Pittsburgh Penguins: 5 Reasons the Pens Will Win the Stanley Cup in 2016

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Nov 1, 2014; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Olli Maatta (3) skates through center ice with the puck against the Buffalo Sabres during the second period at the CONSOL Energy Center. The Penguins won 5-0. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

1. Health

I firmly believe that the Pittsburgh Penguins were as capable as any other Eastern Conference team in these playoffs without the devastating injuries they suffered. The issue though, considering the trend over the last five years, it seems as if they’ll never be healthy.

I have no complaints about how Taylor Chorney and Brian Dumoulin filled in against the New York Rangers. But, Rob Scuderi was terrible and his age showed when he was forced into top-four minutes. The same goes for Ben Lovejoy, as he was exposed multiple times in very important situations throughout that series.

When you lose talented players like Letang, Maatta, and Ehrhoff you suffer. I don’t need to post a fancy chart or line graph to prove that. Could you imagine the Rangers without Staal, Girardi, and Yandle?

While we spend a lot of time analyzing the details of the game and player’s performances, if you can’t stay healthy you can’t win. If the Pittsburgh Penguins are able to boast a full lineup in next season’s playoffs, they’ll have just as good of an opportunity to hoist the Stanley Cup as anyone else.

Next: Young, Cheap D Corps is Exactly What the Pens Need

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