Penguins Never Backed Up

The Penguins are going to the Stanley Cup finals thanks to last night’s impressive win over the Penguins. Puck Daddy had a nice look at how the Penguins did it. I’d like to add one other reason to the pile, though.

Penguins coach Dan Bylsma had the Penguins play an aggressive defense, with players pinching ever so slightly and the Penguins always making the first move in their own zone. Contrast that with Paul Maurice’s more traditional defense, which had his players constantly backing up, letting the Penguins make the first move, waiting to capitalize on a mistake. The only flaw in that plan was that the Penguins didn’t make enough mistakes. All the defense did was give the Penguins enough space to make plays.

I’m curious how Bylsma’s defense will work against Detroit, a fast and tricky team. If your defense is too aggressive against them, you’re going to give up an odd-man rush.

Oh. And could hockey have its own steroid scandal? A pair of alleged steroid dealers in Florida are saying they dealt to members of the Washington Capitals. This will be something interesting to keep an eye on. But given the dealers also say they dealt to the Washington Nationals, I can’t imagine the alleged steroids were very good or helpful.

Speaking of the Caps, Sergei Fedorov to the KHL is not a done deal. Yet.