Saturday, December 05, 2009

Game #30 - vs Chicago Blackhawks

Game 29
Blackhawks (17-7-3, 37 pts) at Penguins (20-9-0, 40 pts)

Mellon Arena - Pittsburgh

The Blackhawks are excellent because they have depth and talent across their lines and on the blue line. Ladd and Seabrook are good examples of that.

Why does it matter?

Do you need anyone to tell you? The Hawks are one of the top teams in the West. They play an exciting style of hockey. They have young superstars. If the Pens played them more often, they'd be a huge rival.

What has been happening lately?
  • Pens - Eight wins in ten games have put the Pens back on track. Sid is on fire right now and Geno just had a three point night.
  • Blackhawks - The Blackhawks are slumping ever so slightly right now, having lost three out of four. That includes a home loss last night to Nashville.
Questions to be answered
  • Will we see Huet or Niemi? Niemi has better numbers, albeit on a smaller scale. Huet played last night, but he has played back-to-back this year.
  • Can the Pens use offensive zone possession to take advantage of tired legs? The Blackhawks were in Chicago last night.
  • I'm still looking for a shut out from a Pens goalie. Can they get one? (this question is staying here until they do)
Keys to the game
  • Execution on special teams - the Blackhawks don't draw many penalties and don't take many either. That magnifies the importance of the chance that present themselves.
  • Match ups - get the right players on the ice against Kane and Toews.
  • Hossa - you know, he made a choice and it went badly for him. Maybe it's time to ease off? Naaahhh! Boo him some more!

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