It’s been a little over 24 hours since the Pittsburgh Penguins learned their first round opponent will be the New York Islanders and the excitement has only been building since. Sadly, the Penguins along with their fans are still eagerly awaiting for the NHL to release the series schedule so we can all learn when the journey to the Stanley Cup begins.
Welcome in Wednesday with a new Pens Points...
After a brief wait, the Penguins now know their opponent for the upcoming first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. It will be a showdown against the much reviled New York Islanders and there are three crucial areas that could determine who advances. [Pensburgh]
Just in time for their meeting with the Islanders, the Penguins appear to be getting some key components back in the lineup. Both forward Brandon Tanev and defenseman Mike Matheson practiced with the team on Tuesday. [Pensburgh]
Depending on when exactly the Penguins open their series with the Islanders, they may do so with more fans in the stands. On Tuesday, the Penguins announced the capacity limit inside PPG Paints Arena will be upped to 50% beginning May 17th. [Penguins]
If you look at the Penguins overall success this season and what they went through to achieve what they did, you might think Mike Sullivan is a Jack Adams favorite. Sadly, Sullivan does not seem to be among the leading group for the award. [Pensburgh]
This postseason will mark the second time in three years that the Penguins and Islanders have met in the playoffs. Back in 2019, the Islanders swept the Penguins right out of the playoffs and this version of the Islanders is just as dangerous. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]
Regardless of who the Penguins went up against in the first round, there was going to be plenty of familiarity between the two sides. Though it’s been awhile since they last played, there will be no love lost between the two sides when the series begins. [Newsday]
Not many people were picking the Penguins to win the East Division when the season began but they surprised us all and did just that. Now it’s time for the real test and it will be up to the Penguins to back up their strong regular season. [Trib Live]
News and notes from around the NHL...
The next group of NHL head coaches and front office personnel is already taking shape and could feature a lot of history makers. From women in positions of power and decision making to overseas highers, there is a lot to be excited about. [ESPN]
We’re a long way from worrying about free agency this summer but it never hurts to keep tabs on the big names hitting the market. With a stagnant salary cap heading into next season it will be interesting to see what the top players reel in. [TSN]