Hockey News writer says Penguins will miss playoffs in 2020. Hear why. |
Breakfast With Benz

Hockey News writer says Penguins will miss playoffs in 2020. Hear why.

Tim Benz
Chaz Palla
Penguins’ goalie Matt Murray skates back into the net as the Islanders celebrate a score during the Stanley Cup Playoffs against the New York Islanders on Sunday, April 14, 2019 at PPG Paints Arena.

The Penguins missing the playoffs in 2020? Pfft! That’s not going to happen. I mean, they haven’t missed out since 2006.

Then again, the Penguins made the playoffs by only four points in 2019.

And it took until Game 81 to clinch a berth.

And they couldn’t win a playoff game.

And they lost Phil Kessel, Olli Maatta and Matt Cullen.

And they have have salary-cap issues.

So maybe the idea of them missing the playoffs isn’t so crazy, after all.

That’s what Matt Larkin of The Hockey News is considering. Annually, he posts a “three in, three out” column. In other words, he lists three playoff teams from the previous season who will miss the playoffs in the upcoming year. And he lists three organizations who missed out last year that will scramble back into the bracket next spring.

Larkin has the Penguins as one of the franchises out before the postseason begins this season, along with the Jets and Blue Jackets.

Even worse, he has the Flyers as one of the teams getting in after missing out a year ago. A lot of Larkin’s rationale is connected to watching Chicago flame out after seeing a lot of postseason success in preceding years. He sees similarities in Pittsburgh.

Larkin also doesn’t seem sold that the Penguins’ additions will offset their losses from the roster. And he thinks the rest of the Metropolitan Division is getting better while the Penguins are regressing — or staying stagnant, at best.

Is he right? Take a listen. See if you buy what he is selling.

Not that you’d want to buy it. But just see if makes more sense once he explains.

LISTEN: The Hockey News’ Matt Larkin on Penguins’ playoff chances

Tim Benz is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tim at [email protected] or via Twitter. All tweets could be reposted. All emails are subject to publication unless specified otherwise.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using 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.