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           3290570935_3bcf3fcb7eNO STANLEY CUP HANGOVER HERE! The Pittsburgh Penguins have made the game of hockey look easy. The pens have won 7 out of 8 games and their 5th game straight by defeating the Lightning tonight, 4-1. This is a game that displayed what the penguins have been all about this year: SOLID PLAY IN EVERY AREA OF THE GAME.

        The defense has been solid and is probably the brightest spot thus far for the Penguins. Newcomer, Jay Mckee, has been a great addition. McKee is notorious for being one of the best shot blockers in the league and has lived up to that title so far. In a post game article by espn.com, Mckee said, “There are a lot of things clicking for us right now, especially defensively.” Sergei Gonchar is business as usual for the Pens, playing great at the blue-line on the power play and setting up plays in the neutral zone. 

       Marc-Andre Fleury has been superb, displaying a .922 save percentage and allowing an average of 2.09 goals a game. In past season, Fleury occasionally  acted nervous while in goal and made a number of “dumb” mistakes, especially late in the game. However, so far this season, he seems focused and poised. Defenseman, Jay Mckee also said: “Marc-Andre’s been our best player every night, but we’re all out there frustrating the other team.”

        While not displaying earth-shattering numbers, Malkin and Crosby have played very consistent and have shown great athleticism on the power play. Expected, but unexpected(if that makes sense),  production has come from 3rd liner, Tyler Kennedy, and 4th liner, Michael Rupp, chalking up 6 goals collectively. Rupp was added to the Pens’ already stunning lineup in the offseason because of a lack of toughness on the team.

         With all of the pieces of the puzzle in place and everything clicking, the Penguins look like they have a great chance to repeat. Staying healthy and motivated will be a key for them this year.

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