Penguins Notebook: Bylsma thinks Kennedy can do much more
Tyler Kennedy , Pittsburgh Penguins NHL web 2007 Original Filename: kennedy.jpg PUBLISHED CAPTION: Kris Letang, left, and Tyler Kennedy showed up to the training facility Tuesday for the first time this offseason. Original Filename: kennedy0918.jpg
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Penguins winger Tyler Kennedy clearly was relieved after scoring his first goal in 15 games Wednesday night.
It also was apparent he would have enjoyed it a lot more if Philadelphia hadn't beaten the Penguins, 6-5, in that game.
"I'd rather win," Kennedy said after practice Thursday at Southpointe.
Kennedy added that he does not measure his performance solely by statistics. "I have to make sure I do the little things. If you do the little things and work hard, I think good things will come."
Coach Dan Bylsma didn't argue the point, but left no doubt he expects more than he has gotten from Kennedy through the 17 games leading up to the meeting tonight with Florida at Consol Energy Center.
"I don't necessarily weigh his game just on the points he's getting or how many goals he gets," Bylsma said. "His job, oftentimes, is to play against other teams' good lines, and he needs to do that by playing tenacious, playing in the offensive zone, making it tough on the other team by being that type of presence against other teams' good lines.
"That's a lot of how he's judged on the game, with and without the puck, and there hasn't been enough of that from Tyler. Tyler needs to be better at that, and that's where his game is when he's really good."
The hunt for composure
The Penguins failed to maintain their composure at various points in the Philadelphia game, a fairly common -- and often costly -- occurrence against the Flyers.
"We went through it last year in the playoffs," center Sidney Crosby said. "At the end of the day, we can't hold each others' hands on the ice and stop someone from making a reaction or having a reaction that's going to affect us or [lead to] a retaliatory penalty.
"We're all well aware of the situation. We know we're playing Philadelphia. We know it's going to be intense. We've got to find a way individually to get over that and make sure we control our emotions.
"It's just up to us individually to make sure we're not letting it get to us. If it happens to one guy, then the next guy sees that. It's kind of contagious."
No TKO, just smiles
It began, Tanner Glass recalled, as a pretty standard-issue NHL fight.
Philadelphia's Brayden Schenn hit him from behind, earning a cross-checking minor and sparking a skirmish that ended with Glass and Flyers forward Wayne Simmonds trading punches.
"We just happened to come together after the Schenn cross-check, and he's the guy I paired up with," Glass said. "And there it is."
The somewhat unusual part of their battle came at the end, when both Glass and Simmonds were smiling as the linesmen separated them.
"I don't think either of us minded [fighting] too much," Glass said.
"It was just kind of one of those things. It was a good fight. We both got our licks in and ended up with a smile on our faces."
Having a bad game sometimes costs players ice time.
For backup goalie Tomas Vokoun, an off-night in the loss against Philadelphia, when he allowed six goals on 32 shots -- including the winner from behind the goal line -- it actually might lead to some extra work.
Or, at least, some more work sooner than he might otherwise have gotten it.
Bylsma said that, although Marc-Andre Fleury will start against the Panthers tonight, his inclination is to get a goalie who had a night like Vokoun did Wednesday back into a game quickly, so he doesn't stew in the details and disappointments of a poor showing.
"Obviously, there were some bounces in that game and some pucks that Tomas would like to have back, but he's a really good goalie," Bylsma said.
"I'm more likely to get him back in there [sooner] and have him play a strong game for us."
Dustin Jeffrey took Joe Vitale's usual spot between Glass and Craig Adams on the fourth line in practice Thursday, but it is not known who will dress for the Panthers game. ... Alex Kovalev, who had two stints with the Penguins, has two goals and three assists in 13 games after going to Florida's camp on a tryout and earning a contract.
First Published February 22, 2013 12:00 am