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Dan’s Daily: Oshie Nearly Traded to Penguins in 2015; Pens Down to Last



Pittsburgh Penguins Washington Capitals

The Pittsburgh Penguins played energetically and so often well, but every mistake was in their net, and they lost to the New York Rangers. The loss was a near-fatal blow to any remaining playoff hopes and put their season down to Sunday’s game against the Detroit Red Wings. A loss Sunday would put them nine points back, and it would be absolutely over. The NHL news Sunday morning is otherwise mundane. Elliotte Friedman says relocation is on the table in Arizona, but only if they lose the land auction in June. The Athletic opines the Anaheim Ducks must stop selling and become buyers on the NHL trade market. The other Metro Division teams stink, and T.J. Oshie admitted he thought he was being traded to the Penguins instead of the Capitals in 2015.

Saturday should have been illuminating for Penguins president of hockey operations/GM Kyle Dubas. The Penguins team brought their best effort and lost 7-4. I spared no feelings and left no stone unturned in the Penguins’ grades, but I’ll echo one point I made in the Grades up here before pointing you to read the pile driver below. The Penguins’ loss was purely a result of roster construction; it wasn’t a lack of talent or effort, but roster construction. I’ve got a few more points of unflattering analysis in the Grades.

I hope many of you got to enjoy St. Patrick’s Day. I was quite jealous. Every year, I’m working and absolutely green with envy (you see what I did there?).

Pittsburgh Penguins

Pittsburgh Hockey Now: Oh that recap. One step forward, two steps back. The Penguins’ depth players are scoring, but it’s just not enough, and the Penguins lost to the Rangers 7-4. Dave Molinari’s Penguins recap.

The backbreaking moment came in the final four minutes of the second period. The Penguins yielded a questionable power play goal as it appeared Tristan Jarry may have covered the puck for the briefest moment before Chris Krieder kicked it away. Kris Letang didn’t like the call, so the referees gave him a penalty, and the Penguins gave up another power-play goal. Here’s Letang’s and the team’s reaction to both questionable calls and the heartbreaking loss in the Penguins locker room.

Is Valtteri Puustinen progressing? Molinari’s six-pack from the latest disappointment, including the painful pivotal point in the Penguins takeaways.

Ryan Graves, Mike Sullivan, and the issues that submarined the Penguins’ superior effort in the Penguins report card.

PHN Video: Analysis and readers Q&A. We take no prisoners in the Penguins postgame.

NHL Trade Talk, News & National Hockey Now

RMNB: T.J. Oshie played his 1000th game Saturday. The Capitals’ power forward is coming to the end, but he told the story that he expected to be traded to the Penguins and was told a deal was almost done back in 2015.

Would the Penguins have won more Cups if Oshie were here? Less? Wow, that would have been a history-changing moment.

The Athletic ($): It’s time for the Anaheim Ducks to stop tearing it down, stop rebuilding and start building. It’s time to become buyers on the NHL trade market and start improving.

Hockey Night in Canada: We’re coming to the fork in the road for the Arizona Coyotes. If they don’t win the land auction, it sounds like it is over. Elliotte Friedman has the scoop.

Philly Hockey Now: The Bruins stole a win, keeping the playoff race jumbled as the Philadelphia Flyers defense crumbled.

NYI Hockey Now: The Islanders have their playoff fate within their hands, but they lost to Ottawa and kicked themselves afterward. The New York Islanders weren’t desperate.

Detroit Hockey Now: The seven-game losing streak is over, and the Detroit Red Wings are back in a playoff spot.