Sunday, April 10, 2011

Penguins 5, Thrashers 2

So what happened?
Knowing that they had nothing to gain from a victory today other than pride and / or momentum, the Pens chose to rest Staal, Kunitz, Martin and Neal.

The team, to its credit, didn't miss a beat.

Yes, they were out shot badly (38-20), but most of that was after they had built a three goal lead heading into the third period. You'd like to see things be a bit more even in the third, but the truth is that this was much more similar to the playoffs - build a lead and then hang on for dear life.

Godard, Comrie, Conner and Tangradi were inserted into the lineup, and Niskanen and Engelland both played.

Who scored?
Kennedy (21), Dupuis (17), Rupp (9), Letestu (14), Comrie (1)

The Good?
  • Mike Comrie had a few good chances and managed an empty-netter to get his first goal of the season. He may be needed in the playoffs, so it was nice to see him involved.
  • Matt Niskanen was your ice time leader for the Pens. He played well, with two assists and a +1.
  • The power play managed a goal for the third straight game for just the second time since November. They're getting pucks on the net and setting good screens right now.
The Bad?
  • Getting out shot 16-3 in the third period is never a good thing.
The Ugly?
  • Three more minor penalties in the third period while protecting a lead. If they do this in the playoffs, they'll be bounced out of the first round.
Any Surprises?
  • Eric Godard had his second-highest ice time total of the season. Combine that with Niskanen being the leader in ice time and you have a big surprise.
What's their record now? Any important move in the standings?
The Pens finished the regular season with a record of 49-25-8, good for 106 points. It is the second-highest total in franchise history. They also tied the record for road wins with 24. This truly was a remarkable regular season by any standard you'd like to use.

Who's next?
The Bolts come to the Igloo later this week to open the playoffs. Beard-a-thon anyone?

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