Thanks to the Olympics this afternoon’s Valentine matinee 1PM game against the Nashville Predators is the last Penguin game until March. That being said the Pens should leave it all on the table as they try to take down a Predator team that is barely hanging onto a playoff spot in the western conference. Unfortunately I believe that the penguin players who will be boarding a plane immediately after the game headed to the Olympics will be playing safer than usual.
I know there are a bunch of fans that do not like Pittburgh players and other NHL players going to the Olympics because of the possibility of them getting hurt, I am not one of them. While hockey for the last month has been interesting with players pulling their punches against their soon to be Olympic teammates, it to me is well worth it for the quality of hockey I will get to see in the next two weeks.
The Penguins have been releasing Olympic pictures for you computer desktop, I haven’t seen the USA Orpik one yet, but the Canada and Russia ones are kind of scary, especially Fleury’s. I’ve never seen him look anything near that cleaned up before. You can get them here: Penguin Olympic Wallpapers
BTW: Martin Brodeur, one of the Canadian goaltenders that Fleury is competing with got pulled again last night after letting in a few to many goals to the last place Hurricanes.
For the records I believe Slovakia is going to win it all. I will be routing for USA though I do not like the job Burke has done, but will leave him alone for now because of his family problems.
I know that Gonchar said that there is no resentment over Ovechkin’s cheap play in the playoffs last season, but I bet he passes to other players first and uses Ovechkin as a last resort pass. I haven’t followed the Russian team that much but I know at different times Ovechkin has made enemies with many of the players, including Malkin. It will be interesting to see how that plays out.
It seemed to me that the moment Gaborik didn’t set foot back on the ice in the second period of last game, the Penguins figured that they had the game won and stopped playing.
The Penguins brought up John Curry from the AHL yesterday. The main problem with Brent Johnson as backup goaltender is his wild play and the injuries that result from it. He is a good goaltender, but the Pens need a backup that will not be getting injured every time he is needed.
Washington coach Boudreau said that the Capital’s winning streak was more impressive than the Penguins 17 in a row by the Penguins “In the age of the salary cap, there’s no easy games to play. So I would have to say that 17 games for Pittsburgh 1992-93 might have been a tad easier or the 15 games for the Islanders in the 1980s was easier than what we did in 2010.” Not to quash the idiot Boudreau’s comment but 10 of the 14 games the Capitals won were against teams that currently do not hold a playoff spot. If he wants impressive, in 1996-1997 the Penguins went undefeated 14 games in a row with a 3rd string goaltender.
OK, while I am on the subject, the Capitals are #1 in the conference because their inflated numbers from being in a division where not one other team in it holds a playoff spot. They have only lost 1 of the 15 games they have played against them. Against the teams the Penguins play against in the Atlantic division the Capitals have lost 6 of 15.
This is the only game that the Penguins play this season against the Predators, I’m sorry but there is absolutely nothing interesting about this team. Their leading scorer has 4 less combined goals and assists than Crosby has goals.
Game time is 1pm and can be seen in HD at the Igloo or on FSN Pittsburgh. Go Pens!