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Penguins Postgame: Another Sad Microcosm of Pens’ Season



It was a storybook weekend. It was the return of the prodigal son Jaromir Jagr, whose jersey was retired in a moving and joyous celebration before the game. Former owner Mario Lemieux and a cast of former Penguins, including Ron Francis and Kevin Stevens, were part of the celebration. The Pittsburgh Penguins led the LA Kings 1-0 with under seven minutes remaining.

The Penguins players who wore Jagr-like mullet wigs in warmups had honored their own with a solid defensive effort. Sidney Crosby scored a power-play goal, and they led late into the third period.

Must Read: Penguins Grades: Toxic Power Play, Inexplicable Mistakes Crushing Season

First, bad luck beset the Penguins as Adrian Kempe’s long shot hit defenseman John Ludvig in front of the net. Ludvig didn’t play it well, deflecting the puck past goalie Tristan Jarry to tie the game.

And just as it has all season, the Penguins’ power play let them down. Not only did the man advantage fail to score or generate momentum on a late chance, but the Penguins gave up a shorthanded goal with 3:10 left. Game winner.

Good goaltending. A chance to win. All ruined by mistakes and a bad power play. We spare no feelings in the postgame. Any residue of positivity depends on the next three games at home. Win all three, including games against the New York Islanders and Philadelphia Flyers, and there’s a chance. Lose any one of the next three and the U-Haul trucks will whisk players away before the March 8 NHL trade deadline.