Blackhawks, Penguins to play NHL game at Soldier Field

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Jonathan Toews (3rd overall, 2006) and Patrick Kane (1st overall, 2007) took the Blackhawks from a 29th-place finish in 2003-04 to the organization’s first Stanley Cup in 49 years in 2009-10. Sidney Crosby (1st overall, 2005), Evgeni Malkin (2nd overall, 2004) and Marc-Andre Fleury (1st overall, 2003) lifted the Penguins from last place in the league in 2003-04 to Stanley Cup champions in 2008-09. Further details, including national broadcast information and specifics on ticket opportunities for the season-ticket holders of each team, will be released soon, the NHL said. Fans wanting updates can register at . Five of the six most-watched regular-season NHL games in the U.S. in the past 37 years have been played outdoors, the NBL says. This year’s Winter Classic is scheduled for Wednesday, Jan. 1, when the Detroit Red Wings will host the Toronto Maple Leafs at Michigan Stadium on the University of Michigan campus. The first-ever NHL regular-season game contested outdoors was played in 2003 when the Edmonton Oilers hosted the Montreal Canadiens at Commonwealth Stadium. For the 2010 Winter Classic, the Boston Bruins hosted the Philadelphia Flyers at Fenway Park. In February 2011, the Calgary Flames hosted the Canadiens in the 2011 Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic at McMahon Stadium. In 2012, the Flyers hosted the New York Rangers at Citizens Bank Park. source:

Pittsburgh Penguins (1) vs. New York Islanders (8): Puck Daddy’s NHL 2013 Stanley Cup Playoff Preview

ET. May 7: Pittsburgh Penguins at New York Islanders, 7 p.m. ET. May 9: New York Islanders at Pittsburgh Penguins* 7 p.m. ET. May 11: Pittsburgh Penguins at New York Islanders* TBD May 12: New York Islanders at Pittsburgh Penguins* TBD *if necessary Forwards You don’t need much explaining about the Pittsburgh forward group. You know the names. You know what they can bring: 3.38 goals per game (1st in the NHL). When general manager Ray Shero can go out and trade for Western Conference captains Brenden Morrow and Jarome Iginla, and they’ll be part of the team’s offensive depth and not the focus, you know it’s a pretty loaded group. Eight Penguins hit double digits in goals scored. source:

Stanley Cup playoffs: Sidney Crosby returning to Penguins lineup

It will be his first game since his jaw was broken on March 30 — also against the Islanders. Crosby will replace James Neal in the Game 2 lineup. Neal was injured Wednesday. Sidney Crosb returns to action with the Penguins. (AP Phloto) Friday’s game begins at 7 ET in Pittsburgh. Game preview “I’m cleared to play tonight,” Crosby told Pittsburgh radio station KDKA. “I’m excited to get back in there and play in the playoffs.” The doctor “was around and I wasn’t sure if he would give me the OK or even consider it. I’m happy that he did and happy to be back. He’s comfortable with me getting hit at this point. That’s the biggest thing. source:

Pittsburgh Penguins vs. NY Islanders: 5 Keys for Pens to Win NHL Playoff Series


Among them is James Neal. The former Dallas Star led the NHL in power-play goals last season with 18 goals. With adept playmakers in Malkin and Crosby, along with Kris Letang up top, it’s hard to stop the Penguins’ hot power play. At the same time, the Penguins should be cautious about giving the Islanders man-advantage opportunities. The Islanders are only converting on about a fifth of their opportunities, but the Penguins’ penalty kill has been subpar. An important key to winning the special teams battle would be for more defensively minded blueliners to step up. Paul Martin and Douglas Murray need to play a shutdown role on the penalty kill.  Goaltending Fleury shutting down a New Jersey Devil. Bruce Bennett/Getty Images Marc-Andre Fleury’s performance will determine how far the Penguins go in the playoffs. That said, his play in net is key to the Penguins beating the Islanders. Fleury started the last three games of the season for the Penguins. All three of those teams are not excluded from the postseason, yet Fleury only earned a win versus the Carolina Hurricanes. source:

NHL playoffs: Beau Bennett’s growth is making a deep Penguins team, even deeper

That’s a goal-scorer’s goal, and a really pretty one.” The point was Bennett’s 15th in 23 games and the exact sort of play he’s made more frequently down the stretch. Earlier this season, Bennett was trying to survive. Now, he’s beyond that—it’s just not about avoiding mistakes. It’s about using the vision and speed that took him from Gardena, Calif., to the British Columbia Hockey League to the University of Denver to the first round of the NHL draft in the first place. Now, he’s in Pittsburgh—and he might not be in the lineup for good, but someday soon, he should be. “When I first came in here, I was just trying to be responsible and get pucks out, not be a liability out there,” Bennett said, adding that coach Dan Bylsma had been on him about starting games slowly. “As of late, I’ve been trying to hold onto the puck a little bit more and make plays from there. It’s just a confidence thing.” Bylsma was impressed. “(Bennett’s skill) was evident five-on-five as well with some of the shifts that he had in the offensive zone, and that’s something that he’s added with us after he got called back up (in late March),” Bylsma said,” Glass was, too. He also scored his first playoff goal—in his 25th postseason game. source:


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