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Groupthinking the Penguins' 6-2 loss to the Sabres out of exsistence

Quickly now, close your eyes. Think really, really hard. I mean REALLY hard. Squint, strain, use all of the muscles on your forehead and, most importantly of all, your brain.

Now WISH! Wish really, really, really hard.

If we all put our combined wishing power together, maybe, just maybe we can wish the Penguins' 6-2 loss to the Sabres out of existence.

To make it no more, and simply allow us to bask in the afterglow of the Ray Shero's contractual consumation of the club's relationship with James Neal earlier in the day.

We can wish that Brent Johnson never had to start, and never gave up three goals, and never had to be pulled.

Or that Marc-Andre Fleury never had to enter the game in relief, and never gave up another three goals, putting up the exact same stat line as Johnson.

Perhaps we could will out of existence the combined -8 rating that Kris Letang and Paul Martin put up. And magically nullify the 2 for 11 performance Evgeni Malkin had in the face off circle (and keep wishing that he isn't actually hurt, like Hooks suggested on Twitter).

Just wish it away, and make all of it unreal.

Well, except for Deryk Engelland's sweet one-timed goal. He may have had a wish or two granted when he pulled that off.

A smart bet would've actually been to put money on the Sabres today. Rapidly falling adrift in the Eastern Conference standings, Buffalo had dropped four straight, including a tough shootout loss to the Canadiens on Friday, heading into the contest.

The Penguins, meanwhile, played the hated, loathed, despised (a.k.a. rival) Philadelphia Flyers yesterday in a physical, high-scoring affair between two good teams jockeying for position near the top of the Eastern Conference standings.

A letdown could've, and maybe should've, been expected. A letdown of this magnitude, however, is pretty inexcusable.

The Penguins actually modestly outshot the Sabres 26-24, but most of Buffalo's chances were of the high-quality variety.

The Pens get a couple of nights off before they host the New York Rangers on Tuesday. I think it's safe to say -- without even wasting a wish -- that we'll see a fairly different performance from the Penguins on home ice against the Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference pacesetters.