Saturday, January 14, 2006

Game #45 - at Nashville

Pittsburgh Penguins at Nashville Predators

Pittsburgh - 11-24-9 - 31 pts - Last in East
Nashville - 27-12-5 - 59 pts - 3rd in West

Nashville is winning with smoke and mirrors. They have to be. How else do you explain a team that has only scored 12 more goals than they've allowed to have won 27 games? They're also incredibily streaky, having win streaks of 8,6 and 4 to go with losing streaks of 5,4 and 3 (some of the losses were OTL). Right now, they've lost two straight in OT. With any luck, they'll be slumping and the Pens can take advantage.

The home attendence has been inconsistent for the Predators, to be nice. If I were being a little bit less considerate, I'd say it was weak. For a team that has produced all year long, they've had games in the not too distant past with only 11,000 people there.

Player-wise, the Preds are led by Paul Kariya. They also have Steve Sullivan and Yanic Perrault (wouldn't he have looked good in a Pens uniform this year? But no... we had to pay twice as much for Andre Roy...) Their main goalie is Tomas Vokoun - he's probably the main reason their record is as good as it is. His numbers are really pretty good.

For the Pens, it's time to buckle down and work hard again. Therrien was pleased with the effort in the first two periods in Chicago, but the Pens couldn't seem to get over the hump. I just saw Star Wars recently, so I'm getting my Kessel Run jokes ready for sure now. The shame of it is that if the Pens had stayed hot, come back to beat Atlanta and rode that to a winning streak over some dubious oppostition this week, they would have been right back into the playoff chase. Instead, they're just trying to score more than one goal in a game.

Maybe this is when they right the ship.

I'd be remiss if I didn't also mention that I hope the Steelers and Pitt Panthers win tomorrow. It'll be a busy day for the TV here.

Let's go Pens!

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