We've had a good share of discussions here on Pensburgh surrounding the concept of the shootout lately. Since it came into effect after the lockout, experts, players and coaches have sided with it or against it. For all that can be said of the shootout though, it's an element of the league that remains until the playoffs. In other words, love it or hate it, you have to deal with it.
But for the Penguins, and especially us fans, we shouldn't have any problem dealing with it. While most of us may be confident enough in this corp of players to think they could take it down in sudden death come playoff time, for the time being it's nice to know that whenever the Pens go up against anyone in the shootout they remain one of the toughest teams to beat.
Following last night's 2-1 shootout win over the Sabres, the Pens are now 6-0 in the shootout. Guys like Kris Letang, Sidney Crosby and Marc-Andre Fleury just know how to step it up an extra notch and really shine in the one-on-one element.
It may "just" be one extra point at the time, but as we look to close out the first three months of the season, the Penguins have six extra points in the standings because of how well they do after they take it past overtime. It all adds up in the end, especially for a team that gives every indication of a playoff berth.
After the jump, we take a look at how each Penguin shooter (and goalie) is doing in the shootout.
Both Fleury and Johnson combine for a .947 save percentage, also the best in the league in the shootout. Buffalo ranks second with .833.
Again, say what you will about the shootout, but this group of guys knows how to get it done. You also have to chalk up some praise for Dan Bylsma, who insists on making a game out of the shootout during practice. Each guy gets a chance to work on some moves, Fleury gets a chance to defend against some of the best shooters in the league and, in the long run, the Pens will be a better team because of it.