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The Penguins Need a Quick Adjustment – Pittsburgh Penguins – PenguinPoop Blog

The Penguins Need a Quick Adjustment

I have been a Penguin fan for 40 years.  I have had season tickets for 37 years. Watching the performance of this team in game 3 has to be the low point of the 40 years for me.

A part of being a Penguin fan has  always included hating the Flyers. We hated the Flyers because of the stupid and childish things that they did. On Sunday I had to watch the Pens do stupid and childish things. The stupid things are too numerous to mention. The most childish act was Crosby knocking the Flyer’s glove away. He should be ashamed of himself. This is certainly no way for the captain of a hockey team to behave. I understand the frustration of being the Stanley Cup “favorite” and getting embarassed by your cross-state rival, but please have a little class.

It is very hard to have the Flyer fans call the Pens babies and be correct. If they think that these behaviors are bad, what must they think of their own team. The stupid and classless thing that their players and organization have been involved in are also too numerous to mention.

Surely Mario is upset by this performance. Here’s hoping that he does something about it.
Now to the source of the team’s frustration and why they are down 3-0 in the series.

  1. MAF  .798 a number that will give him nightmares. I know the play in front of him has not been good, but c’mon make a key save instead of putting the puck in your own net or coughing of rebounds on shots that should be easy to control. Hockey is a game of momentum and every time the Pens had some he gave it away. He will have to make 86 straight saves to get his GAA up to .900. If this happens they can win the next  4 games.
  2. Special Teams   I said in my preseries prediction that they needed as much 5 on 5 play as possible’ They did not make that happen.  The Flyers exposed weaknesses in the PK and PP. Dan Bylsma and staff never made the the necessary adjustments.  The Flyers PP burned the Pens all year and the staff did nothing to fix the PK.
  3. Linesman  in game 1     Briere’s goal in game 1 was so far offside that the linesman had to have a complete brain freeze to miss it. As I said hockey is a game of momentum and this gave the Flyers their first push. The  subsequent actions are on the Pens, but who knows. No goal there, win game 1, maybe we have a different series.
  4. Composure.  As much as the Pens talked about this being a key, they continued to lose theirs. This was supposed to be a plus. Watch the Flyers rookies melt. The wrong team melted
  5. Bylsma  Since winning the cup the Pens have won 1 playoff series. In fact blowing 3-2 and 3-1 series leads in the last 2 years and now this debacle. I’m not sure if it’s time to replace him or not but one more failure will be his last. Special team failure and losing composure is on him.
  6. Defensive  lapses    Somehow the Pens have never learned how to cover the player that they are responsible for. Another mark against Bylsma.
  7. #71   No goals This is unacceptable for the 50 goal scoring Art Ross trophy winner

I can’t believe that after all of the work that went into this season that this is how it is going to end.  Show up on Wednesday and play hockey. Maybe something good will happen.

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6 Comments

  1. Rick Buker's Gravatar Rick Buker
    April 18, 2012 at 12:03 am | Permalink

    I spoke with a friend of mine, Evan Freshwater, who played high school hockey for Montour and also for a junior Pens team. Since he’s the most knowledgeable hockey guy I know, I wanted to get his take on things. His responses both surprised me and clarified things a bit.

    Evan feels the Penguins’ attack style is the most effective way to beat Philly (as opposed to a trap or a left wing lock)—when they operate as a five-man unit. The problem is the Pens aren’t doing that. Because of the way the Flyers are using the stretch pass, it’s caused our defense to become tentative about joining the rush. This, in turn, has opened up a gap between our forwards and our d-men, and Philly’s exploiting this gap to create odd-man breaks.

    Evan supports Dan Bylsma’s assertions that the Pens just need “to get to their game” and execute their system better. However, he also pointed out—based on certain player’s comments (most notably Brooks Orpik)—the entire team isn’t buying in. So instead of operating as a cohesive five-man unit, the Pens have been split into two distinct on-ice groups (the forwards and the ‘d’) operating independently of each other.

    At least for me, it explains why the Pens have looked so ragged and disjointed. It also provides a clearer picture of what they need to do going forward …

  2. 55 on point's Gravatar 55 on point
    April 16, 2012 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

    Good points. Everything you say is true and then some (see some power points I posted elsewhere on this site last week). I’m a long-time hockey fan, too, but without shame or regret, I kind of liked it yesterday, as distasteful as I might have found it during the regular season. This is the Stanley Cup tournament and if you don’t go down punching some heads, switch to ballet next season. That’s the state of the NHL whether we agree with it or not. This year there have been more suspensions in the post-season than any post-season I can remember. Yesterday the Pens showed some life. Misguided as it may have been, it was a good thing, even as I previously listed avoiding that very thing as one of my points. As I watched yesterday I was cheering them on and feeling justified knowing that if the shoe was on the other foot Philly would be doing the same thing. And, who knows? Maybe it will galvanize them enough to win a game or two before it’s over. I’d like that as well. This IS a good team that owes it to themselves to make a showing. This series has been a failure from the top down but they have an opportunity to wipe away a bit of the tarnish come Wednesday. Let’s hope they do just that. And, I know it may be perceived as whining, but if Briere is whistled off side, this IS a different series at 2-1.

  3. April 16, 2012 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

    Excellent article, with great observations. I especially like your pick-up on Bylsma. He seems like a super guy, and the players really seem to love him. But he seems utterly unable to make meaningful adjustments. It’s like the Pens put all their eggs in one basket, and when that basket breaks … well …

    • TANGER58's Gravatar TANGER58
      April 17, 2012 at 7:54 am | Permalink

      Agree on the issue Bylsma has on adjusting to different situations. He always says “We have to get back to our game.” Which sounds like a great idea in theory, but a coach needs to adjust or tweak things when needed.

  4. April 16, 2012 at 3:01 pm | Permalink

    I have been a fan from day one and I am feeling the same way you are. The Pens have the talent and the class to rise above this and get the job done-let’s hope they do. As you said, it would be a very sad way to end a great season. This won’t change my loyalty or passion for the game but I sure hope the right team shows up on Wednesday. Go Pens!

  5. hapes's Gravatar hapes
    April 16, 2012 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    I think the glove thing was just gamesmanship. I don’t have a problem with it. The rest of it, yeah, it’s time for a smack upside the head.


            

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