The Penguins are back! The team took to the ice this morning in Cranberry, divided up into three “teams”.
Teams 1 and 2 will hold their first practice at 9:00 AM, followed by a scrimmage at 10:00 AM.— Penguins PR (@PenguinsPR) September 22, 2022
Team 3 will take the ice at 11:30 AM. pic.twitter.com/pgglAMaDxo
It did not take long for the scrimmages to begin with Sidney Crosby and Team 1 facing off against Evgeni Malkin and Team 2.
The lines being used were interesting, but should only be given so much attention. Training camp lines change nearly every day, and sometimes players even might be assigned to a different team.
Here are the lines for Team 2:— Matt Vensel (@mattvensel) September 22, 2022
(Ansons mixing in up front)
Nothing to glean from these combos.
Similar to last year, Jason Zucker and Radim Zohorna are on the same line on opening day of training camp, and like last year Kris Letang and Brian Dumoulin find themselves on different camp teams, as they often do. The team already knows what they have there and use this time to experiment.
Jeff Petry, the main addition of the off-season, finds himself skating with Marcus Pettersson right from the jump. This is not a coincidence and probably is something to draw attention — clearly the team wants to see what they have in a potential Petterson/Petry pairing and find out what kind of chemistry they can build here between the two.
Speaking of experimenting- without putting a lot of stock into literally day one tinkering, it is interesting to see Valtteri Puustinen get a look with what will be the first line with Crosby and Guentzel. This could be little more than just seeing what they have with Puustinen, Wilkes-Barre’s leading scorer last year, playing with the elite skill for potentially later down the line if needed.
Similarly, Malkin starting out with Bryan Rust and not having Rickard Rakell or Kasperi Kapanen on his first camp team may mean a little, but could also be a glimpse into preference for how Mike Sullivan is thinking. Rakell, interestingly enough, is on Crosby’s camp team, but not on his line.
It can’t be stressed enough though the temporary nature of camp lines and how these are destined to change. Drake Caggiula won’t be long for the Malkin-Rust line, and Puustinen probably won’t be either with Guentzel-Crosby.
Training camp is also fun and a reminder of the time before social media when Eric from Lets Go Pens dominated the early internet space with recaps. As a good dude and Pensburgh writer alum, be sure to follow on with what he is seeing!