Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Game #5 - vs New Jersey Devils

New Jersey Devils (3-2-0) at Pittsburgh Penguins (2-2-0)

I'll be live-blogging the game tonight, just to try something different. Come and join in on the fun! The comments thread will be wide open.

The Devils are coming off of a loss on the road to the Rangers. The amazing thing is that in two of their last three games, they've only been on the penalty kill ONCE. Either this is the cleanest team in hockey, or the refs were letting things go a little bit.

The Devils are led by Martin Brodeur who, aside from one 7-6 win earlier this season, is in good form. Offensively, they're led by Brian Gionta (Mighty Mouse), Scotty Gomez, Patrick Elias, Brian Rafalski, et al. The real Penguin killer, though, is John Madden. Keep an eye on him, especially on the penalty kill (assuming the Devils actually take a penalty tonight).

For the Pens, the game plan should be quite simple - out work the Devils and get the puck to the net. Start out early with some grit and determination and establish the tempo. Don't let the Devils get a two or three goal lead, because they'll fall back into that defensive system and suffocate you.

We'll see Malkin skate tonight between Recchi and Malone, and more interestingly, on the power play with Crosby and Armstrong. Having Sid and Evgeni on the same PP unit should be great to watch. The other lineup changes are that Eckman goes back to the first line, and Leclair is working with Staal and whoever isn't scratched (between Stewart, Thorburn and Roy) on the fourth line.

Marc-Andre Fleury is the starter in goal for the Pens.

Let's Go Pens!

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