Pens Fans, Save Your Hate For Hartnell by @ChicksDigHockey

I’m not some hipster hockey fan. I'm not that cool. If Twitter were high school (and I’m not saying it isn’t) I would be sitting at the nerd table. I am a loyal Penguins fan. I do not hop on and off the bandwagon. In fact, I would likely be the one handing out instruments if such a wagon existed. 

“Cool” fans it seems, are negative... not so much by nature as by narrative. As a friend of mine is fond of saying, “It seems like you know what you’re talking about if you find a weak player and continually take a dump on him.” Cool fans are "I told you so" kind of people. They wait for someone to have a bad night then flood Twitter with "I told you so" Tweets.

 Take, for example; Pascal Dupuis. All the cool kids are up all bound up because they don't feel he belongs on the first line with Crosby. I believe that if an organization run by a legendary hockey hero and all around great human is willing to give him a chance to prove himself, who am I to question it?

Making the Piece Fit Back in the Puzzle by @BrianK_PI

By all accounts, Rob Scuderi wasn't what Ray Shero was hoping for last season when he signed him to a 4 year, $13.5 million contract. It's arguable that the Scuderi contract was the one mistake that pushed Shero over the edge and out of a job. It wasn't realistic to expect the same player who left Pittsburgh for Los Angeles just four years prior, but even reasonable expectations were much higher than what Scuderi was able to produce on the ice.

While it was possible to get rid of Shero, the Penguins appear to be stuck with Scuderi for at least one more season, and possibly three, at a cap hit of $3.375 million. It's hard to believe Jim Rutherford wasn't trying to move that contract after taking the job, but no other teams were willing to take on that deal. A standard buyout was a possibility in the offseason, but likely the cap penalty over the next four years was too much. And a change in the cap accounting stemming from the last lockout means most of Scuderi's cap hit will remain even if he's banished to the AHL. However, it's not out of the realm of possibility to believe that Rob Scuderi could have a bounce back season. It's certainly not the most likely outcome, but here's how it remains a possibility:

Pens Season Preview: Guest Roundtable Featuring @JoshYohe_Trib , @IanAltenbaugh, @Brian_Metzer, and @GunnerStaal

Season Preview: @kjcmalakai The Washington Capitals

Washington Capitals Season Preview

By: Ken Clawson (twitter @kjcmalakai)

Ken is my old high school friend, college roommate and friend of the site. He lives in the DC area and begrudgingly has assimilated some Capitals knowledge and has been kind enough to share some thoughts for the upcoming season. Give him a follow on twitter from the handle above.

Losses: Dustin Penner, Mikhail Grabovsky, Adam Oates (HC)
Additions: Matt Niskanen, Brooks Orpik, Justin Peters, Barry Trotz (HC)

Disappointment is a word that Washington Capitals fans have en-grained into their vocabulary as the window for a Stanley Cup Championship with Alex Ovechkin closes a little more with each springtime failure.  The 2013-2014 Washington Capitals entered the Metropolitan division with high hopes for a playoff berth and another run at the Stanley Cup.  Instead, the team finished 9th inthe Eastern Conference, missing the playoffs for the first time since 2007.  This season, a new coach and a revamped defense has Washington once again poised for a playoff and Stanley Cup run.

Adam Oates' Vampire ace got fired

Make Tomas Vokoun an Offer He Can't Refuse by @ChicksDigHockey

NBC Sports is reporting that former Pittsburgh Penguin goalie Tomas Vokoun has turned down offers from at least two NHL teams. Last June, Vokoun made it clear that he was not done with hockey despite missing all but two games of the 2013-14 season to a blood clotting disorder.

Allen Walsh, Vokoun's agent, said ,in part that that his client still wants to continue his career, but “only in the right situation.” Neither has elaborated as to what the right situation would be.

Vokoun who is 38 yrs old has been plagued by the blood clotting disorder throughout his career. Before backing up Marc Andre Fleury in Pittsburgh, he previously played for the Washington Capitals, Florida Panthers, Nashville Predators and the Montreal Canadiens, with whom he was originally drafted. He has 300 career wins.

The Death of the Spin-O-Rama by @ChicksDigHockey

I stand before you a broken woman. I feel as though the NHL has singled me out. I feel as though my guilty pleasure is being squeezed from the game I love.

They outlawed the “Spin-o-rama”.

5 Reasons the Penguins Will Capture the Metropolitan Division by @griffTHW

After another disappointing postseason, an offseason full of transition and a summer packed with criticism, the Pittsburgh Penguins will soon enter the 2014-'15 campaign looking to defend their Metropolitan crown.  Though all the new faces may lead to some growing pains, the Pens still possess enough tools to conquer the division for a second straight year. 

Will they enjoy another double-digit cushion in the standings throughout the season?  Probably not.  But, below, we present five reasons why Pittsburgh should, once again, rise to the top of the Metro.
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