Found December 14, 2013 on The PensNation:
By: Melissa Esing (@Off_thepost)   Photo Credit: Justin K. Aller/Getty Images   Throughout the 2013-2014 NHL season, I’ll be posting player features each Friday, with the exception of this week.  Today, we’re going to take a look at Simon Despres.  Former 2009 first-round pick, Simon Despres, worked hard to improve his consistency and efforts while with the Wilkes-barre/Scranton Penguins, and showed his worth off to the Pittsburgh Penguins. He was the most likely player to be called up. He’s the type of player with offensive instincts, but he’s pushed to focus more on his defensive skills. This, without a doubt, is a period of reconstruction for Despres in order to keep him in the line up. In 2012-2013′s shortened season, he finished out with +9 while producing seven points over a 33-game period. Not too shabby, for a rookie. However, after the season, Despres no longer had a spot on the team. It was hard to maintain a spot after the signing of Rob Scuderi. With Paul Martin out 4-6 weeks on injured reserve due to a fractured tibia, this opened the doors wide for Despres to prove himself. Martin is easily one of our top defenseman, which isn’t someone you can simply replace, leaving big shoes to fill. Joining Martin’s absence is Brooks Orpik, leaving an even bigger gap for the Penguins’ defense to fill. It’s quite a loss having the two of them out, and in such a crucial time, the Penguins looked to their young, developing Wilkes-barre/Scranton Penguins. That’s where Despres comes in to play. He’s not at a level where he can play the amount of minutes-per-game that Martin plays, but this is a great new start for him to reestablish himself. While playing against the Toronto Maple Leafs in November, Despres put up four shots on goal, which Dan Bylsma was rather impressed by. “He stepped up against a team with speed, and he did a great job,” said Bylsma. Although he’s been putting forth visible effort, Despres knows he doesn’t have a secure spot with the team yet. “There’s no relaxing,” said Despres. “There’s no guarantee that I’ll be in the lineup. I have to prove it everyday and everygame. I have to be solid.” This 22-year-old hasn’t made a name for himself in the NHL just yet, but then again, he’s 22. He has time, and time will serve him well as long as he shows consistency, effort and focus. With injury on top of injury for the Penguins, there is no better time to shine and earn your place on the team. Photo Credit: Jared Wickerham/Getty Images  

Thoughts: Game 33 – Penguins vs Devils

Penguins 3  Devils 2 By: Meesh Shanmugam (@HockeyMeesh) Goals Dupuis (5) from Kunitz, Crosby Conner (2) from Sutter, Vitale Megna (4) from Despres, Engelland Goal Assessment First Goal For (Dupuis) With four players behind the Penguins’ net, Kris Letang skates through and pokes a puck free to Sidney Crosby on the boards in the defensive zone. Crosby holds the puck to draw a forechecker...

Pittsburgh Penguins reveal Stadium Series uniforms

The Pittsburgh Penguins showed off their new stadium series jerseys on Friday for their outdoor game against the Chicago Blackhawks at Soldier Field on March 1st. The jersey features a shinier Penguins logo, new striping scheme on the shoulders and arms and a new number font.  All of which look pretty good and give the uniform a nice new look. It’s too bad they aren’t wearing...

Shawn Thornton Suspended 15 Games For Attacking Orpik

Credit: Jared Wickerham/Getty Images The wait is finally over. After being suspended indefinitely before his hearing with the NHL Department of Player Safety yesterday afternoon in New York City, the league has officially suspended Bruins forward Shawn Thornton 15 games for attacking Penguins defenseman Brooks Orpik on December 7th in Boston. Thornton pulled Orpik down from behind...

Evgeni Malkin Helped Off Ice After Falling Backward Into Boards During Third Period (GIF)

Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin had to be helped off the ice during the third period of Saturday night’s game after hurting his left leg. Malkin went crashing into the boards while chasing down Detroit’s Luke Glendening in an attempt to break up a two-on-one chance for the Red Wings. The two players made contact near the Pittsburgh net, and the Penguins star lost his...

Penguins' Malkin hurts left leg against Red Wings

Pittsburgh Penguins star Evgeni Malkin hurt his left leg against the Detroit Red Wings and the team hopes he doesn't have a long-term injury. Malkin got tangled up with Detroit's Luke Glendening, lost balance and his left skate took the brunt of a collision with the boards behind Pittsburgh's net. The Russian forward slowly got up and kept his left skate in the air...

Devils' rally falls short as Penguins hold on for victory

Pascal Dupuis scored 41 seconds into the game and the streaking Pittsburgh Penguins used a big first period to beat the New Jersey Devils 3-2 on Friday night. Chris Conner and Jayson Megna also scored in the first for Metropolitan-leading Pittsburgh, which has won seven of eight. The Penguins also extended their home winning to seven games. Marc Andre-Fleury improved to 12-2 at...

Penguins to debut their Stadium Series jersey. It is probably underwhelming.

The Penguins are playing in like their 450th outdoor game. Apparently they will have new jerseys: What, no blue?

The Pittsburgh Penguins' Stadium Series Jersey is Revealed

Because you can't have an outdoor game without including the Pittsburgh Penguins somehow, here is their jersey. Honestly, we kind of like it. At least it's not blue. EDIT: After looking at it more, we might like it more than their current away jersey. The gold looks like gold and the striping is much, much better. Swap out the chrome crest for the regular...

Orpik skates with injured teammates

Penguins defenseman Brooks Orpik skated with other injured teammates on Friday morning at Consol Energy Center. Six days earlier, Orpik was the victim of an attack from Boston's Shawn Thornton, who will receive a punishment from the NHL at a hearing today. The Penguins have confirmed that Orpik sustained a concussion from the incident and that he was unconscious for at least...

Penguins’ Stadium Series Uniforms Unveiled, Feature Only Minor Tweaks (Video)

The Penguins revealed their special Stadium Series uniform on Friday, and they’re … not all that different from the jerseys they wear every night. The new duds, which Pittsburgh will wear for its March 1 matchup against Chicago at Soldier Field, adhere to the Series’ “chrome” theme, but apart from some minor tweaks to the shoulder panels and sleeve stripes, they bear a...

Deryk Engelland ejected after clipping Justin Abdelkader’s chin

  In the first period of Saturday night’s tilt between the Detroit Red Wings and Pittsburgh Penguins, Deryk Engelland served a match-penalty and was ejected from the game after clipping Justin Abdelkader in the chin. Abdelkader left the game and would not return. (GIF courtesy of ThePensBlog) Engelland will likely be suspended. The post Deryk Engelland ejected after clipping...

Ryan Wilson: Fleury Shines In Victory Over Devils + Penguins Red Wings Preview

The Pittsburgh Penguins held on to beat the visiting New Jersey Devils 3-2 on Friday night. The Penguins jumped out to an impressive 3-0 lead and then watched the Devils seize control of the game for the final 2 periods. The Penguins were able to hang on and Marc Andre Fleury was the reason why. Here are the game highlights: Here is the possession chart, which I...

Game 34: Penguins vs. Red Wings Recap

Three points for Evgeni Malkin continued the greatness of who has arguably been the most effective player in the NHL of late in the Penguins 4-1 win over the Detroit Red Wings. But it came at a cost. Malkin left the game with a left leg injury that left him with the inability to put…

Malkin injures leg in Penguins' win against Red Wings

Evgeni Malkin had a goal and two assists before hurting his left leg early in the third period of the Pittsburgh Penguins' 4-1 win over the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday night.

Devils-Penguins Preview

The Pittsburgh Penguins would much rather have their full roster intact, but they still have plenty of weapons despite the absence of key players. Help may be on the way soon for the slumping New Jersey Devils. Pittsburgh seeks its seventh victory in eight games Friday night as it hosts New Jersey, which has dropped four of five. Defenseman Brooks Orpik is out indefinitely with...
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