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‘Time is Important’: Unacceptable Penguins Efforts Magnify Problems (+)



Pittsburgh Penguins, Kasperi Kapanen, Washington Capitals

Adversity, be it injury, illness, bad luck, or simply missed opportunity, has been the travel companion for the Pittsburgh Penguins for several years. Even as they finished their back-to-back Stanley Cup championships, they did so with a patchwork defense barely fit for the NHL, let alone the biggest stage.

That seems like a lifetime ago.

We’ve marveled as the team has found ways to win without Sidney Crosby, or Evgeni Malkin, or Kris Letang, or a handful of others, all at once. It’s been a running theme for the past four years.

“Given the circumstances, these guys are getting back in the lineup. I think they’re fighting hard to try to bring their best games. It’s going to take some time for us to hit our stride here,” Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan conceded. “But you know, time is important for us right now. So, I think it’s hard to assess any individual performance. Obviously, we weren’t good enough as a team.”

Time is indeed important. Since crushing the Toronto Maple Leafs more than two weeks ago, the Penguins at 2-4-2. They’ve had more bad periods than good ones. Languishing at the bottom of a stacked Metro Division and losing to division rivals isn’t the way to lift anyone’s spirits.

However, after getting worked in a 6-1 loss to the Washington Capitals on Sunday night, one night after getting run out of the Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa 6-3, there is something different and unacceptable with the Pittsburgh Penguins.

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Pittsburgh Hockey Now Editor-in-Chief, formerly 93.7 The Fan, Sportsnet Hockey Tonight, NHL Home Ice. Catch Dan tweeting @theDanKingerski and the official @pghhockeynow account.

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