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Penguins

Penguins insider: Tone set?

| Thursday, April 10, 2008

Burning question: Does Game 1 set the tone for a series?

Breakdown: Teams that won Game 1 claimed 13-of-15 series in the 2007 Stanley Cup playoffs, including all eight in the opening round.

He said it: "You have to win games, it's as simple as that," forward Pascal Dupuis said. "The first one is important, but so is the second, third and fourth. Losing Game 1 doesn't doom you, but it can set the tone."

Looking ahead: Defenseman Brooks Orpik believes home-ice advantage is as much about practice-day routine as playing in front of supportive fans.

"Last year in Ottawa there was nothing to do," Orpik said. "At this point in the season, you want to get away and clear your mind. That is just as beneficial as anything, and it's easier to find those places to get away at home."

The Penguins will not travel to Ottawa for Game 3 until after a late-morning practice Sunday - giving them a full week in Pittsburgh before arriving in Canada, where intense media focus will create what right wing Marian Hossa calls "the playoff bubble."

"I don't know if it ever gets normal in the playoffs," Orpik said. "But it's definitely closer to normal when you're home."

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