NHL Season Preview: Pittsburgh Penguins

NHL Season Preview: Pittsburgh Penguins

Jarrett Bailey, Sports Writer

It is that time of year again. Late September into early October is officially hockey time, and in this area, it means all Penguin fans rejoice as the near of yet another season is in the air. With the Penguins coming off a year in which they started of strong and crumbled in the late-season push and fell to the Rangers in Round One of the playoffs, they knew it was time to add another big piece of the puzzle. They did just that as they made the biggest move of the off-season, acquiring superstar Phil Kessel from the Maple Leafs. Kessel has had 7 straight 20+ goal seasons, and his addition will put another big name in the lineup and take a little of the load off of Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin. With this move, it is obvious that this season is Stanley Cup or bust in Pittsburgh. It has been made known that Kessel will be on the first line with Crosby, and that opens a number of different combinations of wingers to rotate on the first 3 lines. Chris Kunitz and Pascal Dupuis will definitely be rotating between the first two or three lines. This means that both will still get great time in their shifts playing alongside Geno and Sid. Marc-Andre Fluery was incredible in the playoffs and through the course of the 2014 regular season, and their defensive group, led by Kris Letang and Olli Mattaa, is among the NHL’s best. Mike Johnston now has the crew of a lifetime. An “NHL Dream Team” so to speak. If the Pens do not bring home Lord Stanley’s hardware at the end of the season, there is something wrong.

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