Found April 29, 2013 on
Steel City Sports Report:
New York Islanders
New York Rangers
In Game 3 of last year's horrific quarterfinal matchup against the Philadelphia Flyers, Kris Letang had the most undisciplined game of his NHL career, and arguably his worst.The defenseman took a cross-checking penalty that led to a Flyers goal. Shortly thereafter, he got in a fight with Kimmo Timonen, then was ejected from the game. To make matters worse, he attempted to shush the Philadelphia crowd like Max Talbot did in 2009. Like the Penguins, he was unsuccessful.This all came after the Penguins, Letang in particular, preached being more disciplined and defensively responsible after the debacle in Game 2 where they surrendered eight goals. The response was another eight goals allowed and 89 penalty minutes including 17 minutes from Letang.After Game 3, I wrote about how Letang's lack of discipline covered up his reputation as one of the most talented players in the league.This year has been different for the French-Canadian defenseman. Letang finished with eight penalty minutes in 35 games, second only to Brandon Sutter (4) for a Penguins player participating in more than half the regular season games. His 38 points ties him with PK Subban among all defensemen which is why his discipline has been an overlooked luxury. But the playoffs are a different animal. In previous seasons it has become pretty apparent that Letang's temper heats up with the outside temperature. In 385 career regular season games Letang has 245 penalty minutes. In 65 career playoff games, he has 75 penalty minutes. His most disciplined playoff season was in 2010 when he registered only six penalty minutes; however, he also had a minus five rating.Now is the time for Letang to put it all together. He's going into a contract year and the prime of his career. He will be a Norris Trophy finalists and would have been a clear-cut winner had it not been for missing 13 games with a lower body injury. He seemed to harness his aggressiveness when attacking the puck and the opposing team and it will be this kind of reliability needed to win a second Stanley Cup and earn a big contract.Luckily, the Penguins' first round opponent isn't the type of team to tug on emotional strings. The New York Islanders are very inexperienced and they rarely play with an edge. Matt Carkner is a defenseman with a reputation of nasty hits but that's about it. The Islanders had the 8th fewest major penalties and the second fewest penalty minutes in the league. On top of that, the Penguins hold the power play advantage, statistically. So the Islanders will look to avoid getting into a shoving match.That doesn't mean opportunities wont arise for other teams to try and take advantage of Letang's short temper. The Ottawa Senators certainly wont have any issues going after the Penguins' stars considering they're still sour about the Matt Cooke-Erik Karlsson situation. The New York Rangers are a physical defensive team, as are the Boston Bruins; both delivering punishing hits and an elbow every now and then. If Letang takes the bait, he'll be incapacitated for the rest of the series and the Penguins will struggle to survive. When people speak of the talent in Pittsburgh, Kris Letang's name is certainly one of the top 5 names mentioned. He is the cornerstone of the defense and a necessity for the Penguins' success in the postseason. The Penguins talked about being a better team in their own end by being more disciplined. That means taking fewer penalties AND managing emotions from taking players out of position, whether it means trying to force a big play or hitting a player out of frustration. Letang has done an excellent job of containing his emotions this season, and he'll need to do it during the playoffs.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
It’s hard to believe that the Pittsburgh Penguins have been experiencing injury troubles throughout this shortened season. Think about it: Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Kris Letang, Paul Martin, and Brooks Orpik have all missed games for the Penguins this year due to some form of injury. Look at their regular season record: 36-12-0. The Penguins [...]
NHL.com The National Hockey League announced the dates, times and national broadcast information on Sunday for the 2013 Stanley Cup Conference Quarterfinal round, which begins Tuesday, April 30th.
Sidney Crosby will visit a doctor on Tuesday to confirm whether or not he his clear to play in Game 1 of the Pittsburgh Penguins’ Eastern COnference Quarterfinal series against the New York Islanders.
Crosby told Josh Yohe of McKeesport Daily
Pittsburgh Penguins coach Dan Bylsma insists he still believes in Marc-Andre Fleury, that the issues for the reeling Penguins go far beyond the struggles of their Stanley Cup-winning goaltender.
Still, that didn't stop Bylsma from making a switch he hopes will shift momentum in Pittsburgh's highly entertaining but slightly bewildering first-round playoff series with the...
And so it starts.
As we near the beginning of another year of NHL Playoffs with the Penguins facing the Islanders, many of the prognosticators list the Penguins as a strong contender, if not favorite, to win the Stanley Cup.
It's certainly not an outlandish prediction: The Pens went 36-12 in this shortened regular season, not to mention GM Ray Shero bolstering an already...
Your complete guide to the Pittsburgh Penguins vs. New York Islanders 2013 First Round Playoff series. New York Islanders 2013 Regular Season Stats # POS PLAYER GP G A P +/- PIM PP SH GW 91 C JOHN TAVARES 48 28 19 47 -2 18 9 0 5 26 L MATT MOULSON 47 15 [...]
Wednesday night the top seed in the east, the Pittsburgh Penguins face off in their opening round series against the #8 seed New York Islanders. There is a bit of history between these two teams. The fearless leader of Pensburgh.com “Hooks Orpik” (one of the best handles in all of the hockey blogging universe) spends 5 minutes in the box with us discussing the series from...
Sidney Crosby is still waiting for doctors to tell him his broken jaw has healed enough to allow him to play.
With or without their dynamic captain, the Pittsburgh Penguins are under pressure heading into the opening round of the NHL playoffs. Pittsburgh is the top team in the Eastern Conference and on Wednesday faces the surging New York Islanders.
Crosby broke his jaw a month...
When the puck drops Wednesday night in downtown Pittsburgh you can throw the 15 game win streak, the finishing first in the Eastern Conference and the Penguins beating the Islanders four out of the 5 games played this season out the window. Get rid of the pre-conceived notion that the New York Islanders are just going to roll over and hand the Pittsburgh Penguins the series. This...
The Pittsburgh Penguins are one of the most-watched teams in America. While the previous sentence might sound like some form of nonsensical gloating you might hear from a sports fan, it's actually pretty accurate according to a recent article from Sports Business Daily.
The report states that prior to their final few games of 2013 the Penguins were on pace to post the highest...
The last time the Pittsburgh Penguins hosted a playoff game, they won in thrilling fashion, defeating the Flyers 2-1 to stay alive for one more game. Most notably, the electricity in the Consol Energy Center. No doubt, the crowd at Consol was the loudest in it's short history and the fans were engaged on every shift. The camera shook because of the crowd and the transformation...
(1) Pittsburgh Penguins vs. (8) New York Islanders
For the Penguins to Win: Simply put, utilize their high-octane offense. Even without Sidney Crosby, this Penguins’ hockey club can put the puck in the net with guys like Chris Kunitz, Evgeni Malkin, James Neal, Pascal Dupuis, and Kris Letang. The team’s offense is absolutely lethal and if used the right...
Things are about to get really, really busy on the sets of TSN, but that didn’t stop the Canadian sports network from having a little fun lately.
TSN is about to kick up its already stellar NHL coverage in a big, big way with the Stanley Cup playoffs set to begin Tuesday night, and to celebrate, the boys on the TSN panel showed off their acting game.
In advance of the playoffs...
The shortened NHL season led to blockbuster local ratings for several teams. The Pittsburgh Penguins not only led the NHL in local television ratings during the 2012-13 season, but also outdrew every team in the [...]
Obviously this isn't the complete history of the two teams playing against one another, but here are some key moments in Penguins/Islanders history.
That video pretty much explains the situation. The Islanders came back from a 0-3 hole to eliminate the Penguins.
The Pens were pretty much annihilated by the Islanders in the first two games...