There was a time in the not-too-distant past when Pittsburgh Penguins opponents hated visiting the Steel City. Not only would they have to face a lethal lineup featuring hungry young stars such as Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, but they knew they’d absorb more than a few bumps and bruises, too.
Now it seems, opponents are having far too eas [...]
… the Penguins remind me an awful lot of last season’s Stanley Cup winners, the Chicago Blackhawks. They’re playing with the same mix of speed, skill and grit, not to mention confidence, focus and desire.
… Ray Shero should win his second straight General Manager of the Year award. Not only did the wily GM keep the team’s talented core intact [...]
When the Penguins and Flyers resume the Commonwealth Cold War in Philadelphia on Thursday night, it’ll be the definitive case of two foes headed in opposite directions. While the Pens have zoomed to the top of the Metropolitan Division, the Flyers are off to a ghastly 1-6 start.
Indeed, the Pens are firing on all cylinders while Philadelphia [...]
For my fourth and final installment on the toughest Penguins ever, I’ve listed the guys I’d most want to have with me if I were entering a dark alley.
1. Bob “Battleship” Kelly (1974-77) As a 27-year-old rookie with St. Louis, Kelly beat reigning heavyweight king Dave Schultz twice in a preseason game. Able to intimidate foes simply by skatin [...]
The Penguins have employed their share of pests—the thorn-in-the-side guys who make a living out of irritating the opposition. Here are my top seven:
1. Bryan Watson (1969-74) Watson wasn’t nicknamed “Bugsy” and “Superpest” for nothing. Like his partner in crime, Glen Sather, the tough little defender excelled at getting under the oppositions [...]
The Dirty (Half) Dozen features the Penguins players who were most likely to stray over the boundaries of fair and gentlemanly play. Needless to say, none was ever a candidate for the Lady Byng Trophy.
1. Steve Durbano (1974-76) A wild man on skates, “Demolition Durby” was renowned for his razor-edge temper and unpredictability. Aptly describ [...]
A while back I noticed that Seth Rorabaugh of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette had asked the readers of his blog to list their toughest Penguins of all-time. With nothing in particular to write about (always a dangerous thing), I decided to compile my own list of toughest Penguins by category, starting with the Hardest Hitters.
Here’s my top five [...]
As a hockey fan who’s grown disenchanted with the Pittsburgh Penguins’ erratic team defense—particularly during the playoffs—I’ve often wished the Pens could figure a way to implant a Michel Therrien chip into Dan Bylsma’s noggin. Then the black and gold would have the best of both worlds—an upbeat, popular coach who could instill in his troo [...]