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Penguins insider: Who benefits most from break between games?

| Sunday, April 13, 2008

Burning question: Which club benefits most from two days between games?

Breakdown: The Penguins want to carry momentum from wins in Games 1 and 2 into Game 3 on Monday. The Senators hope the weekend provides enough time to regroup and dull the Penguins' enthusiasm.

PuckSpeak: "If you're playing well, you want to be right back into it the next day," defenseman Darryl Sydor said. "As long as you have the right focus on that second day off, there should be no disadvantage. It's a little early in the series to have a couple of days off, but it's nice to have."

Looking ahead: Sydor, a tested playoff veteran that has appeared in four Stanley Cup finals, said the most oft-overlooked aspect of the playoffs is the emotional toll it takes on players.

"It wears on you physically, but a lot of people don't know how it wears on you mentally," Sydor said. "That's why it was good a lot of the guys didn't come to the rink (Saturday). They'll be refreshed today."

Sydor did not dress for Games 1 and 2 and is unlikely to appear in Game 3. However, one point coach Michel Therrien will emphasize to his defensemen today at practice will be crease protection. Ottawa's best scoring chances this series, including each of its three goals in Game 2, were the result of its forwards winning battles with defensemen in front of goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury.

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