The real games haven’t started yet, but for Conor Sheary and the Pittsburgh Penguins, everything is seemingly heading in the perfect direction; and to many others surprise.
The idea of the Pittsburgh Penguins playing in a real, meaningful matchup is an exhilarating prospect. For Conor Sheary, however, it means that the opposition will be trying to smash him into the glass or use his smaller stature to his disadvantage. Still, for now, he is doing everything exactly the way Mike Sullivan would want him to.
Over the past few intra-squad scrimmages, Sheary has held on to the puck and has been quick to get into the corners and work from there. All of these attributes have and will continue to impact Sidney Crosby, or whoever is playing in his stead. Simply put, when Sheary holds onto the puck, it makes the defense focus on him, leaving his other linemates open.
Back in February, when GM Jim Rutherford reacquired Sheary fro Buffalo, he hoped that he could bring back the magic that came from a few years ago. Even though his season was cut short due to COVID-19, Sheary has been showing his worth during phase-3 training camp.
Conor Sheary has been a nice surprise for the Pittsburgh Penguins.
The turn around of Sheary since the NHL layoff has been vital to the Penguin’s progression. Pittsburgh has all three forwards rolling on Geno’s Line and the newly created McPatty’s Line, but the question mark has been on how the 1st line would perform.
With Sid either being in or out, that does make a difference. However, the play of Sheary on the right side is what has been making the main variation in play. At his size, he’s not built for grinding, even though he tries. No, his game is setting up his line and keeping the puck protected. Those things are what he has done, and it has been a surprising factor leading up to the playoffs.