Sunday, May 31, 2009

F && K Off Ded Things!

Hey Honey, I just got my pink slip from GM and it hurt my feelings!!! WAA!!

The Pens look frustrated, Osgood looks tough, Fleury looks very very ordinary...............all of those better change, or it will be time to focus on summer very soon! Lets go Pens! This series feels very similar to the Caps series in that the Pens probably deserved a better fate in at least one of these games............Pens need to take the next two games at home, and I still think they will. They do need to settle down a bit and take advantage of their chances, go back to working for dirty goals, and get a game out of Fleury with 0 goals gift wrapped for the Ded Things!


wonder what the hosers in blotown can whine about after the gift goal that started with Hosebag slashing Duper, then the puck going offisides before they scored......cannot wait to read that garbage! Lets go Pens!

I thought Motown was a tough town.......sounds like a Kotex shortage to me

letsgoredwings 5/31/20093:36 PM
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Cindy and the Penschwins (a bike with training wheels is their bad motor scooter) and the Red Wings in 90 minutes.Dats is out for game 2.

MotorCityRefugee 5/31/20093:36 PM
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When NBC reports on a "lucky bounce" goal they are talking about Detroit, when they speak about their #### penguins, they call it an amazingly skillful capitalizing on the situation! What a bunch of BS!Cindy will deserve to be called by his boy name when he stops the cheap spoiled brat stuff like the two-hander on Maltby's foot after the game... Helm makes Crosby look like cheap plastic to me, JABs will come into his own this year, and the Pen's will be Villie-fied too, after that the old timers will put in their two cents worth!We need to stop the turnovers, Cindy is a purse-snatcher and a cherry-picker so let's make him earn every goal. It is obvious that he has the chops, so no need to feed his already hyper-inflated ego. He could be great if he developed a depth character {no more faceoff #### grabbing when somebody does'nt leave him alone} and learns to work like Malkin I think Malkin will soon eclipse Cindy anyway

wiredwingsfan5/31/20092:49 PM
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Remember last year when the pens were whininig about Homer in the crease? The refs called penalties when he wasn't even close. Also disallowed a couple of goals. When do you think that will start again? Maybe after tonights win.GO WINGS
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CHodges,Yes I noticed a number of non-calls against the Pens, especially for interference. The non-calls for interference have been going on all through the platoffs. I noticed it in the Anaheim series as well.The non-call that almost changed the game was Malkin's trip of Kronwall at the Pittsburgh blue line which resulted in a clean breakawy for Malkin. If Ozzie doesn't make that save the non-call becomes the controversey of the game. There were two other plays when even the NBC crew couldn't figure out why there was no penalty called against the Pens.

CHodges5895/31/200912:41 PM
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sorry...that was non Calls

CHodges5895/31/200912:40 PM
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Did anyone besides me notice the non alls on the pens...its hard to beat a good team and the zebras too..but we did it anyway! Go Wings another sweet repeat for a city that DESPERATELY needs al the help it can get

Enjoy the Road the Finals!

Wings Coach MIke Grabcock

Hey Blotown, Cindy says take this!!

Detroit SUX

Alright Pens......time to give this team a little less respect. It is also time to shove a live grenade up the arses of their arrogant fan base. The talk after one game of a sweep, the incessant Cindy Crysby and Evelyn Malkin talk has a burr up my ass about Pavel Catpuke, or Dickless Kornhole, or Piss Osbad, well you get the point....time to play wac a mule with their beloved Johan Franzen........please split his friggin head open. Ok, now that is off my chest, Go my followers, all 4 of you.....I debated posting some very thoughtful analysis of last nights game, but went this route instead!

Good Stuff.....worth a look!

Come on need this one tonite!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Pens will be drinking brandy with Lord Stanley in 6 games

The Pittsburgh Penguins will drink from Lord Stanley's Cup on home ice Monday June 8th, 2009. It will be a moment to remember. The series will not be easy. There will be moments in every game where you think the Penguins will lose the game. There will be a few moments where you think they will lose the series. They will not. Do not get me wrong, the Red Wings are still a tremendous hockey team, but this years Penguins team will win the Cup. Why do I think this? Reason One-Despite the fact that the Wings beat the Hawks in 5 games, it took them 2 wins in overtime to beat a team that is very young and inexperienced, and who got poor goaltending for most of the series. The current Pens are FAR superior to that Hawks team in every way right now.

Reason Two-Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin are on FIRE!! Both players have already surpassed last years point totals and obliterated their goal scoring totals.

Both players have more points in three series than the playoff scoring leaders from last yar had after four series. Though this does not guarantee that both will stay hot in this next series, their determination and maturity leaves no reason to believe they will not sustain a high level of play. Malkin was nonexistent in last years finals until it was too late, that will not be the case this year. He and Sid are both playing the best hockey of their careers.

Reason Three-Datsyuk, Zetterberg and Hossa are not playing their best hockey of the year. Add to that the fact that Datsyuk and Lidstrom are nursing injuries, as is defenseman Ericcson. Add the fact that the Pens are very healthy right now, and the depth factor could come into play about halfway through the series.

Reason Four-The relatively quick turnaround favors the Pens who are younger, currently healthier, and playing with a day more rest. They still have to go steal home ice, but the set up is ripe for them to do that, and I think the later in the series it gets, the more the Pens will have an edge.........Stealing a game on the road to start the series seems very doable........playing the body from the start and viewing the series as a war of attrition will benefit the aggressive forecheck, turning the D of the Wings and finishing EVERY check will serve the Pens well in the long run. As they say in boxing, kill the body and the head will die.........

Reason Five-Scoring Depth-Although both teams have six players with ten or more points, the Pens top two have a total of 19 more than the top 2 for the Wings, while the next 4 are very similar. The Pens can now roll four quality lines, all of whom play with energy and desire. Guys like Guerin, Kunitz, Gonchar, Satan, Fedotenko, Talbot, Letang, and Eaton are putting the puck in the net and contributing offensively.

Reason Six-The Pens style is more conducive to winning this type of series.......have you noticed the fact that the Pens shoot the puck, sixty to seventy times per game, getting about forty on net during most games of these you notice the authority with which they crash they net? Most of their goals in these playoffs have come from right in front of the net, after paying the necessary price.

Reason 7-The Pens defense is playing great-The defense is getting offensive contributions not only from Gonchar, but Letang, Eaton and Boucher. Letang has been very impressive thus far, and is motivated to play for his friend Luc Bourdon who was killed in a motorcycle accident this year. Orpik, Scuderi, Gill and Eaton have played great shutdown defense.

Reason 8-Sid is ready to fulfill the prophecy-It is tough to say ANYTHING bad about a kid who broke into the league as a youngster, and in his first four seasons scored 397 points, despite missing a quarter of one of those seasons. That said, the Sidney Crosby we have watched for the last three months is the BEST Sidney Crosby we have ever seen. Sid is not only scoring at a blistering pace, he is scoring GOALS like a sniper, erasing the "sid is more of a playmaker" argument. Sid is also blocking shots, backchecking like a demon, crashing the net, and winning faceoffs. He put the Pens on his shoulders in the Caps series and TOOK that series from OVrrated and his friends. His leadership skills have begun to catch up with his on ice skills and having two quick wingers who can play physical and finish plays is not huring him either. I will never forget the look on Sids face as he watched the Wings carry the Cup around Mellon Arena last year. This year Sid has the look of a player who will not be denied, the talent to impact that, and a supporting cast that can help ensure that he is not. The Sid factor tilts the scales to the Pens in my opinion........................The Pens were not ready last year to take the torch from the most dominant franchise in hockey.........this year they are.....and they will.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009


Bend over Hosebag the two headed monster is coming for you! Oh yeah, probably not the first time, eh? It's on, let's see how that decision looks in a couple weeks!

Time to focus on the Wings

Could we be in for some classics like this one?

Watch this and remember that feeling........Not this year Ded Things

Can watch this all day long

Raleighs resident Ass Clown at Work

A picture is worth a thousand words.............If there was any doubt that Cowher is not only bad luck at home conference championship games, but an attention mongering whore, listen to Guy Junker. Apparently Big Bad Bill was not answering questions posed by the Pittsburgh media with regard to why he became a Canes fan, despite his Pittsburgh upbringing.........When given the chance to be on the broadcast with Vs he suddenly could give an answer. The pic says it all.......he is Fredo......the family member you never want to see again.

Bring on the Wings!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

More Cowher Disdain

watching this asshole do the hurricane siren made me want to put my fist through the back of his head.....did I just say that?? Sorry.

You can spit shine your shoes...........

Congratulations PENS NATION


Random thoughts until I can put something better together:

Cowher continues his Conference Championship history, thanks Bill, can you become the organ grinder or squid keeper for the Red Wings? DOOSH! Please do not show that ugly spit covered mug at any of the Finals games!!

Again, this team weathers the quick goal on the road, then steal the air from their opponent;

I like the fact that this year they skated with the trophy;

This team is more mature and even grittier than last year's team;

They beat you in so many the two headed monster was relatively quiet, so what happens? They get goals from Fedotenko, Talbot, Guerin, and Adams;

I have been a very strong OPPONENT of even having Satan on this team........he played a soft, lazy game in my opinion all year long........guess we know why they don't ask for my opinion.......I have a world of respect for the way he handled his demotion, his recall, and his play since being reinserted into the lineup has been excellent;

Petr Sykora has been amongst my favorite Pens since he came here two years ago, but I am not sure we will see him back in a Pens uniform again.....if not, Petr, best of luck and thanks for some great memories, especially the triple OT goal v the Wings;

Despite the success of the lineup with 7 defensemen and 11 forwards, I think we should add Dupuis to the lineup for the Wings series and go back to 3 defensive pairings, and 12 forwards.......keep double shifting Sid and Geno on the fourth line, but you can rotate the combo of Satan, Adams, and Duper on the wings!

Given the statistics on Stanley Cup finalists who do not win the Cup, the stats on teams who start the season early in Europe, and where the Pens were in mid February, this season has taken one of the most exciting turns I have ever seen;

Bylsma is 18-3-4 in the regular season since taking over, and 12-5 in the playoffs........Oh yeah, and FUCKING EASTERN CONFERENCE CHAMPS REDEUX

Great slideshow from Pensblog

He's Your Ass Clown Now

Spit covered attention whore!
Yo, jackass, your participation tonight means nothing, short of polluting the airways with that ugly mug of yours. The fans of Pittsburgh gave you as the hometown kid, wild support, at home AND on the road. Would have been a good t ime to be Switzerland with the Canes facing your hometown team with many people who gave you at times undeserved support pulling like mad for the Pens. Maybe you can give out free hugs and towels tonite!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Great shot

Pens are a TEAM

Penguins superstars Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby have been garnering a lot of attention these days, and deservedly so. Malkin leads the NHL in postseason points (28) and assist (16) – this after winning the Art Ross Trophy as the league’s regular-season scoring champion. Not to mention the fact that he has been absolutely unstoppable lately, recording six straight mulit-point games totaling 16 points on seven goals and nine assists, including his first career playoff hat trick. Meanwhile, Crosby has a playoff-best 14 goals and is second in the NHL with 26 points. He has goals in eight of his last 11 games (12 total), including his first career postseason hat trick. What’s more, Crosby has been a consistent threat in the playoffs, tallying a point in 14 of 16 games. But for all the remarkable feats of Crosby and Malkin – and there are many more not mentioned – the Penguins wouldn’t be one win away from a second consecutive Stanley Cup Final appearance without the other players on the roster. Pittsburgh is more than just two players, and their success has been fueled by contributions from throughout the lineup. Just consider a small glimpse of what the rest of the team has chipped in during the first three rounds: Bill Guerin – The veteran is third on the team with 13 points and has scored clutch goals in the postseason. Guerin buried two goals, including the game-winning overtime score, in Game 2 against Philadelphia in the opening round, and added the game-winner in Game 7 at Washington in the semifinals. Chris Kunitz – The gritty forward is quietly third on the Penguins with 11 assists. He scored a big goal in Game 2 against Carolina and has brought energy and passion to the ice, evidenced by his 43 hits. Ruslan Fedotenko – The Ukraine native is a clutch postseason goal scorer. He scored Pittsburgh’s first of five unanswered goals in Game 6 at Philadelphia to turn a 3-0 deficit into a 5-3 game and series victory. Every time Fedotenko has scored, it’s been during a big moment of the game. Maxime Talbot – Talbot has sparked the team’s second line since his elevation during the opening round. He buried a goal on a breakaway to tie Game 2 against Carolina at 3-3 - the Penguins would eventually win 7-4. Talbot’s defensive abilities have allowed Malkin and Fedotenko to assert themselves more offensively. Jordan Staal – The 6-foot-4, 220-pound shutdown center has been matched against the opposing team’s top players. He held Philadelphia’s Jeff Carter to one goals in six games (Carter had 46 in the regular season, second most in the league). Staal has quieted his brother Eric in the Conference finals. Eric had 13 points on nine goals and four assists entering the third round. In the first three games, Jordan has held his older brother to one lonely assist. Matt Cooke – Cooke has excelled in his defensive/agitator role during the playoffs. He’s gotten under the skin of his opponents and has been spectacular on the Penguins’ penalty killing unit. Cooke has also chipped offensively on occasion, such as his career-high three assists in Game 2 against Carolina. Tyler Kennedy – The speedy forward scorched Philadelphia in the opening round, netting the game-winning goals in Games 1 and 4. He’s been strong defensively and has been matched against the opponent’s top lines. Miroslav Satan – Satan has flourished since being reinserted into the lineup – the Penguins are 8-2 when he plays. Despite his limited ice time, Satan chipped in four assists in five games against Washington, and scored the opening goal of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals against Carolina on a nice breakaway move. Craig Adams – The Harvard graduate's has provided a spark during his limited ice time on the fourth line. Adams has been one of the Penguins’ top penalty killers and even chipped in two goals and four points offensively, including a critical tally in Game 7 at Washington. Sergei Gonchar – The team’s defensive leader has inspired his teammates by playing through the pain of an injury he suffered during a knee-on-knee collision with Washington’s Alex Ovechkin. Gonchar missed two games but fought through the injury to play in the critical Game 7 victory at Washington. He’s been a steadying figure on the Penguins’ blue line. Brooks Orpik – As usual, Orpik has been a force on the ice for the Penguins. He’s racked up 73 hits in the playoffs, second most in the NHL, and 30 blocked shots. He’s provided a physical presence on Pittsburgh’s back end. Rob Scuderi and Hal Gill – The Scuderi-Gill duo has been the team’s top defensive pairing during the playoffs – matching up against the opposing team’s top players and lines. The tandem made Carter invisible, handled Ovechkin well enough for the Penguins to defeat the Capitals and is smothering Eric Staal. Mark Eaton – Eaton may be the biggest surprise of the postseason. The stay-at-home defenseman has blown up the scoresheet with four goals and six points – he compiled four goals and nine points during 68 regular-season games. But he’s also been defensively responsible and his 35 blocked shots ranked second in the league. Kris Letang – The 22-year-old blueliner has provided some offensive punch for the Penguins from the backend. He’s also scored critical goals during Pittsburgh’s Cup quest. With the Penguins’ trailing 2-0 to Washington, Letang scored the Game 3 overtime-winning tally to keep Pittsburgh alive. He also scored a key goal in the Game 7 victory at Washington that chased goalie Simeon Varlamov. Philippe Boucher – The veteran defenseman has been a welcomed addition to the team’s seven-man defensive rotation. He’s provided leadership, a calming presence and scored the game-winning goal in Game 1 against Carolina. Boucher has had a huge impact despite his limited ice time. Marc-Andre Fleury – The Penguins certainly wouldn’t be where they are today without great goaltending from Fleury. The young netminder stole Games 2 and 4 versus Philadelphia with 38- and 45-save performances. He was tremendous in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals, stopping 23 shots to help the Penguins survive a late onslaught by Carolina. He is the silent difference maker for Pittsburgh. So while Crosby and Malkin get most of the recognition, those two can’t do everything alone. They need help from their teammates and they’ve gotten that assistance in this postseason. Even the best player in NHL history, Mario Lemiux, didn’t win a Stanley Cup until he had a talented group to skate with him. As for the team, they’ll allow Crosby and Malkin to handle the extra attention while they quietly go about their business of helping the team in its quest for the Stanley Cup. And they are one win shy of taking another big step.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Canes fans actually seem fine, but still........can't let them totally off the hook!

Where does one get this kind of haircut??
Though it is an outdated stereotype, you cannot resist commentary on a Carolina jersey with the name HICKS

Malkenstein Photos!

Geno dishing punishment of a different sort!
Oh Yeah!

The Beast is loose!

The Two Headed Pensmonster

Who is better? They are both great!

Pens win 6-2 and Malkin is dominant again

There are some things you never get tired of......the Penguins again show their mental toughness and offensive firepower as they weather a first period flurry to beat the Canes again. After falling behind 1-0 early on a goal by Cullen, the Pens score a power play goal by Malkin to tie the score. The Pens then end the period with the two headed monster striking with 42 seconds and 7 seconds left in the period. Crosby took a beautiful feed from Guerin, and as he has done all spring, went to the net and buried it! As the period ended, Dr. Malkenstein swooped and buried another goal, and just like that the Pens silenced the RBC crowd with a 3-1 lead. After a second period in which the Pens seemed to take their foot off the gas, neither team scored. The Canes struck quickly in the third scoring to make it 3-2 within the first two minutes, and it appeared as if a storm was brewing!! Again, Malkamania runs wild as Evgeni Malkin leads a rush up ice, and as the entire Canes defense collapsed to keep him in front of them, Malkin drops a pass to Ruslan Fedotenko, who took a laser of a wrist shot, and bingo, it is 4-2 Pens and you could feel the Hurricanes get downgraded to a tropical depression. Craig Adams sealed the deal with an empty netter right off the face off, and Billy Guerin rubbed some salt in the wound with a late backhander that beat Ward to make it 6-2. The Pens still have another game to win to clinch the Series, but only the 1942 Toronto Maple Leafs and the 1975 New York Islanders have erased 3-0 deficits in the Stanley Cup playoffs, so the Canes have their work cut out for them.

Evgeni Malkin is the NHL Playoff scoring leader with 28 points, and Sid is second with 26. Crosby is the playoffs goal scoring leader with 14, and Geno is second with 12........Truly amazing! Chris Kunitz followed up his great performance in Game 2 with two more assists, tremendous back checking, and his usual physical play............Bill Guerin's assist on Crosby's goal was a thing of beauty and he finished with a goal of his own. The top two lines were unreal tonite, and if Talbot had his A game tonite, Geno has two MORE assists, setting up Mad Max for a point blank chance with an open net, and setting him free for a breakaway with a beautiful 80 foot pass..............tonite, Max did not have his hands, and he missed both chances......or Geno would be sitting with 30 pts!!! I almost forgot to mention that Genos sixth straight multi point playoff game is the first time that has occured since Dale Hawerchuk did it in 1993, and is two shy of the NHL record set by Wayne Gretzky in that same year!

The series is never over until it is over, and the fourth win in a series is always the toughest one to get, but the Pens SEEM to be too much for the Canes. Without Cam Ward in the net, the Pens may have scored in double digits in each of the last two games. In addition, the interview with Joe Corvo, one of the Canes leaders between the second and third periods was the most dejected I have seen a player look while still in a game and series. The post game interviews with Eric Staal and Erik Cole had a similar feel. The three day separation in games is exactly what the Canes need right now, and I hate to see the Pens go idle while hitting on all cylinders, but this team is so focused, I am not expecting it to change their style. If the Pens finish off the Canes, they will be the first team since the '83-'84 Oilers to go the Stanley Cup Finals and lose in one year, then return the next. The Oilers won the Stanley Cup on their second try, ending the Islanders' dynasty and starting their own. The situation would be eerily similar to the potential changing of the guard this time too! Enjoy this while you can Pens fans, it is UNREAL!!

Saturday, May 23, 2009


This is an incredible atmosphere, and the crowds get larger as each game progresses........

Great Pens warm up songs

Great Pens warm up songs

You will recognize this from pregame skates.....great tune

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Pens Win 7-4

After posting a novel last night, the need to put you to sleep with a lengthy dissertation is not there tonight! So, random thoughts from the game tonite:

Anybody else notice how often Max Talbot delivers a timely goal, or other big time play just when the Pens seem to need it? His goal to tie it 3-3 tonite seemed to really start the motor for the Pens......They outscored the Canes 4-1 from that point.

How do you counter a two headed monster like Geno and Sid when they are both playing well? Malkin is now the playoff scoring leader with 25 points, with Sid second with 24. Malkins hat trick goal tonite was just plain SICK!!

Chris Kunitz really deserved that goal tonite......Despite the attention placed on the fact that he had not scored a playoff goal prior to tonite, he has been a big part of the Pens success.........he now has 10 points, with 9 you think that part of the reason Sid is on fire is the fact that Kunitz and Guerin are big time wingers who can help create plays with him? Do you think the Pens would be the same team without the simple, physical game that Kunitz brings? Look at the highligts and see how many nice set ups Kunitz has produced during the playoffs. The additions of Kunitz and Guerin to this team were HUGE! I love both of those guys.

Read last night's post and add the game tonite to the collection of memories the Pens are creating. This team just reponds when challenged, plain and simple. On that note, perhaps we thank Chad LaRose of the Canes to some extent. Geno dominated this game from the point in time he got into the scrum with LaRose.......when you play with fire Chad, you get burned my man.

If Jordan Staal ever learns how to FINISH, he will be the Messier type center everyone is projecting. He is clearly a great shut down center, and can play with a physical edge. He also gets great opportunities during a game to score, but just seems to miss the net, take an extra second to pull the trigger etc. He is a 20 plus goal scorer with that shortcoming. As he develops his touch, he could be a 30 plus goal scorer who can shut down the other teams top lines to boot. Not a bad package.

The atmosphere inside and outside of the arena is just plain awesome. As we left tonite I realized that the big screen out front now draws so many people they spill out into the steet......had to be more than 5,000 fans OUTSIDE the arena.

The Pens are up 2-0, but I still do not take this Canes team for granted. That said, the leadership of Crosby, the devestating explosiveness of Malkin, the depth of scoring from the supporting cast and the defense, plus the pure mental toughness of this team has that championship feel. Marc Andre Fleury needs to be better more consistently if they are to carry that trophy around.

Finally, if you are a newer fan to this sport, but enjoy other sports, how can you not fall in love with hockey? It requires you to win four best of seven series to be the Champs in a sport that is so fast, and physical. The winner will be tested relative to their talent, their depth, their guts, their mental toughness, their discipline and their will. They will play through broken bones, stitched up faces, teeth on the ice and will only win if their hearts are as strong as their talent and if they have every member of their team contribute and stand up for each other. Nothing else in sport compares.

Could it be...............SATAN?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

How Lucky Are We as Pens Fans?

I am sitting here watching the Memorial Cup playoffs from the QMJHL, Rimouski v Drummondville, a great game finally won by Drummondville in OT. Watching it, and impatiently biding my time until game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals, I began to think of all of the exciting moments we have had the pleasure of seeing in the past 12 months as Penguins fans.

Before we even talk at all about the specifics of the past two seasons full of excitement, lets talk generally about the Pens. We are privileged to watch two of the very best hockey players in the world on the Pens in Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, much like we were treated to watching Mario Lemieux and Jaromir Jagr drive the Pens to two Stanley Cups in the 90's. Like the 90's teams with supporting cast of stars such as Ron Francis, Rick Tocchet, Kevin Stevens and Larry Murphy, this Pens team has Sergei Gonchar, Jordan Staal, Marc Andre Fleury, and Bill Guerin.

Now more specifically, the past 13 months have brought Pens fans the following starting with the 07-08 playoff run:

That Pens team finished 2nd in the Eastern Conference during the regular season, winning the Atlantic Division. They also made the blockbuster deal of the year to bring in Marion Hossa, while trading lots of young talent to get him. As part of that regular season, we saw this team overcome the loss of Sidney Crosby for much of the second half of the season, leading many to predict the demise of the Pens! Instead, we saw the character of this team as it surged past everybody in the division to earn the second seed in the conference, and Evgeni Malkin put the team on his shoulders.....he finished second in the league in scoring.

In the playoffs, the Pens were magic. They swept the Senators in 4 games to avenge the playoff loss from the year before in stunning fashion, then eliminated a New York Rangers team that many predicted would go to the finals in 5 games. Two things stand out to me from this series.......First in Game one, the Rangers came out and took a very dominating 3-0 lead, and things looked GRIM for the Pens.....instead of quitting, the Pens roared back to win that game in regulation, and really never looked back in the series. The elimination game was another testatment to their character. The Pens blew a 2-0 lead in the third period as NYR scored two quick goals to tie it. The Pens did their thing in OT as Marion Hossa blew a puck past Henrik Lundqvist to put the Pens in the Conference Finals against bitter long time rivals, the Philadelphia Flyers. The Penguins barely missed a beat, and took out a very good Flyers team in 5 games, brutalizing them in game 5 by a score of 6-0 to make their first appearance in the Stanley Cup Finals in 16 years v the "unbeatable" Red Wings. In the first two games, it seemed as if the Pens youth and playoff inexperience caught up with them, as the Pens lost the first two games of the series in very convincing fashion. The Pens played the Wings dead even for the next four games, and made it a very competitive series before succumbing in six games........Who will ever forget the magic of Game 5, when the Detroit crowd was getting ready for the SC celebration on home ice, the cup was brought up in preparation for the celebration, and MAD MAX Talbot spoiled the party by tying the game with about half a minute left! Marc Andre Fleury then played an unreal sequence of nearly 3 OT periods of stoning the Wings before Petr Sykora did his Babe Ruth imitation and scored the game winner he called to extend the seriest to six games! That sixth game came within two inches of a second OT classic as the game tying goal slid in tantalizing fashion right past the goal line..........we had to endure the Wings celebrating their championship on home ice, but it left an indelible impression as to what may lie ahead for this team!

Summer 08-Many experts stated the Pens 08-09 season was set up for disaster due to the departure of Hossa, Roberts, Malone, Hall, Laraque, and Conklin. As if that were not enough there were all kinds of crazy stats on the failures of Stanley Cup runners up in the following season due to SC hangover and an extended prior season. After making the "experts" seem like geniuses by playing themselves into 10th place in the conference by mid February, this team fires a coach who had taken them to the Finals the year before, replace him with a coach who not only had never coached in the NHL, but only coached half a season in WBS the Pens AHL affiliate!! They were surely dead, right?? WRONG, this team made a couple of trades to bring in a rugged winger in Chris Kunitz, a proven veteran sniper in Bill Guerin, and took Craig Adams as a much needed faceoff man and penalty killer off WAIVERS from Chicago. The Pens then rattled off a 19-3-3 stretch run to take them from 10th to 4th in the conference and home ice advantage in Round One of the playoffs!!!!!!!! As part of that magical run, we got to watch Evgeni Malkin win the Art Ross trophy as the NHL scoring leader with 113 points and Sidney Crosby catch fire to finish third in the league in scoring with 103 points despite a somewhat slow start by his standards........ Now the 2009 playoffs and the memories already created:

In general, can the party atmosphere inside and outside the arena between the sold out crowds, AND the thousands watching on the big screen be beaten?

Round One, we draw the Flyers again, a very strong team, more healthy for this playoff series and primed to avenge the elimination they suffered at the hands of the Pens in the previous season..........Again, the Pens had too much for the cross state rivals, defeating them in six games, and again creating some classic Penguins playoff moments. After winning Game One in convincing fashion, the Pens were taken to OT in Game 2. A win here by the Flyers, and the series is tied and they steal home ice......instead an OT goal by Bill Guerin gave the Pens a strong lead in the series. After the Pens lost two of the next three games, the Flyers seemed to have momentum and threatened to steal the series. In game 6, the Pens fell behind 3-0 in the game and seemed destined to be forced into a 7th game with the Flyers......again, the character of this team showed. Mad Max Talbot decided to beat Daniel Carcillos fists with his face in an effort to turn the I watched the Flyers fans go nuts and the Wachovia Center come alive, I truly thought the plan had backfired........I still had to laugh as Max shooshed the Flyers crowd on his way to the penalty box. I would have NEVER imagined that the Pens were about to reel off 5 unanswered goals to again send the Flyers to the golf course in front of their frenzied fans! Given their treatment of Crosby, it was very sweet to watch them have to watch the handshake line in their building. The Pens reward for this win was to draw a red hot Caps team led by the player many experts believed to be the best in the NHL Alex Ovechkin. The Caps promptly won the first two games and the talking heads were already anointing the Caps as the Beast of the East and Ovechkin as the king of the NHL. Despite the two losses, the first games were gems, very tight, several lead changes and game two had hat tricks from both Ovechkin and Crosby.......something you almost NEVER see. Despite that, the Pens were dead right???? Wrong! The Pens won the next three games to take a 3-2 lead in the series! Two of those wins came in OT on goals by Letang in Game 3 and Malkin in Game 5! Every game was a one goal game, and Ovechkin and Crosby traded goals like two heavyweights trading punches..............The Caps returned the favor by beating the Pens in OT at Mellon Arena, to force a Game 7 back in DC. Three of the last four games in the series decided in OT, it does not get any better than that!! The experts again figured the momentum from Game 6 and home ice advantage for Game 7 made the Capitals the favorites to take this series and advance to the conference finals...........Wrong again, as the Pens stormed out to a 4-0 lead and ultimately won 6-2 in a game that was never competitive after Fleury stoned Ovechkin on an early breakaway! Even better, Sid had two goals, including a breakaway in front of the only crowd that is worse with him than the Philly crowd.....they sat in stunned silence as the Pens reeled off the first four goals, and the Pens advanced to the Conference Finals for the second straight year! During this series we saw four OT games, three won by the 'guins, and we saw a series in which the top 3 playoff scorers, (1) Sid, (2)OC, (3)Geno lit the lamp in stunning fashion. To put Sid and Genos scoring pace in perspective consider this; Crosby and Pavel Datsyuk tied for the NHL playoff scoring race last year with 26 points each after 4 full playoff series. At the end of two series this year Crosby and Malkin had 21 and 19 points respectively. At that pace, they would shatter last years playoff leading numbers with 42 points for Sid and 38 for Geno! We also saw the look of a gun fighter in Sids eyes, as he asserted himself as the best player in the NHL in front of the hockey world! His performance in the second round was stunning in every way. He would not let this team fail, as he matched Ovechkin point for point AND goal for goal, while outplaying him defensively and cashing in directly on a few of Ovechkins turnovers! Most of the "experts" have the Pens and Wings on a collision course for a championship rematch in June, but that is premature. Those same experts will give the Pens little chance of defeating the Wings. Regardless the Pens still have no small matter in dealing with the Carolina Hurricanes ahead of them. The Canes are quite capable of spoiling the party, so we need to take care of that business before we think of the Wings. I will say this.......the chance to potentially beat the Wings and Marion Hossa who left the Pens to go to the team "with the best chance to win the Cup," is about as tantalizing to me as a sporting situaion could be. That said, this team has given us all more thrills and memorable moments over the past year than any reasonable fan could ever ask for....(throw in the Steelers win in Super Bowl 43 and it is pretty good to be a PGH fan right now).......think about just the moments listed above, I am sure I missed some, and savor this team! They are a unique, tough, wildly skilled, gritty team that will be a tough out for anybody. Maybe, just maybe, this season of "unfinished business" will end as the season with the "mission accomplished".... but for now focus on the next step by taking care of the Canes......either way, this team is truly special, and we are privileged to be a part of this!