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Forums :: Blog World :: Ryan Wilson: Penguins draw favorable matchup and ready to ice best lineup of the year
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NJPensfan
Pittsburgh Penguins
Joined: 10.25.2006

May 11 @ 1:30 PM ET
With a Trotz team anything can happen, but the Isles and Pens are trending in two completely different directions right now and have been for a number of weeks. The second week of March had the Penguins in 5th place and the Islanders were 1st. The Isles were on an 8 game win streak and then lost Lee for the season and the bottom fell out. No matter how defensively stingy a team is, you still have to score to win.

There's no such thing as flipping a switch in the playoffs, and the Islanders are 3-5-2 in their last 10 heading in, and having a hard time scoring at all unless it's Barzal. They are barely averaging 2 goals a game since picking up Palmieri and Zajac. The Pens are 8-2 and are getting scoring from up and down the roster including the defense. Carter alone on the 3rd line has generated 3 times the output than Palmieri and Zajac combined.

Plus, they've proven this season they can beat the Trotz trap by eliminating East-West passing that that system feeds on, and by simply carrying the puck with speed through the neutral zone, so unless all of a sudden they forget how to do that, play pass happy pond-hockey again, and the Islanders also become a scoring machine overnight, then if the Penguins lose this series it will be more of an upset than 2019.
pens4life-66
Pittsburgh Penguins
Location: BC
Joined: 10.01.2013

May 11 @ 1:38 PM ET
"It works both ways Ryan. Even while acknowledging the Isles are the underdog in this series, trust me, Isles and their fans would much rather play the Penguins than the Capitals."

Is that why they pulled the goalie in a tie game last night?

- burgh4life87


Haha exactly. I was watching it and they did everything they could to win that game in regulation to have a chance to ply the caps.
MattStrat
Pittsburgh Penguins
Location: St. John's, NF
Joined: 12.12.2014

May 11 @ 1:43 PM ET
With a Trotz team anything can happen, but the Isles and Pens are trending in two completely different directions right now and have been for a number of weeks. The second week of March had the Penguins in 5th place and the Islanders were 1st. The Isles were on an 8 game win streak and then lost Lee for the season and the bottom fell out. No matter how defensively stingy a team is, you still have to score to win.

There's no such thing as flipping a switch in the playoffs, and the Islanders are 3-5-2 in their last 10 heading in, and having a hard time scoring at all unless it's Barzal. They are barely averaging 2 goals a game since picking up Palmieri and Zajac. The Pens are 8-2 and are getting scoring from up and down the roster including the defense. Carter alone on the 3rd line has generated 3 times the output than Palmieri and Zajac combined.

Plus, they've proven this season they can beat the Trotz trap by eliminating East-West passing that that system feeds on, and by simply carrying the puck with speed through the neutral zone, so unless all of a sudden they forget how to do that, play pass happy pond-hockey again, and the Islanders also become a scoring machine overnight, then if the Penguins lose this series it will be more of an upset than 2019.

- NJPensfan


Settle down with the confidence hahah....I have to try and simmer this kind of post a bit...

What was the Isles last 10 games of schedule like? Pens played the Sabres 2 times and Devils 3 in the last 10. Philly 2 times as well, though I think Philly is much better than the other two teams and always give their all vs Pens, still not a playoff team though.
Bobd62
New York Rangers
Location: Hauppauge, NY
Joined: 11.14.2015

May 11 @ 2:03 PM ET
Wide gap in favor of the isles in goal. Just sayin
PghPens668771
Pittsburgh Penguins
Joined: 11.26.2013

May 11 @ 2:14 PM ET
I didn’t really think about the Bruins Caps besting the living poop out of each other. That is a good thing about drawing the Islanders. Hopefully that series goes 7 violent games.
- Grinder47


Definitely. I am guessing there is lots of betting on who will take the first cheapshot - Wilson or Marchand? Marchand has been a bit tame as of late but the goonery will come out of him if Wilson draws first blood.
Cptmjl
New York Islanders
Joined: 11.05.2011

May 11 @ 2:16 PM ET
"It works both ways Ryan. Even while acknowledging the Isles are the underdog in this series, trust me, Isles and their fans would much rather play the Penguins than the Capitals."

Is that why they pulled the goalie in a tie game last night?

- burgh4life87

They were also playing for home ice in the second round.
Cptmjl
New York Islanders
Joined: 11.05.2011

May 11 @ 2:17 PM ET
IMO the major weakness for the Pens this year has been keeping bodies away from their goalies. They've been much better about this, but if I'm the Isles my game-plan is to get in Jarry's face as much as possible. That IMO is how the Pens would lose this series.

If the Pens can keep clear the crease clear I think it's theirs to lose.

- Rinosaur

You won’t have any issue with that now that Lee is out. He’s the only player we have/had with a net presence.
PghPens668771
Pittsburgh Penguins
Joined: 11.26.2013

May 11 @ 2:19 PM ET
It works both ways Ryan. Even while acknowledging the Isles are the underdog in this series, trust me, Isles and their fans would much rather play the Penguins than the Capitals.
- mrniftee


The matchups can be a funny thing. I think the ideal matchup for the Pens would have been the Capitals. There is of course the size and violence factor but beyond that they have weak goalies and questionable defense. The Pens' offense could have mercilessly exploited these goalies in a playoff series. The Isles don't have the firepower for this, aside from Barzal. The worst matchup for the Pens would have been the Bruins, who have the best goalie of the three other teams and lack any glaring weaknesses. Then of course is the fact that until last month the Pens hadn't won in Boston in eight years.
NJPensfan
Pittsburgh Penguins
Joined: 10.25.2006

May 11 @ 2:25 PM ET
Settle down with the confidence hahah....I have to try and simmer this kind of post a bit...

What was the Isles last 10 games of schedule like? Pens played the Sabres 2 times and Devils 3 in the last 10. Philly 2 times as well, though I think Philly is much better than the other two teams and always give their all vs Pens, still not a playoff team though.

- MattStrat


Yeah, I try not to get too confident, as anything can happen and has. Just felt like feeding the trolls.

I know they lost to the Caps three times in row (two at home), twice in row to Buffalo and once to NJ before losing the last game to the Bruins. The only teams they beat were the Rangers and Devils. Not very inspiring.
NJPensfan
Pittsburgh Penguins
Joined: 10.25.2006

May 11 @ 2:37 PM ET
The matchups can be a funny thing. I think the ideal matchup for the Pens would have been the Capitals.
- PghPens668771


That's a matchup you take later if possible no matter how preferred. That way you don't expend the energy a series like that will take going into the the next round. Plus, there was no way the standings would have shaken out that way unless the Pens tanked to get the 3 seed. Everyone gets mad when the Caps and Pens (Sid versus Ovie) isn't a division final anyway.

If the Pens get by the Isles, they will get a team in Washington or Boston that is less for wear, and if it's Boston, that's all they can hope for.
MisterBrown
Toronto Maple Leafs
Joined: 08.10.2020

May 11 @ 3:04 PM ET
The 🐧🐧🐧 are going to be a tough out.

This is their best lineup in years.
Rinosaur
Pittsburgh Penguins
Location: Somewhere, NJ
Joined: 01.21.2016

May 11 @ 3:29 PM ET
You won’t have any issue with that now that Lee is out. He’s the only player we have/had with a net presence.
- Cptmjl


He really is a major loss. He's definitely one of the most underrated players in the league.
Cptmjl
New York Islanders
Joined: 11.05.2011

May 11 @ 3:47 PM ET
He really is a major loss. He's definitely one of the most underrated players in the league.
- Rinosaur

Huge loss. Honestly much more impactful then I thought it would be. The islanders played pretty well without him in spurts until the trade deadline but we haven’t played consistently good since we acquired Palmieri and Zajac. Trotz hasn’t been able to find any consistency in the line up since their additions. If Leo Komarov is on your first line your team is not in a good situation imo. I still say we turn it on for the playoffs but that’s based on nothing
Rinosaur
Pittsburgh Penguins
Location: Somewhere, NJ
Joined: 01.21.2016

May 11 @ 4:31 PM ET
Huge loss. Honestly much more impactful then I thought it would be. The islanders played pretty well without him in spurts until the trade deadline but we haven’t played consistently good since we acquired Palmieri and Zajac. Trotz hasn’t been able to find any consistency in the line up since their additions. If Leo Komarov is on your first line your team is not in a good situation imo. I still say we turn it on for the playoffs but that’s based on nothing
- Cptmjl


LOL wow. I haven't watched you guys lately. I didn't even realize Komarov was still in the league hahah
Victoro311
Pittsburgh Penguins
Location: Washington, DC
Joined: 06.17.2014

May 11 @ 4:35 PM ET
It works both ways Ryan. Even while acknowledging the Isles are the underdog in this series, trust me, Isles and their fans would much rather play the Penguins than the Capitals.
- mrniftee

Funny. I’d rather play the Caps than you guys. They look and play old and they don’t have Trotz.
Rinosaur
Pittsburgh Penguins
Location: Somewhere, NJ
Joined: 01.21.2016

May 11 @ 4:36 PM ET
Funny. I’d rather play the Caps than you guys. They look and play old and they don’t have Trotz.
- Victoro311


Actually, as you get older you tend to get the trotz.
j.boyd919
Pittsburgh Penguins
Location: Tampa, FL
Joined: 06.14.2011

May 11 @ 4:38 PM ET
Funny. I’d rather play the Caps than you guys. They look and play old and they don’t have Trotz.
- Victoro311


I’d rather play the Caps for the pure entertainment aspect lol pens vs caps are always the best series IMO
Rinosaur
Pittsburgh Penguins
Location: Somewhere, NJ
Joined: 01.21.2016

May 11 @ 4:40 PM ET
I’d rather play the Caps for the pure entertainment aspect lol pens vs caps are always the best series IMO
- j.boyd919


That's true, but I don't know that any series will have more fireworks than pitting Wilson vs. Marchand. This is the first time they've played each other in a playoff series, right? I don't mean in history, but I mean with Marchand and Wilson.
Cptmjl
New York Islanders
Joined: 11.05.2011

May 11 @ 4:42 PM ET
LOL wow. I haven't watched you guys lately. I didn't even realize Komarov was still in the league hahah
- Rinosaur

I wish he weren’t.
j.boyd919
Pittsburgh Penguins
Location: Tampa, FL
Joined: 06.14.2011

May 11 @ 4:45 PM ET
That's true, but I don't know that any series will have more fireworks than pitting Wilson vs. Marchand. This is the first time they've played each other in a playoff series, right? I don't mean in history, but I mean with Marchand and Wilson.
- Rinosaur


I don’t really think those two are going to have an impact on each other. Marchand is a little rat. He isn’t going to pull any poop against an Ogre like Wilson. Wilson has like 40 lbs on him lol Wilson would just rag doll him like he did Breadman lol
Rinosaur
Pittsburgh Penguins
Location: Somewhere, NJ
Joined: 01.21.2016

May 11 @ 4:49 PM ET
I don’t really think those two are going to have an impact on each other. Marchand is a little rat. He isn’t going to pull any poop against an Ogre like Wilson. Wilson has like 40 lbs on him lol Wilson would just rag doll him like he did Breadman lol
- j.boyd919


I misspoke. I don't specifically mean them head to head, but the chaos that they will create will keep feeding back and forth to their respective teams, and probably escalate things on the regular.
PghPens668771
Pittsburgh Penguins
Joined: 11.26.2013

May 11 @ 5:02 PM ET
I misspoke. I don't specifically mean them head to head, but the chaos that they will create will keep feeding back and forth to their respective teams, and probably escalate things on the regular.
- Rinosaur


Yeah, I can just see Wilson taking out McAvoy with a dirty blindside hit to the head and not getting called for it. Just imagine what will be going through Marchand's head at the moment, plotting how he is going to do the same to Backstrom. He certainly won't go after Wilson.

Another interesting thing is that of the eight teams in our current division these two tend to get the most favorable officiating. It will be interesting to see who the refs favor. We all know that they do not call the game as they see it and Tim Peel confirmed that for us this year.
j.boyd919
Pittsburgh Penguins
Location: Tampa, FL
Joined: 06.14.2011

May 11 @ 5:07 PM ET
Yeah, I can just see Wilson taking out McAvoy with a dirty blindside hit to the head and not getting called for it. Just imagine what will be going through Marchand's head at the moment, plotting how he is going to do the same to Backstrom. He certainly won't go after Wilson.

Another interesting thing is that of the eight teams in our current division these two tend to get the most favorable officiating. It will be interesting to see who the refs favor. We all know that they do not call the game as they see it and Tim Peel confirmed that for us this year.

- PghPens668771


By what metrics?
668710
Pittsburgh Penguins
Location: "Give him a chance" -Barnaby36, PA
Joined: 06.25.2011

May 11 @ 5:55 PM ET
By what metrics?
- j.boyd919

You know, Z÷Y+X, duh.
MattStrat
Pittsburgh Penguins
Location: St. John's, NF
Joined: 12.12.2014

May 11 @ 6:06 PM ET
You know, Z÷Y+X, duh.
- 668710


Hahaha
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