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Pens Points: Capitals Game Day

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Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning one and all,

New head coach Mike Sullivan came in yesterday, met with the players and then ran a crisp first practice that lasted just under an hour, focusing mainly on breakout techniques. [Penguins]

Here are the four biggest takeaways in terms of what Sullivan plans to address in the near term as he takes over the reins of the team. [Penguins]

There were a lot of interviews after practice yesterday, so click these links to hear what they had to say: (1) Sullivan; (2) Crosby; (3) Bennett; (4) Kessel; (5) Sprong; and (6) Perron.

Pierre LeBrun writes that the Pens had no choice but to fire Mike Johnston with the team unable to generate any consistent offense in his system. He thinks that Jim Rutherford has one or two trades lines up, after which there will be no more rabbits to pull out of a hat. [ESPN]

In anticipation of what we can expect from Mike Sullivan's system, he is likely to focus on a more conventional breakout, without asking the forwards to swing back down low to retrieve the puck. He will also look to re-engage Sidney Crosby and the offense. [TSN]

At any rate, we will get a first look at Mike Sullivan-coached team this evening at Consol, where the Pens host the Caps. They are currently just a point outside of the playoff picture with a lot of divisional games yet to be played. [PPG]

We won't see Brooks Orpik play tonight or any time soon in fact. His injury was re-evaluated and he is now thought to be sidelined for a long time. [RMNB]

Thomas Greiss posted his 4th straight win with the Isles in a 4-0 shutout of the New Jersey Devils. I was confused while looking at the score sheet, "how did the Devils get shut out if Zidlicky scored two goals?" [USA Today]

The Steven Stamkos watch continues. The longer his contract extension remains "work in progress" the likelier it seems that he will bolt for Toronto in free agency in July. Or so say Toronto media. [Globe & Mail]

For the end, a long but good read on why hockey needs PK Subban now more than ever. [Sportsnet]

Don't forget to tune in tonight to watch a Pascal Dupuis tribute by the Pens and say goodbye to a universally beloved player. Here is a really good Pens of Anarchy Tribute to our Super Duper. [YouTube]