THE Pittsburgh Penguins are the news du jour around the NHL media circles and the backroom chatter. Flip to any Canadian channel, and they’re talking Penguins and potential Sidney Crosby trade rumors or an Evgeni Malkin – Penguins trade. Flip to national websites, Penguins. Click on Pittsburgh Hockey Now, yep, the Penguins’ future. In the media frenzy, Brian Burke did give an answer that sheds light on Mike Sullivan’s long term outlook.
Everyone, including us, has dissected every inch of the hires and what it could mean for the immediate and future direction of the club or a blockbuster Penguins trade. In the 31 Thoughts on Sportsnet, new President of Hockey Operations Brian Burke replied to his former colleague Elliotte Friedman why other GM candidates backed out and why he took the job. In his answers, he said, “…a coach I trust.” (Sportsnet)
Friedman also noted that teams have called about Malkin in the past couple of years but were rebuffed.
So, to recap, Malkin not being traded, no pending bombshell Penguins trade, and Mike Sullivan already has the trust of the President of Hockey Operations (the two worked together on a couple of Team USA teams). Anything to the contrary is fan porn.
To the ice!
Why can’t the Pittsburgh Penguins power play score? Watch this breakdown (PHN+)
The Burke and Hextall hire on Tuesday created an avalanche of news. Here are the little stories and Grade A quotes from their introduction that didn’t make it into the news stories (Pittsburgh Hockey Now)
If you would like to subscribe to PHN+ but are on the fence — Happy Valentine’s Day. Get a full year for just $19.99 (Subscribe PHN+)
The North Division may be better than the East. Toronto scored three third-period goals to beat Montreal, and the lid came off Canada (TSN)
National Hockey Now
Did you see the Boston game? I could write for days on the Bruins 3-2 OT win over the New York Rangers. First, Jake DeBrusk probably scored a goal, but replay denied it (Boston Hockey Now)
THEN, Tuuka Rask thought Boston was behind and bolted for the bench in the final minute. The bench was screaming–NO! Go back! Rask laughed off his massive brainfart (Boston Hockey Now)
Mr. Adrian Dater has a few days to kill. Who are THE best Colorado Avalanche players ever? (Colorado Hockey Now)
New York will allow fans in the stands beginning Feb. 23. Testing, facemasks, and restrictions apply (NYI Hockey Now)
Perhaps when Pennsylvania catches up to the rest of the country in vaccine rates, we too can have fans.
Speaking of Philadelphia, the new crew at Philly Hockey Now is crushing it. Here’s the film room–Carter Hart’s turning point (Philly Hockey Now)
And, finally, Tom Brady sure had fun in the Tampa Bay celebration. I’m not as think as you drunk I am! (Sportsnet)
When you win your seventh Super Bowl at 43-years-old, you’ve earned the right to get plastered for days.