Benching Fleury Solves Only One of Penguins Many Problems – Pittsburgh Penguins – PenguinPoop Blog

Benching Fleury Solves Only One of Penguins Many Problems

While Penguins goaltender Marc-André Fleury has rightfully bore the brunt of the load for last nights loss.  The puck doesn’t stop there.  Literally and figuratively.

vokounPenguins coach Dan Bylsma sat before reporters last night and was asked “.. is there any thought to putting Vokoun in for game five?”  After he him-hawed around for 5 minutes and proceeded to list every goal Fleury let in and mentioning how Fleury managed to let them in on so few amount of shots, Bylsma somehow avoided the question.  Or so he thought.

A second later he was asked again. “Any thought to a change of goalie?”

Certainly you know a Thomas Vokoun’s a guy that can step in and play and has had success..” Bylsma proceeded with his spiel “and won hockey games against this team (Islanders) and has been successful this year..”  He continued to avoid the question again, but everyone had heard what they needed to hear.

I have heard Bylsma’s “spiels” for years now.  Barring injury, Thomas Vokoun will be in net on Thursday night in Pittsburgh.  Thomas Vokoun has had an incredible record against the Islanders this season only allowing 3 goals on 101 shots.  That’s .970 save percentage.  It wouldn’t be out of the question to ask why he wasn’t in net to begin with.

Changing the goaltender is only a stop gap measure for a laundry list of problems the Penguins are having. If it’s all right with you I’m going to rattle them off.

The Penguins defense is playing way too soft.  It’s not that they’re not hitting.  Watch when the Islanders stream into the Penguins end of the ice.  The Penguins defense is not challenging them until they are at the top of the circles in the defensive end.  By then the Islanders are close enough to get off quality shots and quick rebounds.  The Islanders forwards must be challenged sooner.

The Penguins can’t get the puck out of their own end.  Orpik, Letang and Malkin all had easy plays out and all three tried to force passes out that ended up getting intercepted and resulted in Islanders goals.  Malkin’s was especially noticeable because he had an extremely easy bounce pass up the boards.  It’s time to go back to the basics.

pp0386Malkin, Malkin, Malkin.  It’s all about Malkin.  He needs to control his emotions.  One of the stupid penalties he took resulted in a powerplay goal for the Islanders.  While he’s tied for the lead scorer in the playoffs, he must be better emotionally.  Which by the way I have a way to fix that I will be exploring on PenguinPoop toMorrow.

It’s not just Malkin.  The Penguins are skating like they should automatically be handed the Stanley Cup. They have fallen for the hype.  They have drunken the proverbial Kool Aid. You have three seasoned Captains on this team.  Crosby, Iginla & Morrow.  You also have 3 assistant Captains, Orpik, Kunitz & Malkin.  All six of these guys should be leading by example.

I’m saving the worst for last.  Prevent defense.  Two words that should never be allowed side by side in Pittsburgh.  It has never worked.  Never, never ever.  Using a phrase like “the best defense is a good offense” has worked and will work.  The Penguins have their best defensive forwards sitting in the press box.  Kennedy & Vitale.  If your not playing them, you can’t go into a prevent.  This is Bylsma’s responsibility & problem to fix.

Look at the goals scored last night.  Letang tipped one in top shelf, one tipped in off Murray’s skate, 3 really stupid outlet passes and a idiotic Matt Cooke Penalty.  Fleury’s horrid play in net is not the only reason the Penguins lost.

The Penguins organization and 95% of Penguin’s fans plus the 5% who are lying have underestimated the Islanders.  Hopefully the Penguins can right the ship of what is now a 3 game series before it sinks.

Shop.NHL.com Outlet


  1. Nick Denny's Gravatar Nick Denny
    May 9, 2013 at 8:56 am | Permalink

    Phil Krundle Is watching the same games as I am and he is bang on. I love the Penguins and before it’s to late they must fix the way they defend. This team has to do this right now. I want them to succeed and they should with the skilled they have, but defending better has to be their main focus. If not we will be hoping for better results next season. Playing the right way has too include defence.

  2. Matt's Gravatar Matt
    May 8, 2013 at 6:12 pm | Permalink

    We will not win any series with Fleury in goal…..
    He should have sat long ago and it wouldn’t, hurt my feelings to let
    Him walk next year.

  3. Mike's Gravatar Mike
    May 8, 2013 at 4:26 pm | Permalink

    great read. the teams horrible play is hanging fleury out to dry as always. tip ins and shots he couldnt see. 1 bad goal, and one bad luck. voky will ready the ship. lets go pens

  4. May 8, 2013 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

    Who* sorry.

  5. May 8, 2013 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

    No. Move Iggy to Sid’s line, and Kunitz to Malkin’s line. How are you going to play for Geno? Tyler Kennedy? lol

  6. May 8, 2013 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

    Do you mean like the countless mistakes by Marc Andre Fleury all series?

  7. 55 on point's Gravatar 55 on point
    May 8, 2013 at 3:32 pm | Permalink


  8. May 8, 2013 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

    People who do not blame Fleury for these losses have bandwagon beer goggles on. How many shots did he face last night? 24? He let 6 of those get past him? And how many were softies? How many has he scored for the Islanders this series? How many times was he out of position? If you subtract all of #29’s mistakes and softies, we are already planning for round 2.

  9. May 8, 2013 at 3:21 pm | Permalink

    Article is right on the money…but giving up soft goals (as Fleury has) brings down the morale of the team. He is a veteran goalie with a Stanley Cup ring…he needs to step it up. The past two games have been a disgrace to watch, regardless of the defense, penalties, etc.

  10. May 8, 2013 at 2:36 pm | Permalink

    Nick ur a friggin idiot if u want 5 and 6 goals put up against us every night fleury hasn’t been a playoff goalie since we won the cup he’s a head case

  11. George's Gravatar George
    May 8, 2013 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

    Great move

  12. May 8, 2013 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

    I like it. He’s good against NY. Could have swept if we started him.

  13. Carrie's Gravatar Carrie
    May 8, 2013 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

    Put Iggy inn Sid’s line!

  14. Carrie's Gravatar Carrie
    May 8, 2013 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

    Scratch Malkin for game 5

  15. May 8, 2013 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

    Huge huge huge humungus mistake by coach bylsma

    • Anonymous's Gravatar Anonymous
      May 8, 2013 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

      Bylsma fails to see the flaws in Fleury,s game and it may have cost us a chance
      At the Cup.
      It also might cost him his job!

      Let,s hope that doesn’t,t happen.

  16. RINIJG's Gravatar RINIJG
    May 8, 2013 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

    It is official. Vokoun in net in game 5. The fans may have underestimated the Islanders, but the players who are professional should not have. We are our own worst enemy. Get back to basics. Tighten up on defense and our offense will take care of the rest. LETS GO PENS!


Follow PenguinPoop

Shop.NHL.com Outlet

PenguinPoop Unique Visitors