Thursday, November 20, 2008

Game #19 - at Atlanta Thrashers

Pittsburgh Penguins (11-4-3, 25 pts) at Atlanta Thrashers (7-8-2, 16 pts)

At first glance, it would seem this one heavily favors the Pens. The Thrashers suck this year, right? As Lee Corso would say, "Not so fast, my friend." These teams are more similar (lately) than they would appear.
  • Both had extended winning streaks snapped in their most recent game.
  • Both managed to fill the net pretty well during their winning streak.
  • Both average about the same number of shots and goals.
Here's where the differences come into play:
  • Atlanta is much worse defensively. They don't allow many more shots than the Pens, but they sure do allow more goals (3.59 average vs 2.67 average).
  • The Pens power play is horrendous on the road, clicking at just 9.4% - that has to change.
  • The Thrashers have a doofus for a superstar in Ilya Kovalchuk. Said doofus is having a sub par season so far, with just 6 goals in 17 games.
It's a match up of the backups in net, with the Moose for Atlanta and Sabu for the Pens. That a big advantage for the Pens, because Hedberg hasn't been playing well this year.

Game time is 7:00.

Let's Go Pens!

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