Tuesday, May 5, 2009

DOWN TWO-NIL, DO PENS HAVE A COMEBACK IN THEM? HERE"S RAY SHERO'S TOP TEN LIST OF SUGGESTIONS


Being down two games to none is not the way you want to start off a playoff series. Even the most casual of hockey fans knows that. But now that the Pens have lost two to the "Ovies", what's it going to take to reignite the home fires?

We've compiled this top ten list for Ray Shero that should be just what the doctor ordered. In fact, even getting seven or eight of these should be enough to guarantee a win in game three and beyond. But talking about it is one thing, doing it is something else!

1) A good jolt of Pittsburgh. This shouldn't be a problem. A loud raucous crowd will be great to get the adrenaline going again for the Pens, but caution, that adrenaline burst is only good for about ten minutes. After that, if we haven't scored, then the home team starts to press and the visiting team feeds off the quiet it's created.



ABOVE: The Pittsburgh crowd has to be on top of its' game, not like the last Philadelphia game where the crowd became invisible.


2) Score the first two goals. I'm being greedy here. Sure the first goal is tremendously important, but what you may have already noticed is that the Pens scored first in the last two games and lost both. Going up two at home would really put the pressure on Washington's rookie goaltender Simeon Varlamov.


3) Shake up said goaltender by rattling him. This can be accomplished by running into him, peppering him with shots, keeping the pressure in his end, screening him. All of these will help.

4) Have Sid get out his big boot and start kicking some butts in that locker room. There are more than a few guys who are performing miserably in this series. It's high time that Sidney closed the door and started getting these people "motivated". What are they waiting for anyway?


ABOVE: Okay puck bunnies, here's some eye candy, but Sid will have to bring more than just his good looks to the locker room.

5) Have Gilles Meloche have a little talk with Marc Andre. He's giving up way too many rebounds and more often than not, that's when he's getting beaten. When M.A.F. was hurt last year, do you remember how seldom Ty Conklin allowed a rebound ? He might not have had the pure quickness that Fleury has, but he knew how to corral the puck.


6) Petr Sykora has to be injured. He is playing at a mere shadow of his former self. The best hockey that Evgeni Malkin played was three games ago against Philadelphia when Miro Satan was on his line. This team needs Malkin scoring and can't expect Sid to score a hat trick every night. What about the rest of this team, why are they suddenly all so offensively inept? Come on people!


7) Either fix this power play quickly or prepare to start your golf league. It's hard to imagine a team that has this much offensive talent having so much trouble on the power play. There's no excuse for it and these guys should be ashamed of their performance. When the Pens failed to score five on three last night, I knew that game was lost. Conversely, Washington scored four seconds into the Malkin penalty in the third period.

8) Start laying some lumber, especially on Ovechkin. In fact, it might not be a bad idea to keep Jordan Staal plastered all over him. Stop him and the rest of this team doesn't look unbeatable at all.
ABOVE: We'll take two Tyler Kennedys, six Brooks Orpiks, four Jeff Kunitz, five Hal Gills...


9) Rename Dan Bylsma again as "interim" coach. The team did much better with him having the "interim" moniker. Then activate him and put him on Crosby's line if Kunitz gets suspended.


10) Put Mario on the active roster. If he's not available see if you can get Austin.


Mario:


Good


Dresser,


Even


Better


Player!