The Penguins Preseason Should be Starting Today

The title pretty much says it all. The Pens were scheduled to face off against the Columbus Blue Jackets in the first preseason game of the year. At this point we ought to be debating whether Tangradi can really play wing for Sid, and who out of Despres, Joe Morrow, and others will assert themselves as the best young defenseman on the team.

Also, if you didn’t know, all the preseason games in September are cancelled—woo hoo. Get more stuff after the jump.

Instead we’re motivated to tell you to check out the Internet for streams of Metallurg HC’s matchup against Neftekhimik. In a recent interview Geno said that he only feels “70%” despite the fact that he’s going into his fourth game in the KHL this year (as per PHT). This would also perhaps be the first chance that most people have to see Nail Yakupov, this year’s number one overall pick, play against real competition.

It is easy to say that it’s just the preseason, and that these games don’t matter anyway: but ultimately this is another significant deadline that is flying past without any meaningful news regarding where the two sides—that can only mean one of two things…

  1. Either the two sides haven’t had any meaningful talks at all.
  2. Any talks they have had have been so bad that the media doesn’t even care to report on them.

The two sides are supposed to meet formally for the first time since before the lockout today (as per THN). Of course they aren’t expected to actually talk about labor situations; they’re just supposed to talk about the revenues that the league generated last week. I know I’m a painful optimist when it comes to this but so long as the two sides continue to talk there is hope for a season. It’s been mentioned before but the PA and the Owners would go for months without uttering a sound to one another back in 04-05 so this is already better.

Some dude who works for the Red Wings said some really controversial things basically referring to the Players as cows; he ended up getting fined a lot of money for it. Read the story at PHT.

Apparently a lot of Penguins players don’t feel the same excitement to play in the KHL that Evgeni Malkin does. (from the Trib) Admittedly the guys that Yohe asked about playing in the KHL likely won’t be getting any offers anytime soon—Tangradi, Kennedy, and Tanner Glass to name a few—but the article does raise some good points. We love to complain about the seeming lack of regard for player safety in the NHL, but the KHL definitely takes that notion to another level. Everyone remembers the loss of the entire Lokomotiv team last year in a horrible plane crash, but it’s easy to forget about the death of Alexei Cherapanov in the middle of a game back in the 2008 season. There’s no question that the KHL represents a higher level of talent and a bigger threat to the NHL than what existed the last time the league locked out, but ultimately it still doesn’t really match that level of fit, finish, and polish that the NHL, despite its problems, has.

If you need any more reason to give a care about the preseason, never forget:

Go Geno.

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