[Courtsey of FSN and PENS UNIVERSE]
0-24 last year? Must have blacked out. God.
Who would've thought a 5-2 win against the Thrashers on January 5th would be comparable to sex?
But that's what it is.
Although it's difficult to give this game a lot of weight.
Atlanta has now lost 9 straight.
Compared to the recent teams the Pens have faced, the Thrashers are butt crust.
But a win is a win.
Jordan Staal is on a different level. With Bingo and Geno busy making hotel arrangements for Vancouver, Staal has arguably been the Pens' most solid player the last 10 games.
It was nice to see a guy like Caputi, playing for the injured Chris Kunitz, get a goal.
That is why we hated Chris Bourque so bad. He didn't do shit. It took Caputi a shift to show up.
(Stay tuned after the jump for a beautiful Chris Bourque story.)
A big test for the Pens looms on the horizon.
After the Flyers at the Mellon on Thursday, the Pens go back on the road.
As we all remember, the last time the Pens hit up Western Canada, it was a good time.
Welcome to those of you who have managed to avoid leaping off of the nearest bridge.
With the trade rumors and speculation about coaching changes that been swirling around in the past few days, you'd think the situation was completely hopeless.
It's not like it's the middle of February and the Pens are out of a playoff spot.
THAT situation would truly be hopeless and there would be no chance of recovering from that in any way.
Chris Kunitz is having abdominal surgery and will miss 4-6 weeks of action.
According to Empty Netters, "Kunitz was initially injured approximately three months ago and the ailment progressed gradually to the point that surgery is required to fix it."
Luca Caputi has been called up from WBS.
He's expected to play with either Crosby or Malkin tonight.
A bunch of people e-mailed this in:
As someone once said about a really bad album,
this song defies the law of physics by sucking and blowing at the same time.
At the 2:12 mark, we get the Penguin bashing. As someone brought up on Twitter this is how that part should go:
"...I eat Penguins for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
I blow big shots in seventh games because I ain't a winner."
At [Puck Daddy], where you get an automatic Q&A if you write a Caps song,
these two ass-clowns got some face time.
We mean that.
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That quote is from Malkin's post-game interview and it says it all. His life isn't over, ours isn't and neither should yours be. Have the past five games been tough? Sure they have. But we've been through worse. We know there's light at the end of the tunnel for this team. Last year we weren't so positive.
The Pens got 50 shots on Vokoun. The SHOOOOOOOOT guys don't even know what's happening right now. While they kiss Hines Ward's tears away, we'll keep going on. If the team can tighten up the defensive zone coverage and get the powerplay going, they'll steamroll the entire world. You think Evgeni Malkin is going to be quiet forever? If you do, you're probably also calling for Shero to get Kovalchuk for Martin Skoula and a bag of pucks.
Everyone's frustrated right now, no denying it. But this team is too talented and too well coached to not be able to play their way out of this. After their last losing streak, they won like 50 in a row. They'll be fine. If the ship starts to really sink and things have to be done, then in Shero we trust. But until then, stay the course.
At the end of the day, the Pens are still 26-16-1 and sit comfortably in 4th place. Step back, hit the hash pipe and bang your lady or dude.
The other game Pittsburgh is playing in Miami today.
The Panthers have given the Pens problems all season.
Tomas Vokoun will be in net for Florida.
He's been on fire in every game against the Pens.
In other news, Mike Yeo has been hospitalized.
We could say something about the Pens power play here but...
There's nothing worse on a lazy Saturday afternoon than the Pens going into Tampa Bay's Sam's Club Warehouse and laying a turd on the center-ice dot with pinpoint accuracy.
As far as Tampa's concerned, they've been under everyone's radar all season.
They have the horses. So did Eight Belles' jockey.
So, the Pens have now dropped 4 in a row and 5 of the last 6. But this shit happens. In the NFL, losing 4 games in a row means you start calling people homos on Twitter. In the NHL, it's 5% of the season. But, still, flip the calendar back one year, and things were much more depressing.
We refuse to try to chisel away at the Pens' issues, because they're hard to find. Sure, the Pens powerplay is anus, but it'll come around when it has to. We're looking at a hockey team that's been hanging around at the top of their conference all season, they're the defending world champs, they have 2 of the top 10 players in the world, and their GM already knows what you're having for lunch next week. They just haven't been winning recently. Going through these stretches helps everyone in the organization to find faults and to find what works and what doesn't. Have to do it.
And the Pens are taking this slump into the official dog days of winter; that slice of time from mid-January to about a week before the trade deadline where it's cold as balls 24/7 and you don't want to get out of bed in the morning. The most wonderful time of the year.
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St. Pete Times Forum
Check out the enemy:
We're officially into the second half of the season now.
It's also the Pens first game of 2010 and another wonderful 3pm start.
The Lightning are 11th in the Eastern Conference with 40 points.
They lost to Montreal in overtime on Wednesday.
Martin St. Louis leads the team in points with 44 and Steven Stamkos leads in goals with 21.
After losing three games in a row, and four of their last five, everyone's anxious to jump off of the Pens bandwagon.
After 41 games last year, the Pens were 20-17-4. They had 44 points, nine fewer than they have today at the same point in the season.