Shelly Anderson's Penguins chat transcript: 04.14.14

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Comment From Joey Pucks

 Do you think Bylsma will have a quick hook on Fleury if he struggles mightily, or does the fact that the guy behind him is a green rookie make that less likely? Arguably they don't get out of the first round last year without going to Vokoun.

2:30
 
Shelly Anderson: 
I don’t get any sense that the Penguins – coaches or players – are worried that Marc-Andre Fleury will falter any more than they are worried that Sidney Crosby or Chris Kunitz or James Neal will. For what it’s worth, I share that confidence in Fleury. If there should be a game where he gets pulled, Jeff Zatkoff has proven a capable backup goalie and the Penguins would not likely have any qualms about putting him in in relief. I would guess Fleury would start the subsequent game. That strategy worked out OK in the 2009 Cup final.
2:30
 
Comment From Ross 
Did I miss the announcement about Marcel Goc? He hasnt been mentioned in practices lately. Is he out for the season? Thanks!
2:31
 
Shelly Anderson
Goc took a nasty foot-first spill into the end boards. He’s not expected to be ready for the start of the playoffs, although he could be ready perhaps during the first round. He has not resumed skating, as far as I can tell. As of last week he was wearing an orthopedic boot.
2:31
 
Comment From Ross 
With Geno and Vitale's status unknown, who do you see as the odd wingers out in round one? They have called up a lot of people lately but some guys like Gibbons and Megna have shown, at least to me, to be productive. Thanks!
2:32
 
Shelly Anderson: 
The team seems to really like Brian Gibbons and Jayson Megna, two undrafted players. The Penguins have looked a lot of combinations over the past several games. Others in the mix for playing time on the bottom six in the playoffs could be Taylor Pyatt, Harry Zolnierczyk, Chuck Kobasew and, if he is able to return soon from a foot injury, Chris Conner. Not sure who the odd men out will be, and we could see some changes during the course of the first round -- just like we have all season.
2:32
 
Comment From pghgolfgirl 
I liked Adam Payerl's game during the brief time he was up from WBS - seemed physical yet smart. Any chance he'll be called up for the playoffs? Also, how worried should we be about MAF's shaky game on Saturday? Omen? (I hope not as I'm a huge MAF fan).
2:33
 
Shelly Anderson: 
Adam Payerl has NHL size, but not NHL experience. It’s not out of the question that the Penguins could summon him, but as of right now there are others ahead of him. He's someone to keep an eye on for the future.
As for Fleury, it’s doubtful one game, even late in the season, will affect his play in the postseason. For the record, though, I would have done the opposite of what Dan Bylsma did, starting Zatkoff against the Flyers and Fleury against Ottawa.
2:33
 
Comment From M in Morgantown 
Love the chat, Shell. Why has Engo been a frequent healthy scratch of late? R &R prep for the playoffs? Chances he'll roll as a fourth line fixture?
2:34
 
Shelly Anderson: 
Deryk Engelland wasn’t being rested; he just fell down the depth chart once the Penguins finally got their top nine defensemen healthy (or relatively so). Engelland might be in the mix for a spot on the fourth line, but that would seem like an outside shot. While he did an admirable job on the wing, that’s still a huge transition, and these are the playoffs.
2:34
 
Comment From The Chief 
Shelly, hope all is well. Now that he has played a month, your thoughts on Beau Bennett? I just don't see him on the Crosby/Kunitz line at this point in his career. Stempniak is an obviously better choice as the chase for Lord Stanley's Cup begins.
2:35
 
Shelly Anderson: 
It’s too bad Beau Bennett didn’t get more time to establish himself this season. However, while there hasn’t been a post-regular-season practice to judge from, it looks as if Bennett is penciled in on the top line, with Lee Stempniak skating on Brandon Sutter’s line. Stempniak had some quick chemistry with Sidney Crosby and Chris Kunitz. Bennett has more flash. Stempniak has a hockey savvy. No wrong answer there.
2:36
 
Comment From Guest 
Any word on Malkin, goc, And the other injured pens and their game status for Wednesday.
2:36
 
Shelly Anderson: 
The Penguins were off today, so there was no way to gauge or ask about the status of any players. Evgeni Malkin would seem to be close, although that doesn’t mean he’ll be ready for the opener Wednesday. Chris Conner and Joe Vitale also seem to be close and could be ready for Wednesday. Marcel Goc would seem to be a little further out. Incredibly in this injury-riddled season, other than Pascal Dupuis, who is out for months yet after knee surgery, that’s the extent of the injury report. Not a bad time to get healthy.
2:37
 
Comment From Toby 
With a healthy Malkin the top three lines are set (14-87-19, 36-71-18, 15-16-22). Who starts on the 4th line for Game One versus CBJ?
2:40
 
Shelly Anderson: 
Again, there was no practice today to see what the line combinations look like. Taking a stab at the fourth line is tough because there are so many choices. Craig Adams is a fixture. Joe Vitale's status plays into the decision. After that, take your pick: Jayson Megna, Brian Gibbons, Harry Zolnierczyk, Taylor Pyatt, Chris Conner if he's healthy. I'd go with Vitale if he's ready and either Gibbons or Megna.
2:40
 
Comment From Regis 
Lots of tickets still available, as Penguins fans don't seem enthusiastic about this year's team. Do you think this - the threat of waning fan interest - will send a louder signal to the team than any win or loss?
2:41
 
Shelly Anderson: 
The Penguins do seem to be pushing ticket sales. I believe there were only about 2,000 tickets per game available after the season-ticket holders allotment, and I would imagine anything not sold beforehand will get snatched up by student rush buyers. I'd be shocked if the games aren't sold out.
2:41
 
Comment From Claude 
That overtime goal that Fleury gave up was really bad. Do you think he was told to blow the game to ensure the Penguins wouldn't have to play Philly in the first round?
2:43
 
Shelly Anderson: 
It was a soft goal, but no way, no how was the game thrown. Not by the team collectively or by Fleury. Just isn't in their makeup. Besides, if the Penguins beat Columbus, they face the winner of the Philadelphia-New York Rangers series, so they could yet met the Flyers this postseason.
2:43
 
Comment From Brad Fitz 
I fear I already know the answer to this but...is there an outside chance Dupuis would be available deep into the playoffs?
2:45
 
Shelly Anderson: 
Duper is a Super Trooper, but, no, that doesn't seem possible. I believe he had ACL surgery in February. Four months is just not enough time to safely come back from that to a contact sport. Too bad; he adds a lot on and off the ice.
2:45
 
Comment From Beauregard 
Will they practice ice hockey before the playoffs?
2:47
 
Shelly Anderson: 
The vitriol aimed at the Penguins days off is confounding. The coaches certainly aren't off; they are game-planning and brainstorming. The teams played five times this season and are familiar with one another. They will have a practice day Tuesday plus a morning skate and all the regular video sessions and meetings. It's pretty important that they are fresh physically.
2:47
 
Comment From Variable 
So Dan said the bottom 6 isn't set in stone, does that mean Adams and Glass don't have guaranteed spots? Yes, No, lol or snort?
2:48
 
Shelly Anderson: 
Judging from what we've seen all season, I don't see Craig Adams or Tanner Glass coming out of the lineup as long as they are healthy.
2:48
 
Comment From Sherry 
What is your opinion on the glow puck? Sometimes it can be difficult to watch the game, and I really think the glow puck would really help.
2:50
 
Shelly Anderson: 
The old Fox network viewing aid? It might help some follow the puck. I understand that it can be difficult to see plays develop on TV. Watching in person is a big advantage there. I doubt we'll see the glow puck come back anytime soon. Sorry.
2:50
 
Comment From Dylan 
Bortuzzo has the type of game that you need from Dmen during the playoffs and should be in the lineup. But if he plays who sits?
2:52
 
Shelly Anderson: 
Good question. I'm not sure Robert Bortuzzo will play, at least to start off. After a season of so many injuries, we're finally seeing the team's depth on defense. Bortuzzo is a lot more than just a big body, but I'm not sure who he would displace.
2:52
 
Comment From pghgolfgirl 
Has Olli Maatta started growing his playoff beard yet? I suspect that could take awhile. Thoughts on his rest period? I thought it benefitted him immensely. Can see a definite improvement in his play.
2:53
 
Shelly Anderson: 
Fortunately for the Penguins, Olli Maatta's hockey skills are infinitely better than his playoff-beard skills. He did seem to benefit the couple of times he was rested during the season, and he's got the poise-beyond-his-years to handle his first NHL playoff experience.
2:53
 
Comment From Razzle 
Why do you pretend people care about Conner?
2:54
 
Shelly Anderson: 
Uh, the coaching staff likes Chris Conner. What's to pretend about that?
2:54
 
Comment From Dylan 
how does one go about getting tickets through the student rush program?
2:55
 
Shelly Anderson: 
Not sure of the details. You have to be a high school or college student, I believe, and I think there is a way to sign up for text messages. Check with the Penguins website.
2:56
 
Comment From Mack 
I was curious about the bottom 6. How could they not be set in stone with all the injuries they've had? With so many players in and out of the line up a lot of bottom 6 type players had plenty of chances to make an impression. If they haven't isn't that worrying from either a coaching perspective, or an adequate depth perspective?
2:57
 
Shelly Anderson: 
They've had a lot of chances, but not always in ideal circumstances, and sometimes things changed quickly because someone else got hurt. It's mostly because of the injuries that the third and fourth lines are not set in stone.
2:57
 
Comment From Reginald 
So I've been thinking, will they re-sign Glass and/or Orpik? Because I can put up with a lot of repetitive failings from this team, but think that's my limit.
2:59
 
Shelly Anderson: 
I highly doubt the Penguins would put those two players and "failings" in the same sentence. That said, the team and the players have been tight-lipped as far as free agency. There seems to be an agreement among them and the involved agents to keep away from such discussions publicly so as not to provide distractions.
2:59
 
Comment From pghgolfgirl 
Do you think Jacques Martin will be back next year? It just seems like he's suited for bigger and better things than an assistant coach and there are bound to be a lot of openings (Nashville, Vancouver, Washington?)
3:00
 
Shelly Anderson: 
Great question. I don't know what Jacques Martin's aspirations are. He has been a head coach and a GM. There will be openings around the league -- Nashville opened today.
3:00
 
Comment From Don 
Did Vokoun get much playing time in @ Wilkes-Barre? Enough to maybe make him the #2 goalie in the playoffs?
3:02
 
Shelly Anderson: 
Tomas Vokoun started in two AHL games, Friday and Sunday, a shootout win and a loss in which he gave up three third-period goals, including the winner with 26.6 seconds left. It's great that he was able to get in a couple of games, but all indications are that Jeff Zatkoff is the backup goalie going into the playoffs. It's doubtful Vokoun will play again for the Penguins, if anywhere.
3:03
 
Shelly Anderson: 
Thanks, everyone. We'll get a flavor of the Columbus series before next Monday's chat. Please join us then

 


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