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National Hockey League Talk Discuss NHL players, teams, games, and the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Realistically who can challenge the Penguins?

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Old
12-13-2016, 11:29 PM
  #76
AOSC
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I knew when there were hundreds of people doubting the Wild this year that they were wrong... that said it's hard to say what they will be. Moving on to the Penguins topic to the OP now... A 7 game series is a long series. When the Penguins played the Wild, they were Awful, especially Letang. But when the Penguins are at their best, no one IMO will stop them. Maybe the first team to repeat in a long time.

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Old
12-13-2016, 11:31 PM
  #77
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In the East? Only the Flyers and Rangers. Maybe Montreal if Price is godly.

West? Probably nobody.

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Old
12-13-2016, 11:32 PM
  #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pavel Buchnevich View Post
I don't know how much of the Rangers you have watched or what you are going by with your assessment, but Staal and Girardi have not been close to our biggest problem. They've both been pretty good, Kevin Klein has been way more of a liability than either. He's been our only real problem on defense, and even he has started to play better recently.

We don't have the offensive difference makers that you guys have, but I would point out that I think we have more offensive depth. When everyone is healthy, we have 9 top 6 forwards, and 3 other third line forwards. I think our offense is pretty equal to yours because of that. I just checked the goals per game column, and you were leading us for first by .02 coming into today. Might be .03 or .04 after today because we only scored 1 goal against Chicago, but I think both offenses are pretty close when you add it all up. The Penguins and Rangers have two of the top 5 best offenses in the league.

On defense, I just don't agree with you. I think you are underrating Staal and Girardi. The rest of our defense has also done a good job. McDonagh's had a very good season, Skjei's been very good for a rookie, Holden's had a very good season. Klein's rounding into form. Not a great defense, but we're 6th best in GAA with a struggling goalie, so I think there's some misinformation out there about our defense. Your defense is 21st best in the league, so there's evidence that your defense has been struggling, although I wouldn't say thats convincing evidence that your defense will struggle in the playoffs. I don't think either defense is great, but they don't need to be. As long as they hold up, which I think both can, both teams should be able to play well. In goal, its all a guess. Lundqvist has struggled. If he gets back to his best, he's better than Murray. If he continues to struggle, you guys might even have an advantage.

I don't know if we would beat you guys, but I think it would be close this year. I also would rather not play you guys. You guys are the only team that I really don't want to play in the playoffs. Every other team I think we are better team. I'm not sure if we are better than Pittsburgh this year.
After watching the Rangers play in last year's playoffs and the regular season vs the Pens, IDK how you can say Lundqvist is as good as Murray. You're just going by his reputation. Pens have the superior C, RW, D, and G.

Pens lack good LW but Sheary is on pace for 60 points and there's also Hagelin and Kunitz so it's not so bad.

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Old
12-13-2016, 11:34 PM
  #79
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Caps, Bolts are likely the only teams that can beat the Pens in the playoffs.

Flyers have had a lot of success in Pgh but I think Pens would sweep them in a PO series.

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Old
12-13-2016, 11:36 PM
  #80
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Blackhawks or Kings. If the Kings don't make it then I'd love to see a Hawks/Pens Final.

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Old
12-13-2016, 11:37 PM
  #81
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Anything can happen in the playoffs. I would give any of these Eastern teams a chance against Pens: Montreal, Rangers, lightning, capitals, even blue jackets maybe. Goaltending is always a big factor, and it's hard to bet against a healthy Price.

I don't watch the West enough to judge who the heavyweights are right now

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Old
12-13-2016, 11:38 PM
  #82
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Originally Posted by Alluckks View Post
Classic quality post from a HFB Partner.
Bruins are arguably the best team at even strength this season, if they take less penalties (a lot less) yes, they have the ability to challenge the penguins.

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Old
12-13-2016, 11:42 PM
  #83
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Isn't it a little early for a jinx thread?

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Old
12-13-2016, 11:45 PM
  #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pavel Buchnevich View Post
we have 9 top 6 forwards, .
No you don't. You have Zucc, Stepan, Kreider, Nash, Zibanejed, and Hayes who are all top six forwards. Vesey is on his way to being a solid player and a top six forward. Also, let's see what happens when Zibanejed goes into a drought or Kreider goes through one of his typical cold droughts. Also, Rick Nash sucks in the playoffs.

That'd be like Pens fans saying they have 9 top 6 forwards because Brian Rust and Kunitz are on their third line.

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Old
12-13-2016, 11:48 PM
  #85
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Originally Posted by pixiesfanyo View Post
No you don't. You have Zucc, Stepan, Kreider, Nash, Zibanejed, and Hayes who are all top six forwards. Vesey is on his way to being a solid player and a top six forward. Also, let's see what happens when Zibanejed goes into a drought or Kreider goes through one of his typical cold droughts. Also, Rick Nash sucks in the playoffs.

That'd be like Pens fans saying they have 9 top 6 forwards because Brian Rust and Kunitz are on their third line.
This has already happened. I don't know about compartmentalizing everything into 1st/2nd line/Top6/Top9, but our offense is very good. Not necessarily better than the Penguins but it's around the top in the NHL. The Penguins are basically what the Rangers management should be striving for right now. NYR have a ton of depth, speed, and skill, but they don't have the puck-movers on defense. Kreider-Zibanejad-Buchnevich had crazy chemistry but injures at various points in the season broke that line up very early; just an aside.

I agree with the other poster that we don't have the advantage in goal anymore. I don't expect the Rangers to win anything or go that far this year, I just wanted them to be fun to watch, which they are. Never know about the trade deadline though. If I could see anyone upsetting the Penguins, (figuratively and literally), it would be Philly, although I could also just as easily see Pittsburgh flattening them.

It's December though...

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Old
12-13-2016, 11:55 PM
  #86
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I don't get how everyone is forgetting Chicago.

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Old
12-14-2016, 12:00 AM
  #87
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I don't get how everyone is forgetting Chicago.
Because a lot of things have to go right for that to happen. Unless OP means just the best team in general and not a SCF match-up.

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Old
12-14-2016, 12:03 AM
  #88
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Originally Posted by Pavel Buchnevich View Post
We don't have the offensive difference makers that you guys have, but I would point out that I think we have more offensive depth. When everyone is healthy, we have 9 top 6 forwards, and 3 other third line forwards. I think our offense is pretty equal to yours because of that.
We're scratching Eric Fehr and have no room to call up Jake Guentzel (3 goals/4 points in 5 NHL games) and Oscar Sundqvist (shut down center with 11 goals/21 points in 22 games in the AHL). I don't think there's anything to really differentiate in terms of depth. Our worst forward -arguably is Chris Kunitz (certainly relative to his contract) and he is obviously at least a credible 3rd liner.
Our top guys just create a bigger gap to the others than yours. This is not saying that the Rangers don't have great forward depth - obviously you do - I just don't think our superior elite players are cancelled out by depth. That was something one could argue back in the Bylsma days when our 4th line was populated with plugs like Glass and frigging Craig Adams. Now it is Matt Cullen, Eric Fehr and/or hungry talented youngsters. Much different.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pavel Buchnevich View Post
I just checked the goals per game column, and you were leading us for first by .02 coming into today. Might be .03 or .04 after today because we only scored 1 goal against Chicago, but I think both offenses are pretty close when you add it all up. The Penguins and Rangers have two of the top 5 best offenses in the league.
Yeah - but 15 games ago the Rangers led us by a goal per game (or something like that) and had by far the highest shooting percentages in the league. Seems we're trending in different directions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pavel Buchnevich View Post
I don't know if we would beat you guys, but I think it would be close this year. I also would rather not play you guys. You guys are the only team that I really don't want to play in the playoffs. Every other team I think we are better team. I'm not sure if we are better than Pittsburgh this year.
I think we can lose to many teams, Rangers being one of them. I don't think anyone can beat us in a 7 game series if we play to the same level we did in the Spring - and are playing right now.
As for the Rangers - in terms of points per game the Rangers are right now 4th in the Metro, just one win up on a Philly team running a 9 game win streak.
As is also the case for the Pens, I think we need to see a lot more division games before anyone can really say what is up or down in terms of strength and match-ups this season. And anyway, any team is just a key injury or two away from losing likely contender status, so luck is always a major factor also.

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Old
12-14-2016, 12:04 AM
  #89
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As a #2 defenseman?
No, in the Top 6.

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12-14-2016, 12:05 AM
  #90
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As is also the case for the Pens, I think we need to see a lot more division games before anyone can really say what is up or down in terms of strength and match-ups this season. And anyway, any team is just a key injury or two away from losing likely contender status, so luck is always a major factor also.
Yeah some of the dust in the Metro really needs to settle, it's a little bananas right now.

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No, in the Top 6.
We don't use him as a #6 defenseman. He gets to ride shotgun with McDonagh. Way too much ice-time.

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Old
12-14-2016, 12:08 AM
  #91
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If history tells us anything, they'll blow it in round ala 1993/2010.

I don't think lightning strikes twice in the spring for their goaltending.

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Old
12-14-2016, 12:10 AM
  #92
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Originally Posted by aufheben View Post
Yeah some of the dust in the Metro really needs to settle, it's a little bananas right now.

We don't use him as a #6 defenseman. He gets to ride shotgun with McDonagh.
Okay, doesn't negate the point I wanted to make. People take our fanbase's angst towards Girardi and turn it into the perception he isn't even NHL caliber somehow.

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Old
12-14-2016, 12:13 AM
  #93
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Originally Posted by Tender Rip View Post
We're scratching Eric Fehr and have no room to call up Jake Guentzel (3 goals/4 points in 5 NHL games) and Oscar Sundqvist (shut down center with 11 goals/21 points in 22 games in the AHL). I don't think there's anything to really differentiate in terms of depth. Our worst forward -arguably is Chris Kunitz (certainly relative to his contract) and he is obviously at least a credible 3rd liner.
Our top guys just create a bigger gap to the others than yours. This is not saying that the Rangers don't have great forward depth - obviously you do - I just don't think our superior elite players are cancelled out by depth. That was something one could argue back in the Bylsma days when our 4th line was populated with plugs like Glass and frigging Craig Adams. Now it is Matt Cullen, Eric Fehr and/or hungry talented youngsters. Much different.



Yeah - but 15 games ago the Rangers led us by a goal per game (or something like that) and had by far the highest shooting percentages in the league. Seems we're trending in different directions.



I think we can lose to many teams, Rangers being one of them. I don't think anyone can beat us in a 7 game series if we play to the same level we did in the Spring - and are playing right now.
As for the Rangers - in terms of points per game the Rangers are right now 4th in the Metro, just one win up on a Philly team running a 9 game win streak.
As is also the case for the Pens, I think we need to see a lot more division games before anyone can really say what is up or down in terms of strength and match-ups this season. And anyway, any team is just a key injury or two away from losing likely contender status, so luck is always a major factor also.
Narrowing a margin does not equate to a trend. Rangers also have 3 top 6 forwards out with injury right now.

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Old
12-14-2016, 12:14 AM
  #94
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Okay, doesn't negate the point I wanted to make. People take our fanbase's angst towards Girardi and turn it into the perception he isn't even NHL caliber somehow.
Yeah but Penguins fans have seen plenty of Dan Girardi for themselves.

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Old
12-14-2016, 12:23 AM
  #95
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Wait, didn't this thread pop up like 3 weeks ago? With the same replies.

It's december. The games that matter start in April. Considering the entire Metro division is red hot why don't you wait till then to make some bold calls?

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Old
12-14-2016, 12:26 AM
  #96
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Originally Posted by Alluckks View Post
Narrowing a margin does not equate to a trend.
Going back to and including the H2H games that we split, the Rangers have scored 40 goals in their last 16 games as opposed to 66 in their first 15.
The Pens in the same period have scored 66 goals in 14 games compared to 38 in their first 15.

So, there's that.

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Old
12-14-2016, 12:29 AM
  #97
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Teams never repeat cup wins anymore so I'm assuming someone else will beat them. Not even having that great of a year yet

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Old
12-14-2016, 12:40 AM
  #98
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I watched the Capitals crush the Penguins 7-1 in Nov.
Nothing is a given in hockey on who will be the champs until it's over.

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Old
12-14-2016, 12:43 AM
  #99
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Let me guess. Pens fan? Thought so. Anyway, Washington (once the PP gets going), Montreal, and others should keep it close. Pens haven't struck me as the top team so far. That seems to be MTL as of now, but that could change. NYR might be a challenger too. I can't think of the top western team. Usually that's Chicago, but I haven't paid too much attention to them yet, so idk.
illpucks is the farthest thing from a Pens fan you can find. He just has a weird obsession with posting about the Pens/Crosby.

So I hope people aren't reading this thread as though it's a Pens fan that is boasting. It's essentially a "reverse jinx" thread made by someone who isn't a fan of the Pens.

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Old
12-14-2016, 12:44 AM
  #100
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'Member when there was a thread about Montreal winning the cup last year in December and then Price got hurt and they missed the playoffs?

I 'Member.

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