The Pittsburgh Penguins will face their toughest challenge since playing the Winnipeg Jets, how will they respond after the loss to the Ducks.
For the Pittsburgh Penguins, they currently see themselves right in the middle of their West Coast Trip, and facing one of the hardest weeks in probably the entire season, as they will play Vegas later this week as well. But for now, their concern turns to trying to stop the San Jose Sharks, who have one of the best records in the NHL.
They have the third most points of any team this season, and the Penguins will have to try and slow them down, as they have won their previous six contests. Statistically speaking, these teams are actually shockingly similar, as both teams – on average – score and get scored on the same amount of times, 3.6 and 2.9 respectively. Both teams also have the exact same number of short handed goals, and only a one goal difference in power play goals.
It will also be a matchup that’s fool of superstars on both sides. And that leads us to the big matchup for today’s game, how the dynamic duo of Brent Burns and Erik Karlsson will do against this powerful offense of the Penguins. The Pens will be going against one of the top defensive lines in the NHL, and it will be interesting how they handle them on both sides of the ice.
Obviously this is a huge game for many reasons, but possibly the biggest is that this game could be a huge turning point for this season. If the Penguins drop this one, they will face a back to back later that could also cause some issues. If things fell poorly, the Pens may leave the West with just a 1-4 record, something that they would definitely be disappointed with.
Expect the Pens to come out fast and furious in this one, as they will want to establish themselves early on in the game. Whether they will be able to maintain that intensity and pull out the victory… well we are just going to have to wait and see.