Monday, April 28, 2014

Podcast: Pens close out Blue Jackets in Game 6, 4-3

It got a little too close for comfort at the end, but the Pens held on.  We look back on the CBJ series and look ahead to the Flyers or Rangers.

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  1. I think apologies are in order for your relentless sutter bashing this year.

  2. My thoughts (besides crossing my fingers that Sutter is okay): the media and the fanbase (not directed at the two of you) has created this narrative about the Pens horrible defensive play and Fleury's inconsistency that has been insurmountable. And I'm not suggesting that they haven't earned it honestly.

    BUT - it isn't the narrative of this series. The real narrative of this series ought to be the Pens terrible special teams play. Like truly awful special teams play. The BJ's scored more than half of their goals on special teams: 8 EV; 7 PP; 3 SH. Consider tonight - everyone is all up in arms about another blown lead, which is fair enough. But one of those goals was short-handed and another was on the PP. The PK is now at a rousing 74%.

    The Pens play poorly with big leads and tend to play down to their competition. We know this. They won't underestimate the NYR or Philly. And it is less likely they'll end up with big leads. Their ability to compete in the next round is going to hinge on 1) a PK that doesn't give the net freely to an opposition player (seriously - they completely cede the net on the PK. WTF.) and 2) a PP that actually attempts to put pressure on the other team when they have a lead (the d*cking around with the puck at times is just nuts, and the bigger the lead the worse it is).

    The wild lead changes in this series has masked what should be the major concern moving forward. The Pens are 5th in the playoffs in 5-5 F/A. They may not be a defensive juggernaut, but this series does not suit this narrative of "poor defensive play," etc, however invested the Yinzer contingent is in it.