It’s starting to feel like ‘Groundhog Day’ every time the Pittsburgh Penguins hit the ice these days. As they have done seemingly all season, the Penguins fell behind early only to mount a late comeback to force overtime. This time it was against the Boston Bruins who raced out to a 2-0 lead before Jason Zucker and Kasperi Kapanen scored in the final 20 minutes to send the game to overtime.
Unlike the past four games however, the Penguins were unable to turn their comeback into an outright victory. Evgeni Malkin rang a shot off the crossbar in the extra period then blew a 2-on-0 with Kris Letang moments later. In turn, the Bruins had a 2-on-0 of their own that they were able to convert for the win. [Pensburgh]
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During a typical NHL season, the Penguins and Bruins would only meet three times and not be in the same division. That all changes this season with the pandemic alterations having them meet eight times so better read up on what to expect. [Penguins]
Another injury means another call-up from the taxi squad. This time it’s NCAA product Drew O’Connor who signed with the Penguins as a free agent back in March. O’Connor was No. 8 in our “Top 25 Under 25” list this offseason. [Penguins]
It’s been a rough go of it so far this season for Evgeni Malkin and the advanced stats are there to prove it. Among all forwards this season, Malkin ranks near the bottom in terms of impact on the ice, but his talent alone should pull him out of the early slump. [The Athletic $]
Kevin Czuczman hasn’t seen NHL action since 2014, but that’s no problem for him as long as he can keep playing the game he loves. Currently a member of the Penguins taxi squad, Czuczman finds motivation in the memory of his late father. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]
Winning ugly in never a bad thing, but at some point the Penguins are going to need to play from ahead rather than constantly relying on a comeback. While the Penguins have been winning games early they still have plenty to improve upon. [The Hockey Writers]
News and notes from around the NHL...
Perhaps you forgot, but the Seattle Kraken will join the NHL as its 32nd franchise later this year and they reminded everyone of that fact on Tuesday. Calling their games on television will be John Forslund who you may already be familiar with. [NHL]
There was a time not too long ago that the Colorado Avalanche posted one of the worst regular seasons in NHL history. Fortunately, general manager Joe Sakic had a plan a remained patient. The result of his work is a perennial Stanley Cup contender. [ESPN]