Sunday, January 30, 2011

A blessing in disguise

As the title of the blog says "a blessing in disguise", it is just that for the Pittsburgh Penguins. Losing their 2 best players in Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, it seemed that the Penguins were done for. Playing without their 2 superstars for the first time since 2006-2007, a span of 437 games, im sure Penguins fans don't want to reminisce the state of their franchise before these two superstars arrived (with the exception of the Lemieux era). Without Crosby and without Malkin, the Penguins are trying to desperately to stay aloft in the tightly-congested Eastern Conference, and they are doing a good job so far. The Penguins, as of Jan.30.2011, have gone 5-4 without Crosby in the lineup (out since Jan.1.2011) and 2-1 without Malkin in the lineup (out since Jan 19.2011). The records are average but nonetheless they are still winning records and in this league that is all that matters. The Penguins, as of Jan 30.2011, sit 4th in the Eastern Conference, 1 point away from the 2nd place Tampa Bay Lightning, pretty impressive if you ask me. The sole reason as to why the Penguins have been able to stay alive in the East is because of their depth players. Players such as Kris Letang (41 pts, 2nd behind crosby) Chris Kunitz (33 pts), Alex Goligoski (26 pts) have been able to step up and provide valuable points game in and game out for the Penguins. In fact the Penguins (without Crosby and Malkin) have 12 players in double figures (more than 10 points). With injuries to Crosby and Malkin, these role players have been stepped up big and have kept Penguins fans believing again.

As I stated at the beginning of the season, more in the off season, the Pittsburgh Penguins will win the 2011 Stanley cup. They will beat the Vancouver Canucks in 7 games in the final. I personally was very impressed with the moves the Penguins made in the off season with the additions of Martin, and Michalek, after losing Sergei Gonchar to Free Agency and i believe that they got stronger as a team, even more stronger than when they won the cup back in 2008-09 season.

The "Blessing in disguise" for the Penguins comes in the form of the injuries to Malkin and Crosby. Casual fans will right away assume that injuries to the two superstars are devastating but fans with a love and sense for the game will ponder all possibilities of the injury and the effects on the team before coming to a rational decision. This is exactly what i did. I pondered and pondered. At first i too was guilty of thinking that the injuries were "bad" for the Penguins but then i gave it some thought: "With all the hockey that these two play, with a special emphasis for Crosby, the injuries might not be a bad thing after all because it gives these two players some very much needed rest" It is evident how much and how hard these players play. Just watch Crosby's NHL Commercial on Youtube where he is working on balancing on the board and simultaneously catching a ball. Also another funny example i found was on The Hockey News website. One of the cool features of this website is that it lets you find any player's strength and weaknesses, past or present. Its called "player bio". For Crosby one of his weakness ( i know shocking) is the fact that he works himself too hard. This is taken directly from the website, under weaknesses: " Could stand to pace himself a little." And this true. Between all the hockey he plays during the regular season and the deep runs in the playoffs with the exception of last year, and coupled with playing for Team Canada at the Olympics in Vancouver, Crosby definitely needed some rest one way or another.

With the Injuries to Malkin and Crosby and the Penguins managing to keep aloft in the Eastern Conference, the Penguins are looking to make yet another serious run in the playoffs. We all know for a fact that they will make the playoffs its just a matter of how far they are going to get. And think of it this way, a healthy and well-rested Crosby and a healthy and well rested Malkin come post season time is just what the "doctor" ordered for yet another cup for the Pittsburgh Penguins.

I'd like to hear from you. What are your opinions and ideas on the injuries to Crosby and Malkin? Do the Penguins have enough for another cup run?

Please feel free to comment and hope you enjoyed my post

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Just a guy trying to make a living on the internet. Have had no luck with other jobs.