Penguins Won The Lottery With Kasperi Kapanen by @pghgirl15222

This Penguins preseason has been a game of injuries and puzzle pieces. With two of the best players in the game missing from the lineup it seems as if one of the most consistent things on the Penguins roster thus far has been this year’s first round draft pick Kasperi Kapanen.

The rookie forward has quite frankly looked absolutely fantastic thus far further proving that a whole bunch of teams messed up by not drafting him. Hey, as Penguins fans we thank you. Your loss is our gain.

General Manager Jim Rutherford has not been quiet about his opinion of the rookie, stating on more than one occasion that he has a real chance at cracking the starting roster on opening night. He has a strong puck possession game that is ideal for Johnston’s style of coaching.

As per a Tribune Review article  by Jason Mackey it seems Bill Guerin is also a big fan of the young forward. “He's a very, very mature kid for his age. Obviously having his father play so many years in the NHL, or playing with him and bringing him up that way, he's already a pro.”

Which Beer Would You Serve With a Sidney Crosby Goal? By @ChicksDigHockey

The leaves are turning, the humidity is gone and hockey season is here. If you can’t go to a Pens' game, the next best thing is getting together with friends to watch the game and have a few adult beverages.  I love planning get-togethers but I’m never sure what beer to serve.  Do I choose a beer based on the menu? If I marinate the steak for sliders in a lager I should serve that beer to drink as well….right? But what if I make a big pot of spicy chili to go with the sliders?  Do I amp up the hops and go for an IPA? 

Then it occurred to me.... everybody has a favorite player. Why not serve beer that goes with the player not the food? I could choose a beer based on the characteristics, skills and nationalities of the players.

I quickly realized I was in over my head. 

No problem! I hit up my friend Nick at Beer Bros Blog. Hosting/Covering beer events is his thing.  Because he’s good at the planning, pairing & piecing what beer goes where, I charged him with the task of translating this to the Pens for the upcoming season.

Pens Initiative: Nick, I’m planning a Penguins season opening party. I don’t want it to be about the food. I want to match the beer selection to the players. This is something new for me, can Beer Bros Blog help me?
Beer Bros Blog: Beer events have always been a thing.  They have, however, become a bigger thing.  The evolution of beer events has certainly reached new heights.  Food pairing, dinners, aging, educating yourself... these were all phrases synonymous with the world of wine.  The world has changed. Get out your notebook and get ready for beer 101.  It will be a great day for hockey... and beer. 

Ehrhoff and Johnston Just What Letang Needed by @MadChad412

What good is having extremely talented players if you refuse to put them in the best position to succeed? For all of the successes that Dan Bylsma had as head coach of the Pittsburgh Penguins, perhaps his biggest folly was not adapting his philosophies to his players, instead forcing them to adapt to his system. Bylsma, who liked to play aging veterans as well guys that would "grind it out" over younger more-skilled alternatives, was truly holding back some of his players and teams from reaching their full potential. Bylsma was fired this off-season, along with general manager Ray Shero. 

Marc-Andre Fleury to Shoulder the Load by @PandaPSU

The start of the Penguins season is 10 days away, and there are certainly a lot of questions that remain unanswered. The purpose of training camp and the preseason significantly increased when the Penguins essentially cleaned house over the summer and brought in a new coaching staff and many new front office positions. This is the time for players to start gelling with the new staff and vice versa. Things haven't exactly been smooth so far at Consol Energy Center, and that puts a lot of the burden on one man -- Marc-Andre Fleury.

Pens Send Megna Back To Wilkes/Barre, Kapanen might make opening roster

The Pittsburgh Penguins have cut more players from their roster. The Pens sent down assign forwards Jayson Megna and Dominik Uher, and defenseman Reid McNeill to their farm team in Wilkes-Barre.

How the Injury to "Glass Beau" Bennett Affects the Penguins' Depth and Power-Play by @DXTraeger

To call the career of Pittsburgh Penguins forward Beau Bennett "mercurial" is fair, and mercurial is a contextually appropriate assessment of his play given the bevy of talented yet unproductive skaters that have historically dotted the NHL landscape.

With today's news that Beau Bennett suffered an apparent knee injury during practice at the Consol Energy Center comes the reality that whatever untapped potential Bennett may possess may have to be realized for another team.

As a California kid with frosted hair tips, Bennett was always a feel-good story of home-grown American hockey talent.  His path to the NHL included time as a roller hockey player since, contrary to what NHL Commissioner would have you believe, frozen ponds do NOT typically line the drought and desert-filled Californian coast.

In 2012, then-GM Ray Shero signed Bennett to a three year entry-level deal with the Penguins, and Bennett turned out to be Shero's only real offensive draft acquisition during Shero's tenure with the team.

Whether or not the pressure of being the only NHL-caliber forward in the Penguins' farm system ever affected Bennett's production is a matter of debate.  What can't be denied is that a string of wrist injuries, stemming from his time at the University of Denver, continued into the NHL and denied the popular young player of valuable ice time and opportunities.

After losing much of the 2013-2014 season to wrist and various other body ailments, Bennett was enjoying a stellar pre-season and seemed poised to help anchor a revitalized third line alongside Brandon Sutter and offseason acquisition Steve Downie.

Beau Bennett Leaves Practice with Knee Injury UPDATED

Poor Beau Bennett.  So much potential but constantly snake bit.  Today becomes the latest chapter in his book as Beau leaves the ice at the end of practice with a non-contact knee injury.

In the 11 o'clock hour reports began to trickle out from various sources saying of Bennett's injury.  He left practice early with what looked to be a serious knee injury sustained in a non-contact drill.

Further words began to flow that the ice conditions at Consol were to blame.

No words yet on Bennett's condition.  Stay with Pens Initiative for updates.

UPDATE: Coach Johnston reports that Bennett's injury is not "as bad as it looks."

UPDATE #2: Bennett takes to Twitter to vent, apologize.  Someone hug him.  He could use it.

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