ShareThis Page
Penguins

New Penguins defenseman Marcus Pettersson has solid debut

Jonathan Bombulie
| Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2018, 11:03 p.m.
Defenseman Marcus Pettersson makes his Penguins debut against the Avalanche in the second period Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2018 at PPG Paints Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Defenseman Marcus Pettersson makes his Penguins debut against the Avalanche in the second period Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2018 at PPG Paints Arena.

When it comes to Swedes who made the biggest impact in a 6-3 Pittsburgh Penguins victory over the Colorado Avalanche on Tuesday night, newly acquired defenseman Marcus Pettersson finished a distant second.

But even though he didn’t match the flashy heroics of countryman Patric Hornqvist’s hat tricks, he received plaudits for his Penguins debut all the same.

Playing primarily on the third defense pair with Jack Johnson, Pettersson was a plus-1 in about 14 minutes of ice time. The Penguins were outshot 21-12 while he was on the ice, but the Avalanche didn’t score during that time.

“We really liked his game,” coach Mike Sullivan said. “I thought his gaps were really good. He’s got a long reach. He’s a mobile guy for a guy as big as he is. He plays hard in the battle areas. He’s hard to play against. We really like that aspect of his game. I think he can pass the puck. He made some really good first passes for us. We really liked what we saw with Marcus.”

Pettersson’s arrival, which came in a trade with Anaheim for Daniel Sprong on Monday, gives the Penguins eight healthy, NHL-caliber defensemen, six of whom are left-handed.

This will create a lineup challenge for Sullivan moving forward. Three of lefties — Johnson, Jamie Oleksiak and Juuso Riikola — are comfortable on the right side. On Tuesday night, Riikola was the healthy scratch.

“We’ve got to try to explore those combinations a little bit and figure out what we think is the best for our team,” Sullivan said. “We just thought we’d go with this tonight and see how it went.”

Follow the Pittsburgh Penguins all season long.

Jonathan Bombulie is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jonathan at jbombulie@tribweb.com or via Twitter @BombulieTrib.

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.

click me