I've tried and I've tried, but I can't find any further footage of Marc Andre Fleury working out. All I have to go by is the brief glimpse I got Saturday night when FSN showed Flower in a conditioning drill. By that token I'd say that he moved well through the drill, but the Authorities still insist that he hasn't made it through an entire practice. All I know is I couldn't make it through that one drill and I haven't had an 'undisclosed lower body injury' in years.
Sidney Crosby may be the single beastliest player in the League this last week. Second in the League in points (34) Third in goals (13) and third in assists (21). He's scored 5 goals in the last two games including his second career hat trick in Saturday's game against the New Jersey Debbils. The guy even manages to make an empty net goal look exciting.
In a purely unofficial stat he also leads the League in goals scored while sliding on body parts other than the skates. Is there any way that we could get someone to trip him for every shot? That could boost his totals right through the roof. A player like El Capitan is something that every hockey team wants one of. He's ultra-talented, he's personable, even tempered and actually seems to like the fans he's playing for. Any team that had just one of those would consider itself lucky. Picksburgh has more than one, the Flightless Wonders also have Evgeni Malkin. Geno is first in the League in scoring (39) first in the League in assists (29) and while his 10 goals make him 28th in the League he's only 3 behind his teammate for third place and has also scored a HT last week. He's a big, Russian hockey playing version of Jethro Bodine ( no insult to Geno, but imagine him in bibs and a straw hat.)and a player who likes da Burgh. It doesn't stop there. The Pens back-up goaltender is leading the League in goals against average (1.84) and is fourth in save percentage (.930). On the FPL side of the ledger there's Brooks Orpik who is second in the League in hits (87) and Rob Scuderi, who's 6th in the League in blocked shots (60) add this all up and what do you get? Let's go to the map. My big schedule on the wall is marked with Wins in orange ink (random choice, no color significance) and Losses and OTL in purple and it's saying I'm going to need a new orange Sharpie before long.(I'll buy a whole box, I don't care) The Pens went 9-2-1 for the month of November, making them 14-6-3 for the year. They're 5 points behind the Division/Conference leading Rangers with 4 less games, and they're missing their two best defensemen. I don't normally like stats, but once you get into them they're harder than quicksand to get out of. Someone throw me a rope so I can get out of here.
Non Stat Stuff: Ryan Whitney has completed his first full week of practices, but doesn't seem to want to promote wild speculation on his condition. (yeah, that whole 'undisclosed' thing doesn't invite speculation, does it?) He says his status "Doesn't change on a day-to-day basis. It's more week-to-week. Once you get a day off, usually it feels better the next day." And what about full-contact drills? "Hopefully, at the end of the road trip this week I'll be doing everything in practice." Speaking of 'undisclosed', Phillipe Boucher is day-to-day (seeing a pattern here?) with whatever injury he sustained in Friday's game.
Janne Pesonen has been sent back to the Baby Pens. (sorry Vince) I know some will disagree, but I think this is exactly the correct way to handle Janne with the current situation. His inexperience in the NHL needs to be balanced with the needs of the team. Sticking him in when they can gives him some familiarity with the League and the Team. If the situation ever comes up where they need him for an extended period of time it'll make his transition that much easier.
Further Finnish News: The Trib put out an article this morning about JP and his desire to remain in the Big League. Coach T likes what Golden Helmet is doing in the AHL, but hasn't' yet had the ice-time time to assess him in the NHL (but doesn't he assign ice-time?). Janne seems to have a hungry attitude about his chances. "I want to be here, and I want to get a place on the team." Pesonen said before the Devil game. "Playing in the NHL has been my dream since I was a kid. I definitely want to be a better player. I'm not happy with the way I am right now. This is the biggest challenge, and I'm looking forward to it." Molinari, over at PPG.com answers a Janne question over at Pens Q&A, and seems to think they ought to play JP or trade him. Easy there, Dave, it's his first season.
Also, because I think the thankfulness should never end, and I like swiping stuff from other sites... I have this from The Penguins Experience: