Penguins 5-0 On The Road, New Team Record
The Pittsburgh Penguins have started the 2009-2010 season off with a bang. Not only were they able to hang their Stanley Cup Championship banner before the first game of the year, they are off to a great start. At 6-1-0, their only loss came to the Phoenix Coyotes who quite simply played better than Pittsburgh did. The Pens have gone 5-0 in their first 5 road games which gave them a new team record.
The season has started off great, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t improvements to be made. My thoughts are below.
1.) Alex Goligoski has done an outstanding job. During the off-season, I was a little worried with his 3 year deal worth around 5 million dollars. At this point, that salary cap hit looks to be a steal. I am just hoping that Goligoski can keep up his great start throughout the season.
2.) The Power Play is still a concern. Even though the Pens started the season off fairly well with the power play, the problems appear to be coming again. Prior to the playoffs last season, the Pens power play was pathetic and is starting to look that way again this year. There is plenty of time to make appropriate changes and see if improvements can be made, so I am not too worried about it.
3.) Jay McKee has been an excellent replacement for the loss of Rob Scuderi. Scuderi is definitely showing his worth over in Los Angeles, but Jay McKee leads the team in blocked shots and has done a pretty good job overall thus far. You can’t beat what he has brought to the team thus far considering the cap hit for the season. I don’t see the Penguins keeping him next year unless he takes a major pay cut.
4.) Jordan Staal has been a beast so far this season. He only has four points (which three of those are goals) but it is not the points that matter. He has shown off his two-way play and so far as had a pretty impressive year. People around Pittsburgh thought this might be the year he would stand out from the crowd (which is extremely difficult in Pittsburgh considering Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby). There is little to no doubt around the league to which team has the best lineup of centers in the NHL.
I know that most of my thoughts are positive, but so far I have not seen a whole lot I have been disappointed with or worried about. Obviously, this pace cannot keep up and the Pens will experience some down games, but I have no doubt that this Pens team is extremely confident and will be able to get through whatever this season throws at them.
Let’s Go Pens!