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Saturday, March 29, 2014

Pens Will Have Fresh Players For The Playoffs by @LCJS

This seems like so long ago.


With 8 games remaining in the regular season and the Penguins already having clinched a playoff berth, you would think there would be a little optimism surrounding the team.

You would be wrong.

It seems no matter where you look, there are reasons to doubt the Pens. You can look at their last 10 games and see a 4-5-1 record that doesn’t exactly exude confidence. You can read through the injury report, which is long enough to make the novel War and Peace look like a pamphlet. You can still remember last year’s playoff disaster.

And the one the year before that.

And the one the year before that.

And so on.

Back to 2009.


No, fans these days seem to be taking a cautious approach.  Maybe it's because we're expecting the team to always make the playoffs.

Perhaps it's because we also expect to be let down once they get in the playoffs.  Whatever the reason, I see more and more fans not getting their hopes up.

Smart move.

Currently, things are quite stale.

With the team playing like they are beaten up and worn out, an infusion of fresh, healthy bodies at this time of yeah could be the answer.  Just last night, Beau Bennett returned to the lineup for the first time since November and scored the game winning goal.  He looked every bit a player who was coming off a good, long rest.

Soon, players like Paul Martin will be back.  Malkin will also have had a nice rest before the post season.  Perhaps this infusion of freshness is just what the team needs as the grind of the regular season comes to a close

The huge lead the Pens had built in the division has dwindled some, but it's understandable with all of these injuries finally catching up with them.  Getting players back for the Cup run will help this team more than any move they could have made at the trade deadline.

If the Pens are going to make this post-season different than seasons past, it's going to have to come down to one word:

Freshness.

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Lee can be followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LCJS  

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