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Penguins notebook: Center Sutter eager to produce points

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By Josh Yohe
Sunday, June 2, 2013, 6:48 p.m.

Sutter eager to produce

Center Brandon Sutter knows it is time to produce.

The Boston Bruins are among hockey's finest defensive teams, and will use considerable energy to slow down the Penguins' powerful top two lines.

If Boston is successful at slowing down the forward units led by centers Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, it will behoove Sutter's third line to produce.

“Our line can't just play defense,” Sutter said. “We need to score goals. We know it.”

Sutter has gone seven games without a point and has only mustered one goal and one assist in 12 playoff games. He has recorded only 21 shots and 12 hits in those games while winning 50 percent of his faceoffs.

He was far more productive during the regular season. In his first 48 games after being traded from the Carolina Hurricanes, Sutter scored 11 goals.

Left wing Matt Cooke is a plus-5 this postseason and has delivered 49 hits. However, he is without a goal in 12 games.

Right wing Tyler Kennedy, back on the third line after a forgettable regular season, has scored twice in the playoffs but just once in his past seven games.

Sutter believes the production will come soon from him and the third line.

“The big thing is that we are getting some more chances,” he said. “I'd be more worried if we weren't creating any chances, but we have been.”

Practice optional

The Penguins held an optional practice Sunday at Consol Energy Center. Most players who participated in Game 1 against Boston did not participate. The exceptions were goalie Tomas Vokoun, Cooke and right wing Craig Adams.

— Josh Yohe

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