Penguins notebook: Pens hungry to bury Flyers
Seeing the Flyers on their schedule is enough to motivate the Penguins.
Having a chance to prematurely end the Flyers season?
“You know,” left wing Tanner Glass said, “that sounds like fun to me.”
It's pretty plausible, too.
The Flyers are currently clinging to the final spot in the Eastern Conference playoff race, two points better than New Jersey and Detroit. Of Philadelphia's final 17 games, three are against the Penguins.
And the Penguins know it.
“I think we really put a dent in Washington's playoff hopes earlier this week,” said defenseman Brooks Orpik, referring to the Penguins' other big rival.
“Philly's clinging on to the eighth spot right now. We could really put a dent in their chances, too, especially with how Columbus and Detroit are playing.”
Putting a dent in the Flyers' chances is something of interest to the Penguins.
“If we can beat Philly, hopefully we can diminish their chances of getting into the playoffs,” Orpik said. “I'm sure everyone would be happy about that.”
The Penguins, according to Orpik, made the President's Trophy a goal before the season. They remain only three points behind Anaheim in San Jose for the league's finest record.
“It's nice to have different things motivating you this time of year,” Glass said. “We haven't really had much to play for in a while.”
The Stanley Cup is the ultimate goal, and preventing the Flyers from playing for it certainly has the Penguins intrigued.
“No doubt about it,” Glass said. “It's always fun when we get together with them. We'll be ready.”
• Left wing Jussi Jokinen will replace James Neal on the Penguins' top power-play unit. Jokinen, who has played with that group frequently this season because of Neal's absences, typically excels playing in the high slot on the power play. “I really like that spot,” he said. “It lets you use your hockey sense and find the open person.”
• While Neal isn't available this weekend against the Flyers, it appears left wing Chris Kunitz will play. Kunitz was injured against the Capitals on Tuesday when his leg slammed into the goal post. He missed practice Thursday but skated with his teammates Friday and showed no signs of trouble.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.