Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Removing Monkeys from backs

The slump has become a deep hole that the Penguins are mired in. 5 game losing streak, a seven game streak of no powerplay goals, a microscopic goals for figure in general, some shaky goaltending and defensive play.

But could this be as much mired in confidence and perception as it are in reality? We think so. Take a look at the overall record, 19-17-4. Nothing to brag on for sure, but still, a decent records. The Pens have taken their lumps to injuries, plugging in more faces than they'd care to do and arguably the worst stretch of games since the season we all try to forget, 2003-04. We think this could be snapped out of relatively quickly, but something is going to have to change.

Is it the coach? A personnel move? A certain free agent signing (paging Brendan Shanahan)? Could be any of those things for the long-term, but for tonight's game against Atlanta (a poor team that the Pens are 2-0 versus this season), how about thinking short term; let's get the first goal, or--dare we ask--a goal when the Thrashers are penalized. That would be, we think, a huge relief and burden off the shoulders of not only who scores it, but the whole team.

All the boys just need to loosen the grip on the sticks, keep pressing and it will come. It has to come. There's simply too much talent in the lineup for it not to.

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