Few jobs in professional sports come with more pressure—and less security—than coaching in the National Hockey League. Indeed, the average tenure of an NHL head coach is 2.4 years, according to a 2014 study published by Peter Tanner on FiveThirtyEight.
Coaching our Penguins? Given the expectations that throb like an extended hangover in the [...]
From the moment he first skated onto an NHL rink as a callow 19-year-old, Marc-Andre Fleury flashed the extraordinary flexibility and cat-like reflexes that had pro scouts drooling. Attributes that encouraged then-Penguins GM Craig Patrick—seeking a franchise goalie—to trade up in the 2003 Entry Draft to take the Cape Breton marvel No. 1 over [...]
To everything there is a season.
While it may seem odd to open a blog post with a Bible verse (Ecclesiastes 3:1), it is appropriate. Everything in our world runs in cycles. The four seasons, for example. Winter, spring, summer, and fall. A time to plant and a time to harvest.
The same holds true for hockey teams. They run in cycles, too. Ther [...]
I’ll say this for Penguins GM Jim Rutherford. He ain’t afraid to roll the dice.
Displaying the brass of a riverboat gambler, JR wrested center Nick Bonino and defenseman Adam Clendening from Vancouver for third-line center Brandon Sutter. The black and gold also received the Canucks’ second-round pick in 2016 in exchange for [...]
Just when you thought it was safe to toss your old Ben Lovejoy jersey, GM Jim Rutherford pulled off two buzzer-beaters at the trade deadline.
Seeking to improve the Penguins’ defense for the postseason, JR swapped rugged Robert Bortuzzo and a 7th-round pick in the upcoming draft to St. Louis for sturdy Ian Cole. He followed up by dealing tal [...]
Sidney Crosby’s on-ice achievements are truly awe-inspiring. Two Art Ross Trophies, two Hart Trophies, three Ted Lindsay/Lester Pearson Awards, and a Stanley Cup. Enough lesser trophies, all-star selections and awards to fill a small museum. Along with his stats—a staggering 821 points in 596 NHL games—they speak of a sure-fire Hall-of-Famer. [...]
Watching Blake Comeau circumnavigate the Colorado Avalanche not once but twice before scoring the winning goal in overtime on Thursday night was the perfect ending to a near-perfect 60 minutes of hockey.
The Penguins fired off a season-high 48 shots. They outhit the Avs. For good measure, they blocked 13 shots. Or, as Dan Bylsma used to say [...]
Few teams endured more upheaval over the summer than the Pittsburgh Penguins. In a shakeup of seismic proportions, the black and gold replaced their long-time coach and GM, allowed several key performers to depart through free-agency, and traded away a 40-goal man.
It may have been worth it.
While the 2014-15 NHL season is only a month old, t [...]
Back in the day, Ivory Soap boasted that it was so pure it wouldn’t leave a bathtub ring. As presently constructed the Penguins’ defense could make a similar claim. It won’t leave a mark.
Losing rugged Robert Bortuzzo to injury certainly hasn’t helped. In his absence GM Jim Rutherford assembled a defense that’s built for the Autobahn, not NHL [...]
Penguins GM Jim Rutherford announced today that he hired Mike Johnston as the team’s new coach, ending a prolonged three-week search that began when Dan Bylsma was fired on June 6 and included at least one much-publicized swing and miss.
Rutherford also announced that one-time Pens power forward Rick Tocchet joined the club as an assistant co [...]