Howdy Pens Fans! It will be a big night for our men (and boys) in Black and Vegas Gold tonight, as the Islanders come to the Igloo looking to bounce back from a tough 3-2 loss to the Flyers on Monday night.
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Tonight marks the first game this season for highly touted defenseman Kris Letang, who was recalled from the baby penguins and he should see some considerable PP time and also regular ice time. It will be interesting to see how he reacts after having a tough start in WBS, but he has been coming on strong lately. Another interesting tid-bit for tonight is that MAF will be back in goal to face-off against DP, who always seems to play well against the Pens. MAF has had a considerable amount of time to work out the “kinks”, I just hope that he worked out the fact that he needs to stand up to make saves a little more, and not go down before the puck leaves the opponents stick. I think that all teams are on to the fact that they need to go “upstairs” to score on MAF. I, like the Pens front-office, believe in MAF and have no doubts that he will get back on track to improve on his 4-7 record and his .893 save percentage. I think that tonight will be the “new” season opener for the Pens and that MAF will be back tonight.
The Pens should come out flying tonight as they will be honoring HOF’er Paul Coffey, who will be inducted into the Pens HOF tonight in a pre-game ceremony. This will hopefully get the crowd into the game early and help motivate the Pens to not allow two goals (as has been the norm) before they start putting the puck in the net. Hopefully all the Pens have had time to gather their thoughts about their mediocre start, and get the team back on track before they fall further in the standings.
Strong defense will be a must for the Pens tonight to support MAF’s return and they also need to stay out of the penalty box. The Isles have a league best 33.3% PP on the road. If the Pens can get the first goal tonight that will hopefully help them to not take so many chances, and thus, take unnecessary penalties. I also hope to see the Pens use a different PP scheme tonight with Letang probably going with the First PP unit along with Gonchar or Whitney.
Like the weather is changing so quickly in Pittsburgh today, I also feel that a change is in the air for the Penguins. And that change will start with tonight’s game against the Isles!
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