Gameday Conference Quarterfinals #4: @ New York Islanders

penguinsvsisles

 

PITTSBURGH PENGUINS @ New York Islanders

Nassau County War Veteran’s Coliseum, 7:00 PM, Root Sports, NBC Sports, 105.9 the X

I’m sick of this series. If you would like to read my previously unpublished thoughts on game 3 and the media (both mainstream and “new”) check out my Google doc here. If you would like to read some informed critiques about the Penguins take a gander at Sean Griffin’s piece at The Hockey Writers, and this seriously good read from Dejan in Monday’s Trib.

We know, we know, the Islanders are fast, they almost seem hungrier than the Penguins, and this is not what most dreamed about after the game one beatdown. But here are the facts of the series: the Pens are up 2-1, they can play .500 hockey and still win the series, Fleury has posted better numbers than he has in his postseason career, and the scorers are doing exactly what they need to do.

As such, the Pens need to keep their composure and suck the life from the Islanders faithful. We suspect that they will get some help in the form of Brooks Orpik returning to the lineup.

molinari-orpik-game3

They sure need someone to come in and not be a liability, something they have not gotten from Deryk Engelland or Simon Despres so far this series. It also seems possible that James Neal could return tonight, although Coach Dan won’t say anything one way or the other regarding those two.

potash-roster-game4

If and when Neal is able to return the Penguins are going to have to make a move to swap Jarome Iginla to Sid’s right wing, and bring Chris Kunitz to Geno’s left. Mike Colligan wrote about it so I won’t say another word.

The Pens have had two days to fix their flaws, have they done it? We shall see.

Get three. Go Pens.

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2 Comments on “Gameday Conference Quarterfinals #4: @ New York Islanders”

  1. cliffneill55 says:

    Don’t sound as confident as a fan of a team that won the Eastern Conference should be. Tonight is huge. There is something you should understand about this team and its fans. The last 25 years(with the exception of 93 and somewhat 2002) have largely been a toturous death march towards oblivion. No hope. Insane trades, draft picks, statements, moves, and not enough words to properly illustrate the events during this era. Even more difficult for those of us that remember the Dynasty years. Finally it looks as if all those prospects we’ve been hearing about may FINALLY be paying off. Islanders fans are like abused hungry dogs and if you mess with us we will attack most savagely. This team has proven more than I ever thought they could especially with all the young prospects, dumpster diver retreads(that seem to have worked), and past their prime very small handful of former stars. Comparing rosters is crazy because it’s not even close. But they seem to have the heart and unwillingness to just be happy to make it in the playoffs. They are dangerous because they not only think, but know they can beat “the dream team”. Maybe they just go down to defeat but I can guarantee it will not be easy. This will be a very valuable experience for this team win or lose. If the team makes the right steps to augment the lineup with a couple of samrt trades for offensive forwards(and yes they are only a couple of players away) this team should be force for the next few years. Watch out.

    • reggieshouse says:

      Well you’re right in a lot of areas. And personally I don’t dislike the Islanders as a team. We certainly had an era of decline in Pittsburgh so that’s why I have sympathy for the Isles. But I wouldn’t say I lack confidence in this team, in fact if you compare me to other Penguins writers I think I believe far more than them. But this series reminds me so much of the first playoff series of the “New Penguins” in 2007, they were competitive in the series, that doesn’t mean they didn’t lose in 5.


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