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Thread: A Few Not-So-Positive Thoughts After The Pens And Panthers Game

      
  1. #1
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    Default A Few Not-So-Positive Thoughts After The Pens And Panthers Game

    I had to watch the re-air of the game at 11:30ish, last night so it gave me a lot of time to really dissect a few things and reflect. On top of that I was sober, which was probably not the best way to watch that game, but I'm a trooper!

    • Tomas Vokoun was bad. This was pretty obvious. The one goal he was interfered with I can understand but the others he just looked to be losing his composure and patience... Things we usually see from Fleury. He was moving left and right all night, which the Defense wasn't helping and has been a successful Offensive game pan against the Pittsburgh Penguins Defense and goalies in the past. Kevin Dineen adjusted well for this game in that aspect. Vokoun played nervous. Whether it was his family being there or what not. This isn't a real good sign that he's struggled 2 games in a row. This is when Dan Bylsma goes and overworks Fleury for 10-12 games straight...

      Now, this is where I rant. I have heard a few times excuses about Marc-Andre Fleury being overworked last season and we needed a goaltender to spell him.

      Bull****.

      Marc-Andre Fleury has averaged between 62-67 games per season since 2006-07 when he's not been injured. the Pens won a Stanley Cup on the back of Marc-Andre Fleury playing 62 games. He played 67 games last season. Those extra 5 games aren't breaking him. Besides, he's make Franchise Goalie money, he should be expected to play. Martin Brodeur from 1997-1998 through 2009-2010 started in 70 games per season every single season except one in which he was injured.

      Going a step further, Fleury notched the 8th most games played in 2011-12. Jonathan Quick was on the winning side of hoisting the Stanley Cup playing in 2 more games than Fleury posting incredible statistics. It's time for fans and the media to stop pampering Fleury. He should be starting 62-70 games per season and regardless of how the backup goalie is playing, Dan Bylsma needs to play Tomas Vokoun, especially down the stretch as Fleury gets a tad bit of rest to prepare and Vokoun gets more playing time to prepare as well.


    • Tanner Glass has 0 points as a Pens player Errey and Steigy mentioned this last night. I thought they were wrong and looked it up and facepalmed. At this point it is really safe to say that Tanner Glass is no offensive upgrade from Mike Rupp and Arron Asham. He's not even on an equal level as those guys. He's also a -5 which is about where Asham and Vitale were last season and Glass and Vitale are this year.

      Glass kills penalties but I don't know if anyone else has noticed but the Pittsburgh Penguins have a #21 ranked PK clicking at a 78.8% Rate. They haven't been this bad since the crappy 2005-2006 season. That's right, even the ****ty 2005-06 Pittsburgh Penguins managed to kill penalties at a 78.8% Rate. That is where this Pittsburgh Penguins team is at - the same level as the 2005-06 team killing penalties. I would say the loss of jordan Staal hurts except that the Pittsburgh Penguins Penalty Kill when Jordan Staal has been injured over the years maintained the same rate or killed at a better rate. On top of that, Brandon Sutter is winning more than 50% of his Faceoffs on the Penalty Kill, where Jordan Staal in 2011-12 for instance won just 44.9% of his Faceoffs.

      Mark me down as cautiously skeptical in the early parts of the season and know that I understand that Tanner Glass is adjusting to the Pittsburgh Penguins. However, right now, I don't think Tanner Glass has done the things Ray Shero had expectations of. Below mediocre Offense and mediocre Penalty Killing can't be the expectation.


    • Why is Beau Bennett playing Left Wing? He's a natural Right Winger. He's played most of his career as a Right Winger. Making him into a Left Wing reduces his skill and production. Beyond that, he's being played at Right Wing so that Pascal Dupuis can play Right Wing. Dupuis can play either Wing. Sure, he's better as a Right Wing, but whose production do you want to maximize? Beau Bennett's or Pascal Dupuis?

      When Evgeni Malkin comes back from his Concussion injury, the Lines should get mixed a little bit..

      Dupuis - Crosby - Bennett
      Kunitz - Malkin - Neal

      or

      Kunitz - Crosby - Bennett
      Dupuis - Malkin - Neal

      Get the kid in his natural position and put players in their best "position" to succeed at the NHL level.


    • Why are the Pens sitting Simon Despres? however "bad" someone might think he's playing, he's still a +6 on the season. he's on the ice when more goals go in. Why healthy scratches for that? I've seen a little bit of anger for Deryk Engelland playing out on the social networks, but besides the fact he's the only guy that fights the Heavy Weights on the team, he can do so while being productive, unlike a Steve MacIntyre or a Colton Orr. Engelland is a +9. He's not hurting the team. People need get off his back.

      Ironically the only blue liner that isn't in the Plus category is Matt Niskanen at -4 and we all sing Matt Niskanen's praises.

      Before anyone says anything, I understand the limitations of the +/- stat. I'm using it for it's sole purpose however, to show that guys like Simon Despres have no business being on the bench when they are hurting the team and how irrational and reactionary some of the comments I've seen about Deryk Engelland are .


    • I'm not that impressed by the Chicago Blackhawks start, just like I'm not at all worried about where the Pittsburgh Penguins are. We've seen teams like the Chicago Blackhawks choke hard in the Playoffs. Anyone that remembers the 1992-1993 Pittsburgh Penguins remember. We've also seen a team at around this time in the season back in 2009 being on the edge of not being in the Playoffs, battle to make it and win the Stanley Cup. The Regular Season doesn't define teams, what they do in the Playoffs defines them. Anything outside of making the Playoffs in the Regular Season are "banner raising" accolades that teams like the Washington Capitals covet.
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: A Few Not-So-Positive Thoughts After The Pens And Panthers Game

    Quote Originally Posted by Kipper View Post
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    I had to watch the re-air of the game at 11:30ish, last night so it gave me a lot of time to really dissect a few things and reflect. On top of that I was sober, which was probably not the best way to watch that game, but I'm a trooper!

    • Tomas Vokoun was bad. This was pretty obvious. The one goal he was interfered with I can understand but the others he just looked to be losing his composure and patience... Things we usually see from Fleury. He was moving left and right all night, which the Defense wasn't helping and has been a successful Offensive game pan against the Pittsburgh Penguins Defense and goalies in the past. Kevin Dineen adjusted well for this game in that aspect. Vokoun played nervous. Whether it was his family being there or what not. This isn't a real good sign that he's struggled 2 games in a row. This is when Dan Bylsma goes and overworks Fleury for 10-12 games straight...

      Now, this is where I rant. I have heard a few times excuses about Marc-Andre Fleury being overworked last season and we needed a goaltender to spell him.

      Bull****.

      Marc-Andre Fleury has averaged between 62-67 games per season since 2006-07 when he's not been injured. the Pens won a Stanley Cup on the back of Marc-Andre Fleury playing 62 games. He played 67 games last season. Those extra 5 games aren't breaking him. Besides, he's make Franchise Goalie money, he should be expected to play. Martin Brodeur from 1997-1998 through 2009-2010 started in 70 games per season every single season except one in which he was injured.

      Going a step further, Fleury notched the 8th most games played in 2011-12. Jonathan Quick was on the winning side of hoisting the Stanley Cup playing in 2 more games than Fleury posting incredible statistics. It's time for fans and the media to stop pampering Fleury. He should be starting 62-70 games per season and regardless of how the backup goalie is playing, Dan Bylsma needs to play Tomas Vokoun, especially down the stretch as Fleury gets a tad bit of rest to prepare and Vokoun gets more playing time to prepare as well.


    • Tanner Glass has 0 points as a Pens player Errey and Steigy mentioned this last night. I thought they were wrong and looked it up and facepalmed. At this point it is really safe to say that Tanner Glass is no offensive upgrade from Mike Rupp and Arron Asham. He's not even on an equal level as those guys. He's also a -5 which is about where Asham and Vitale were last season and Glass and Vitale are this year.

      Glass kills penalties but I don't know if anyone else has noticed but the Pittsburgh Penguins have a #21 ranked PK clicking at a 78.8% Rate. They haven't been this bad since the crappy 2005-2006 season. That's right, even the ****ty 2005-06 Pittsburgh Penguins managed to kill penalties at a 78.8% Rate. That is where this Pittsburgh Penguins team is at - the same level as the 2005-06 team killing penalties. I would say the loss of jordan Staal hurts except that the Pittsburgh Penguins Penalty Kill when Jordan Staal has been injured over the years maintained the same rate or killed at a better rate. On top of that, Brandon Sutter is winning more than 50% of his Faceoffs on the Penalty Kill, where Jordan Staal in 2011-12 for instance won just 44.9% of his Faceoffs.

      Mark me down as cautiously skeptical in the early parts of the season and know that I understand that Tanner Glass is adjusting to the Pittsburgh Penguins. However, right now, I don't think Tanner Glass has done the things Ray Shero had expectations of. Below mediocre Offense and mediocre Penalty Killing can't be the expectation.


    • Why is Beau Bennett playing Left Wing? He's a natural Right Winger. He's played most of his career as a Right Winger. Making him into a Left Wing reduces his skill and production. Beyond that, he's being played at Right Wing so that Pascal Dupuis can play Right Wing. Dupuis can play either Wing. Sure, he's better as a Right Wing, but whose production do you want to maximize? Beau Bennett's or Pascal Dupuis?

      When Evgeni Malkin comes back from his Concussion injury, the Lines should get mixed a little bit..

      Dupuis - Crosby - Bennett
      Kunitz - Malkin - Neal

      or

      Kunitz - Crosby - Bennett
      Dupuis - Malkin - Neal

      Get the kid in his natural position and put players in their best "position" to succeed at the NHL level.


    • Why are the Pens sitting Simon Despres? however "bad" someone might think he's playing, he's still a +6 on the season. he's on the ice when more goals go in. Why healthy scratches for that? I've seen a little bit of anger for Deryk Engelland playing out on the social networks, but besides the fact he's the only guy that fights the Heavy Weights on the team, he can do so while being productive, unlike a Steve MacIntyre or a Colton Orr. Engelland is a +9. He's not hurting the team. People need get off his back.

      Ironically the only blue liner that isn't in the Plus category is Matt Niskanen at -4 and we all sing Matt Niskanen's praises.

      Before anyone says anything, I understand the limitations of the +/- stat. I'm using it for it's sole purpose however, to show that guys like Simon Despres have no business being on the bench when they are hurting the team and how irrational and reactionary some of the comments I've seen about Deryk Engelland are .


    • I'm not that impressed by the Chicago Blackhawks start, just like I'm not at all worried about where the Pittsburgh Penguins are. We've seen teams like the Chicago Blackhawks choke hard in the Playoffs. Anyone that remembers the 1992-1993 Pittsburgh Penguins remember. We've also seen a team at around this time in the season back in 2009 being on the edge of not being in the Playoffs, battle to make it and win the Stanley Cup. The Regular Season doesn't define teams, what they do in the Playoffs defines them. Anything outside of making the Playoffs in the Regular Season are "banner raising" accolades that teams like the Washington Capitals covet.
    The PK was 3/7 last night. That's horrible and brings back visions of the playoffs against the Criers last year. They have to fix that or another early exit looms ahead.

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    Default Re: A Few Not-So-Positive Thoughts After The Pens And Panthers Game

    Quote Originally Posted by exNCite View Post
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    The PK was 3/7 last night. That's horrible and brings back visions of the playoffs against the Criers last year. They have to fix that or another early exit looms ahead.
    It's strange...

    The Pens the past few Regular Seasons have had one of the Top PK's in the NHL and then they go into the Playoffs and the PK completely ****s the bed but they rebound for the Regular Season.

    So... perhaps the silver lining is perhaps we have an ugly PK heading into the Playoffs this year and they play lights out when it matters most! when we won the Stanley Cup, that seaosn we killed Penalties at an 82.6% Clip. It's not great. We killed penalties at 83.3% in the Playoffs. Again, ity's not great, but not bad. Compared to what we've done the past 3 years, I'd take that

    Here's the pessimistic side...

    Zbynek Michalek was a lot of things for the Pens that didn't fit or work, but killing penalties wasn't one of them. Guy was an excellent PK'er and his time is being replaced by giving some others more minutes but then adding in Tanner Glass. Michalek lead the team in short handed TOI last year. Besides Sutter taking over the role of Staal which could have a small affect, although there's the positive affect of him winning more Faceoffs, Tanner Glass is the new addition that IMO isn't failing to make the needed impact on the PK
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: A Few Not-So-Positive Thoughts After The Pens And Panthers Game

    I agree 100% with your analysis of Marc-Andre Fleury. The "over-playing" of a goalie is about as useful of a stat as the 100-105 pitch count in baseball. Shutting down Strausberg really got the Nationals that world series, right!? I think resting Fleury too much actually has more of a detrimental affect on the team and his performance than it does any bit positive affect. Being a stickler for continuity, I would much rather see Fleury play "too much" than not enough, especially with the lack of consistency Vokun is providing the Pens. Speaking of Vokun...

    I made the comment during and after the Philadelphia 6-5 loss that Vokun seemed extremely unfocused and ill-composed. He was extremely soft and his angles and crease presence were horrid. He literally looked disengaged from the game, which to me tells me that he is just as disengaged off the ice as he is on the ice, and that to me is a very bad sense. I too, missed the live broadcast of the game and had to watch when I came home from work today and Vokun seemed to have learned nothing from the Philadelphia loss. Granted all 4 goals against were on the PK (2 of which were 5 on 3 goals) but his movements were sluggish and again his angles weren't that good. His focus his a huge red flag for me and does not give me the confidence this guy could take us deep into the playoffs if the Pens needed him too. I harkenback to the days of Frank Peterangelo being a solid and reliable backup for the Pens, especially in the playoffs (ala "The Save"). To not have confidence in your backup is to me, is a huge concern for the Pens.

    I too also agree with your concern for why Simon Despres is not getting the minutes and games he deserves. I have been vocal with my dad that the Pens need to give this guy more playing time rather than consistently being a healthy scratch.

    On a more positive note, I am happy that Paul Martin is starting to find his groove and his role with the Pens. His new-found confidence to shoot the puck and play the style of hockey Bylsma wants him to play is definitely a positive move going forward. I am also pleased that the Pens are finding their consistency on the PP. They have had at least 1 PP goal for the past 6 or 7 games, which is something I think is important moving forward, especially with their inconsistency on the PK.

    Those are just some of my thoughts, comments and rebuttals must appreciated. Bull**** flags are also welcome!

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    Default Re: A Few Not-So-Positive Thoughts After The Pens And Panthers Game

    I agree with everything you say Kipper. I like your second set of lines better than the first:
    Kunitz - Crosby - Bennett
    Dupuis - Malkin - Neal
    The more I see Bennett play, the more I wonder why he was sent down over Tangredi in the first place.
    Even if Despres wasn't a +6, he needs to be playing. He's young, let him get the experience he needs.
    Engelland has been doing a fine job.
    I'll admit to being surprised by Nisky's -4.

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    Default Re: A Few Not-So-Positive Thoughts After The Pens And Panthers Game

    Quote Originally Posted by El Sid View Post
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    I agree with everything you say Kipper. I like your second set of lines better than the first:
    Kunitz - Crosby - Bennett
    Dupuis - Malkin - Neal
    The more I see Bennett play, the more I wonder why he was sent down over Tangredi in the first place.
    Even if Despres wasn't a +6, he needs to be playing. He's young, let him get the experience he needs.
    Engelland has been doing a fine job.
    I'll admit to being surprised by Nisky's -4.
    another thing I saw the other day was, the Pens benched Despres (for no good reason), we lose a couple in a row. He comes back into the lineup and we start winning. You know that I'm all about superstition

    Yeah nisky being on the wrong side of the +/- isn't really helping back up my claims of him being the type of Defensemen I like to see us going after but on the flip side he's been playing a lot with Orpik and Orpik has been to be nice - really bad this year. Jess Marshall over at faceoff Factor has a really good Post on a goal the other night and outlined how it was Orpik's fault --> http://www.faceoff-factor.com/1pitts...3-vs-lightning his positioning has been poor and so have his decision making and lack of emphasis clearing bodies from the crease. I wonder if his play has been hurting Niskanen's +/- numbers?

    Now since I posted this, Niskanen has climbed up to being a -1, but the Pairings have been all jacked up with Martin out, so I wonder..

    I know that we have a month before the Trade Deadline, but Ray needs to do something about that 4th Line. It sucks. Tanner glASS has been brutal and Joe Vitale has been just as bad. Both are -8 and have a combined 2 points.
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