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Pens Points: Needing a Win

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In desperate need of a win, Penguins head to Washington D.C. for rivalry showdown with the Capitals. Start your gameday morning off right with a fresh helping of Pens Points.

NHL: Washington Capitals at Pittsburgh Penguins Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Already riding a four game losing streak, things will not be getting any easier for the Penguins as they head to the nation’s capital to face the Washington Capitals this evening in a nationally televised showdown. In an attempt to shake things up, the Penguins made a few recalls and a few line shuffles in practice. It still remains to be seen just exactly how Mike Sullivan will approach tonight’s game in hopes of ending this current slide.

Puck drop is scheduled for 7:30 PM and will be broadcast on NBCSN.

Catch up on the latest Pens news before puck drop with tonight’s Pens Points...

In an attempt to break this funk they are currently in, the Penguins decided to shake up the roster with a few moves on Tuesday. General manager Jim Rutherford announced the recall of both Zach Aston-Reese and Garrett Wilson from the AHL with Derek Grant being sent down in a corresponding move. [Pensburgh]

Following Monday night’s drubbing at the hands of the Devils, several Penguins players vented about the team’s current struggles and what they need to do moving forward to get back on track. [Penguins]

Maybe a trip to Washington for a matchup with the rival Capitals is exactly what the doctor ordered for the Penguins to get back in the win column. Beating the Capitals this evening would not only give the Penguins a much needed boost in the standings but also mean just a little bit more given the opponent. [Trib Live]

It will be more than a few lineup changes against the Capitals being used as an attempt to bolster the Penguins. Head coach Mike Sullivan experimented with a few new look power play units at practice on Tuesday in hopes of getting last season’s best man advantage attack back to scoring goals. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]

Another lineup experiment from practice on Tuesday that we could see tonight in Washington was the separation of Evgeni Malkin and Phil Kessel on the second line. Sullivan dropped Kessel to the third line centered by Sheahan and slotted Hornqvist into the right wing slot alongside Malkin. [Pensburgh]

Frustrated from losing and a slow start to the season, winger Patric Hornqvist is showing his leadership abilities while the Penguins fight through a rough stretch. While reporters descended on Malkin following Monday’s loss, Hornqvist directed their attention to him to take some pressure off his teammate. [Pensburgh]

If you weren’t following the news on Monday as the Penguins game was near puck drop, you may have missed the video of a group of Ottawa Senators players trashing their coach and the organization as a whole. It appears the tape was recorded without the players’ knowledge, something Sidney Crosby believes crossed the line. [Trib Live]

It was no fun as a Penguins fan watching Brian Boyle score a hat trick on Monday night, but knowing what he battled through over the past year softened the blow a bit. Nick Maraldo, a Penguins fan himself, gave his thoughts on Boyle’s big night over at Pat McAfee’s new website. [Pat McAfee Show]

Do you like dogs? Of course you like dogs because dogs are the perfect animal. Well if you enjoy both dogs and Penguins players hanging out with dogs then you are in luck. The Penguins annual “Penguins & Paws” charity calendar will go on sale November 23rd at www.humaneanimalrescue.org. [Penguins]

News and notes from around the NHL...

After three Stanley Cup victories since 2010 but only struggles the last two seasons, the Chicago Blackhawks fired head coach Joel Quenneville on Tuesday. Jeremy Colliton was hired to replace Quenneville and becomes the NHL’s youngest bench boss at the age of 33. [CBC]

Seeing the news of the Quenneville firing came as a shock to some but the writing may have been on the wall for some time. Given Quenneville’s impressive resume as an NHL head coach, it’s unlikely he will be out of work for long. [USA Today]