I go to the game on Thursday!

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03-10-2013, 12:32 AM
  #209
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Leaf fan coming in peace just wanted to say that was great to watch. I watch sid every chance I get and he looked the best i've seen him all year CANT WAIT for thursday hopefully he gets through the next couple games injury free.

Also wanted to say we play you guys suprisingly hard almost makes me want to see us matchup in the playoffs cause I think Leafs are going to be there this year

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03-10-2013, 12:46 AM
  #210
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one more thing please SLAUGHTER the NYI tomorrow little to close to us in the standings for my liking.

Thankyou in advance

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03-10-2013, 12:59 AM
  #211
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I could not have asked for more from Bennett to this point. I love watching the kid play.

Like Jig said, that long area saucer for Geno was a beauty, not to mention his pass that nearly sent Neal on a breakaway. He's creating chances left and right, and he isn't even attempting high-risk plays to do it.

A young, skilled RH shot wing cost-controlled at under a mil for the next 3 years. It's like some sort of wonderful dream.

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Old
03-10-2013, 01:09 AM
  #212
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Love love love what Bennett brings. His play has changed the dynamic of that line. It's not Bennett fitting in with Malkin/Neal, it's Neal trying to fit in to Malkin/Bennett.

I'm curious what people think of the reffing. Other teams boards constantly cry about refs siding with the Pens, but I don't see it at all.

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03-10-2013, 01:40 AM
  #213
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Originally Posted by ColePens View Post
3 on 3 is hard to **** up. It only fails when you don't have good defenders. We have plenty of that and guys like Orpik, Martin, and Engo should all play ridiculously well under that scheme.

But I don't even see it. Is anyone else seeing it? They don't call out a guy and stay on them at all.
I'm not going to get into this debate again, but arguing about d-zone coverage, especially in this game is looking for something to get mad at, OTHER than our goalie.

CBC replays the games at night so I just finished watching the game over in a condensed version. There wasn't a single goal against tonight that came off of any cycle or sustained zone time. Remove the ambient noise of Leaf fans blowing their load every time a Leaf touched the puck and making it sound like every shot was on a breakaway and I have no idea way anyone would complain about coverage 5 on 5. Pens actually had more chances in the 3rd than the Leafs did, including a short breakaway that Neal had.

Cooke and Kennedy got caught on a couple of icings after the PK and couldn't get out of the zone, and there was one other shift where the Leafs had some zone time but were kept out in the perimeter. The tying goal was nothing more than a deflected shot landing perfectly on the stick of Kessel. Nothing anyone can do when that happens.

Leafs had 5 shots in the 1st, and 5 in a third period that supposedly saw the Pens running around headless.

The PK needs more than a bit of work, but I'd like Fleury to at least try to get around a screen instead of just praying the puck hits him. It's incredible that every media outlet and fanbase OUTSIDE of Pittsburgh looks at him as anything but an overrated and erratic goalie, but it seems that nobody who roots for the Pens can ever do anything but find excuses for him.

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Old
03-10-2013, 01:45 AM
  #214
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Originally Posted by Rowdy Roddy Peeper View Post
I could not have asked for more from Bennett to this point. I love watching the kid play.

Like Jig said, that long area saucer for Geno was a beauty, not to mention his pass that nearly sent Neal on a breakaway. He's creating chances left and right, and he isn't even attempting high-risk plays to do it.

A young, skilled RH shot wing cost-controlled at under a mil for the next 3 years. It's like some sort of wonderful dream.
So, so true. I had originally thought a trade deadline rental could allow Kunitz to rejoin Malkin and Neal, but if Bennett can play like this consistently, that's such a huge boost for the roster.

As many others have suggested, if the Pens can go into the playoffs with a third line of Cooke-Sutter-Dupuis, that will be a great sign. Obviously that doesn't fix the issues cropping up defensively or on the PK as of late, but it would at least be a step in solidifying the team as a contender.

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03-10-2013, 01:46 AM
  #215
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Originally Posted by MtlPenFan View Post
It's incredible that every media outlet and fanbase OUTSIDE of Pittsburgh looks at him as anything but an overrated and erratic goalie, but it seems that nobody who roots for the Pens can ever do anything but find excuses for him.
Probably because we're the ones stuck with him for better or worse.

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Old
03-10-2013, 01:50 AM
  #216
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So, so true. I had originally thought a trade deadline rental could allow Kunitz to rejoin Malkin and Neal, but if Bennett can play like this consistently, that's such a huge boost for the roster.

As many others have suggested, if the Pens can go into the playoffs with a third line of Cooke-Sutter-Dupuis, that will be a great sign. Obviously that doesn't fix the issues cropping up defensively or on the PK as of late, but it would at least be a step in solidifying the team as a contender.
Agreed.

The Pens may possibly be developing a good skilled winger. Crazy. I wonder if Hell also froze over recently.

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03-10-2013, 03:04 AM
  #217
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We need a PKer who's got wheels and can be a threat to score. A top 6 forward so we can allow Dupuis to slide down with Sutter. Kulemin is the workhorse this team would greatly benefit from.

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03-10-2013, 03:45 AM
  #218
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I could see Shero going off this deadline like he did in 2008 with Hossa, Dupuis, Gill, and Adams.

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03-10-2013, 03:54 AM
  #219
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And a quicker release. Taking way to long to get gimme one timers off.
didnt he still have wrist issues after being called up? thought he was still trying to get strength for his wrist back. not shooting as much but had 5 shots tonight.

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03-10-2013, 03:55 AM
  #220
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I could see Shero going off this deadline like he did in 2008 with Hossa, Dupuis, Gill, and Adams.
I think so, too. He may never have a situation like this again where he essentially has unlimited cap space at/around the deadline. And for as much scorn as Pierre McGuire (often deservedly) draws, there's no denying he's good friends with Shero. So when he says that the Pens are looking to make a splash, there's probably some truth to it.

Is this team flawed right now? Absolutely. But outside of Boston, the rest of the East has some gaping holes as well. The Atlantic is undoubtedly down this season, and Shero has to try to take advantage of it. This next month is the time to roll the dice and make some moves.

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03-10-2013, 04:22 AM
  #221
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But for a few 'details'... I thought we played one of our very best games this season until there was something like 5-8 minutes left of regulation.
The top two lines were superb, with Sid in straight up demon mode, and Kunitz looking like a legit super star on some of his rushes with the puck. Bennett and Malkin looked special together also, could be a lot of good things coming from them, and like most here I couldn't be more impressed with Bennett in the past couple of games. The third line was OK'ish most of the time I though, except for faceoff losses leading to it not having the zone time you'd otherwise like.

D played largely very well ES, Letang was surreal going forward. Martin was excellent, and Despres looked just stellar in almost everything he did.

No way this should not have been a comfortable regulation win.... but....

PK: Just terrible. Must change. Both its system/structure and perhaps we also have to add a piece or two to solidify it for the playoffs. Lets not forget that Michalek was our best defender on the PK before this season.
Fleury: Gotta ask for more than that. Toronto had so few actual scoring chances that he cannot allow four. Less so as hardly any of them were of the 'no chance' variety.

4th line.... yeah, Glass is doing pretty much nothing for me either, and having no Vitale on it is just meaningless.

Biggest gripe after this game though:

1: WHY does Despres look THAT awesome and then he gets 12.20 in a game that goes to the shoot out? He looks, at worst, to be our third best defender. And we cannot even give him quality minutes when we look dominant and up by two? We cannot distribute ice time more evenly when we have a back to back weekend?

2: Letang on the PP. 6.14 minutes. More than any other Pens player. And he is just so, so bad when it comes to doing anything of consequence. Sure he can skate and have a share in us moving the puck around for ages, but he cannot make a pass to set up a one-timer, he cannot hit the net, he cannot execute either a shot or a pass without hesitation and/or double clutch.... I can understand giving Sid and Geno license to stay out there as long as they have lungs for it, but Niskanen and Despres deserve to get time there when Letang is not executing, and he has been really bad on the PP in most games. Stop treating him as if his ES production makes him a good PP player. He isn't one yet.

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Old
03-10-2013, 07:37 AM
  #222
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Anyone blaming the defense should watch the game again. Toronto was getting no zone time. The Penguins either had the puck in the offensive zone, or were in processing of getting it there. That was as dominating a defensive performance as we've seen from them this year.

Yet, we give up 4 goals. The problem continues to be between the pipes. Anyone who watches lots of hockey should see this. If doesn't matter how much they clog the system up, something always manages to leak through.

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03-10-2013, 08:03 AM
  #223
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Hopefully Malkins upper-body injury is only a precautionary method and he'll only miss 1 game. Crosby is on fire right now. 1.6PPG clip. That's insane.

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03-10-2013, 08:27 AM
  #224
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Originally Posted by Rowdy Roddy Peeper View Post
I could not have asked for more from Bennett to this point. I love watching the kid play.

Like Jig said, that long area saucer for Geno was a beauty, not to mention his pass that nearly sent Neal on a breakaway. He's creating chances left and right, and he isn't even attempting high-risk plays to do it.

A young, skilled RH shot wing cost-controlled at under a mil for the next 3 years. It's like some sort of wonderful dream.
ya, he's a keeper for sure. I am happy to say I was wrong about BB being a good fit for Neal and Geno. Neal just needs to play a bit more along the boards to make it really work.

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Old
03-10-2013, 08:34 AM
  #225
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Anyone blaming the defense should watch the game again. Toronto was getting no zone time. The Penguins either had the puck in the offensive zone, or were in processing of getting it there. That was as dominating a defensive performance as we've seen from them this year.

Yet, we give up 4 goals. The problem continues to be between the pipes. Anyone who watches lots of hockey should see this. If doesn't matter how much they clog the system up, something always manages to leak through.
Nothing is ever "clogged up." Hell, I sat there and watched Toronto possess the puck for probably 3/4 of that overtime.

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