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Thursday, December 11, 2008

Game Recap: New Jersey Devils 4 - Pittsburgh Penguins 1

The Pittsburgh Penguins lost their third game in a row last night, falling 4-1 to the New Jersey Devils. Matt Cooke had the lone goal for the Penguins, scoring with less than four minutes left in the game. It wasn't enough for the Penguins to put together another comeback. The Penguins have lost four out of their last five and have not won two games in a row since their six game winning streak at the beginning of November.

Scott Clemmensen played a good game for the Devils, who are now 8-2 in their last ten games. The Devils have learned how to play without Martin Brodeur, which will make them even more dangerous when Brodeur eventually returns.

Dany Sabourin had a decent game for the Penguins. He wasn't outstanding, but the Devils got a lucky bounce on the first goal, a deflection on the second and screened Sabourin affectively on the third. The bounces did not go the Penguins way, as they hit quite a few posts as well.

That's not to say the Penguins didn't have any problems. They still have issues with creating a presence in front of the opposition's net. In fact, their one goal game from Matt Cooke charging the net. The Penguins need to do this more. The team misses Ryan Malone in this respect, but they need to suck up and crash the net. Yes, they have a lot of offensive talent that likes to score pretty goals, but they also need more tough grinding. Talbot hasn't been himself these last few games and, with Kennedy injured, Cooke has been the only one providing a physical presence on offense.

The Penguins defense wasn't bad, especially when you consider all of the injuries they are facing.

The Penguins play again tonight, this time at home against the New York Islanders.


Anonymous said...

Im starting to think this team is lacking the toughness it had last year. Crosby needs to focus more on his teammates, then the refs.

Penguins Experience said...

I'm not sure if it's toughness so much as it's a lack of players who are willing to do the dirty work. Yesterday Kennedy and Godard were out of the line-up and Talbot seemed unwilling to mix it up. That leaves only Cooke.
People like Staal, Talbot and Dupuis need to cause trouble physically.

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