Today marks the final day of a 10 day All-Star/bye week break for the Penguins, as players return to Pittsburgh and will resume their season tomorrow night at PPG Paints Arena against the Flyers. If you recall, the Penguins dropped their final game before the extended break last Tuesday in Philadelphia. This game will mark the conclusion of perhaps the longest home-and-home series in NHL history.
Start your Thursday morning right here in Pens Points...
With the Flyers in town tomorrow night, it presents a good opportunity to assess where the rivalry stands. There is no questions both teams still hold a strong dislike for one another, but you have to wonder if another team has taken over as the top rival. [Pensburgh]
Not that it was ever in question, the Penguins agreed to terms on a long term contract with defenseman Marcus Pettersson on Monday. The new contract means the team has three top defensemen under contract through the 2021-22 season. [Pensburgh]
As the bye week comes to a close and the Penguins are set to begin the second half of the season, we can look back at some preseason predictions to see how they are panning out with February on the horizon. [Pensburgh]
It takes a lot of work to become a professional athlete and not all the work is done on the field, or in this case, on the ice. Tristan Jarry is having a breakout season, thanks in part to what he has learned away from the rink. [Penguins]
Ulf Samuelsson became one of the most popular players in Penguins history through his rough and tumble play. His eye for the game helped push him up the coaching ranks, somewhere he hopes to return to in the future. [Trib Live]
Hockey is an international game that brings in players from all over the world. When you fill locker rooms with various different nationalities, a language barrier can get in the way. For players outside of North American, overcoming that barrier can be crucial. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]
News and notes from around the NHL...
Reports in October indicated that the Seattle NHL franchise was planning to announce its team name prior to the All-Star Break. Well the break has come and gone without a name, but new reports are saying that a name has been chosen. [RMNB]
Wednesday was the annual “Bell Let’s Talk Day” to raise awareness for mental health issues. Along with the annual social media fundraiser came a very impactful video detailing how Bruins forward Patrice Bergeron helped a fellow teammate. [Stanley Cup of Chowder]