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Crosby confident Penguins match up better with Red Wings this year

The Penguins suffered back-to-back shutouts at the hands of the Red Wings in Games 1 and 2 of last year's final, 4-0 and 3-0. C Sidney Crosby recalled what part of the problem was on Thursday. "Just watching a little bit too much," he said. "I think we went in there, very similar to our first year in the playoffs, where we waited to see what it was going to be like. And by that time, it was too late." The Pens split their first two games at Ottawa in 2007 on the way to being eliminated from the first round in five games. They lost the Cup to Detroit last year in six games. "It's a lot different now, knowing what to expect, knowing our opponent a little more," Crosby said. "I don't think we played Detroit last year before the finals. There's a lot more familiarity with everything."

Line dancing

LW Ruslan Fedotenko (sick) didn't practice yesterday. He was replaced on the line with C Evgeni Malkin and RW Max Talbot by LW Pascal Dupuis . The rest of the Pens' lines stayed constant: Crosby, LW Chris Kunitz and RW Bill Guerin ; C Jordan Staal , LW Matt Cooke and RW Tyler Kennedy ; C Craig Adams , LW Petr Sykora and RW Miroslav Satan ; C Mike Zigomanis , LW Alex Goligoski and RW Eric Godard .

Battle of the titans

Penguins coach Dan Bylsma appreciates this year's final for the spectacle that is Penguins-Red Wings as well as for the opportunity it presents to win a Cup. "With the rise of our young players and our organization, Detroit being a fixture as a good team in the Western Conference, what happened last year happening again this year and just the history of it all, certainly two of the marquee franchises going toe to toe again in the finals is something we can all appreciate even while we're in the midst of it," Bylsma said.

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