Game Day Report: Game Four – Pens @ Jets

Pittsburgh will be looking to bounce back from a dismal game this past Wednesday against the Toronto Maple Leafs when they take on the Winnipeg Jets tonight at 8:00.

EVERY DAY THEY’RE SHUFFLING
Coach Dan Bylsma has switched things up in hopes to provide his team a spark offensively. No longer is Eric Tangradi on the second line with Evgeni Malkin and James Neal, that position has been given to Tyler Kennedy. Kennedy should provide that line with tenacious board play, speed, and scoring touch, all of which is something Eric Tangradi failed to show in his brief stint in that position.

“It’s been a while since I’ve played a game, but my job is to be ready when called upon. I try to be the best player I can in practice and the time has come and I’m going to get in the game tonight.”
-Ben Lovejoy

Ben Lovejoy will be making his first appearance of the 2012-2013 season, while Simon Depres will be a healthy scratch. Goalie Tomas Vokoun will be making his second start of the season tonight against Winnipeg.

WILL THE PENGUINS BE FOCUSED?
Defenseman Kris Letang admitted earlier this week that they may not have “gotten up” for Toronto after two big games to start the season and Coach Bylsma echoed the same thoughts, saying “we didn‘t have the same attention to detail” as they had in the previous two games.

It’s not hard to tell that the Pens were less than excited with their performance against the Maple Leafs Wednesday night and that they let their emotions get the best of them. Both Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin we’re obviously upset with the officiating during the game. Malkin ended the night with a game misconduct.

In order to win in Winnipeg, the Penguins will need to return to the laser-like focus they had in their first two games against the New York Rangers and Philadelphia Flyers.

A HOMECOMING (OF SORTS)
Tanner Glass will be returning to Winnipeg for the first time as an opponent since he signed with the Penguins this past offseason. Glass played in Winnipeg during the 2011-12 season, notching 5-goals, 11-assists, and 246 hits as a member of the Jets.

NOTEWORTHY STATS
Vokoun is 14-10-4 in 30 games against Winnipeg/Atlanta.

Tyler Kennedy has 11 points (4G-7A) in 14 games against the Jets franchise.

Pascal Dupuis was credited with his first assist of the season on Crosby’s goal Wednesday night. Dupuis has points in two straight games (1G-1A).

Ben Lovejoy has played 5 games against the Jets. He has two points during those games.

Evgeni Malkin has points in all three games this season.

Pittsburgh’s Power Play is clicking at an unprecedented 38.46% while Winnipeg’s Penalty Kill is 75%. Look for a lot of puck movement by the Pens on the man-advantage.

The Penguins come into tonights game with a Goals Per Game of 3.67. The Jets enter tonight with a Goals Per Game of 2.00.

Evander Kane has more penalty minutes (22) against the Pittsburgh Penguins than any other team in the league. In his career, Kane has just one goal in 10 games against Pittsburgh.

Ondrej Pavelec is just 1-10 against the Penguins in his career with a Goals Against Average of 4.81.

In his career, Dustin Byfuglien’s plus minus rating is a -9 against two teams: The Pittsburgh Penguins and the Columbus Blue Jackets.

LINES:
Probable Jets lines
Ladd-Antropov-Little
Kane-Jokinen-Wheeler
Ponikarovsky-Burmistrov-Wellwood
Wright-Slater-Thorburn

Enstrom-Byfuglien
Stuart-Hainsey
Clitsome-Postma

Probable Penguins lines
Kunitz-Crosby-Dupuis
Kennedy-Malkin-Neal
Cooke-Sutter-Glass
Tangradi-Vitale-Adams

Orpik-Martin
Letang-Niskanen
Lovejoy-Engelland

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