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Pens Points: Can an Elite Power Play Carry a Team to the Cup?

Can an elite power play carry a team to the Cup? Why do Crosby and Hornqvist work so well together? Steve Downie knows a thing or two about the Penguins-Flyers rivalry. Jeff Zatkoff injured.

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Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Here we go. Pens host the Flyers tonight in the debut of the new third jerseys. Marc-Andre Fleury will be in goal, as Thomas Greiss will finally make his debut on the road Thursday or Saturday.

We all know that the Pens have an elite power play. It's clicking at an unreal rate right now, but it's been pretty great for a while now. The question is, though: can an elite power play carry a team to the Cup?

Here is a really, really good article on Crosby and Hornqvist, or a happy combination of volume and efficiency. He upended Pascal Dupuis, who also had to switch wings, which isn't a problem for him. I wish there were about 5 Dupers on this team.

No rest for the weary. The Flyers played last night in Chicago and got shut out 4-0, and tonight we'll see them in Pittsburgh. There were some fisticuffs in that game thanks to this hit by Jones on Ben Smith.

Steve Downie knows a bit about the Penguins-Flyers rivalry. He seems happy he is on this side. RJ Umberger is anxious to experience it as a Flyer again.

Here's your latest scouting report on the Flyers. Good special teams (well their PK is not as good as it used to be), iffy in the bottom 6, average starting goalie, and a defense that doesn't do a good job defending. They're really not good right now, but don't let that fool you into comfort. They have a way of bringing out the worst in the Pens.

The baby Pens have a veritable logjam on D with the official assignment of Derrick Pouliot, but they are down the starting goalie, as Jeff Zatkoff left last night's game with a leg injury.

Pavel Datsyuk is back and he scored a vintage Datsyukian goal, which was sadly disallowed because Abdelkader supposedly interfered with Price. Boo.

Mike Babcock is reportedly looking for a 5-year, $3M per kind of contract. Never pegged him for the money guy. If that's the case, have fun in Toronto.

With all the money that town (Toronto I mean) is sinking into hockey, even a little bit of competence would go a long way. So they hired Mark Hunter as director of player personnel (and did you know that 4% of the NHL are former London Knights?).

All 30 NHL goal songs ranked by someone who I probably won't agree with. Anyway it's out there so check it out.

Alex Pietrangelo's little niece is fighting cancer, so he decided to join her fight, in a way that will touch your heart. After beating cancer, former Nailer Chris Kushneriuk found a home with the Everblades and keeps the dream alive of some day playing in the NHL.

Here are all the scores and highlights from last night. Just as we spent an entire day talking about this, Isles' Thomas Hickey suffered a significant cut after taking a skate blade to the mouth.

The Avs lost again, this time to the Panthers. Patrick Roy questions how hard they compete. Someone will die soon, crushed by a wave of French Canadian rage.

Here is Grantland's NHL Misery Index, rating some of the worst stretches some franchises have ever seen.

Anyway, Flyers tonight. New third jerseys for the first time tonight. Go Pens.