Pittsburgh Penguins: Top 3 reasons not to sleep on the Canadiens

Sidney Crosby #87 of the Pittsburgh Penguins. (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)
Sidney Crosby #87 of the Pittsburgh Penguins. (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images) /

The Pittsburgh Penguins will be playing the Montreal Canadiens, soon, in the playoffs, that much is true. Also, playoff matches are never as easy as they look.

As the Pittsburgh Penguins prepare for battle against the Canadiens in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, it is hard to see why they won’t win easily. On paper, they are just better, faster, and finally, all healthy. However, the playoffs aren’t easy and can always be an unpredictable beast.

If your memory is filled with Penguin’s knowledge instead of useful life knowledge, then you won’t have to try hard to remember (or forget) that last time these two faced each other in the playoffs. Keeping that in mind, let’s look at a few reasons not to sleep on the Montreal Canadiens in round one.

The Away Battle

Just about the only way the Canadiens top the Penguins is in away matchups. Now, before you get too carried away, it’s only one spot. The Canadiens sit with the 16th best record while the Pens are 17th. However, that’s only surface-level compared to when you look at the power play. The Habs are near the top of the league in that regard.

Pittsburgh Penguins: Top 3 reasons not to sleep on the Canadiens

It is still unknown as to where these matchups are going to be played, but we are 100% certain that both sides will be playing away from home—moving on from “the where” the next issue to remain robust on for the Pens will be the length of the series.

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The Best of a Shorter Series

Usually, when it comes to the best of seven series, the better team eventually comes out on top. For the Penguins in a best of five series, however, that gets tricky. One slip up, one missed play or one loss in concentration, and the best of five series can be taken over. With the new playoff format, this new series concept will undoubtedly be a battle for the Penguins to watch out for.

The Canadiens have the possibility of taking a game quickly, and if that happens, it’ll be no holds bar going forward. Pittsburgh will need to stay sharp and do what they can do. As much as this can be a hindrance, this can also be a benefit; they just need to take advantage of it in the right way.

We Don’t Fear Carey Price… Right?

The Montreal Canadiens netminder, Carey Price, has been a staple in that role for quite some time now, and for a good reason. Vezina and Hart trophies, as well as the label of “best in the world,” has been just a few of his credentials. After being the victim of bad luck in 2015/16, he has taken a step back, but don’t let that fool you during playoff time.

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Price has a record of 13-14-5 when facing the Pittsburgh Penguins, so no sweat there, right? Not really, but in the playoffs, Price has been a different beast. In all actuality, these three reasons not to fall asleep can impact both sides. Short rounds, away or neutral battles, and putting all the weight on a keeper, will undoubtedly affect each team. Now, we wait and see what happens.