Wednesday, September 30, 2009

FIREWORKS (the Bucs Won't Be the Only Ones!)!!

The Penguins just announced that a post-game fireworks display (weather permitting) has been added to the festivities for Friday’s regular-season opener against the New York Rangers at Mellon Arena.

COOL!!!!!!!

PARTY at the Igloo on Friday!!!!!!!!!!!!

Bye-Bye Bissi (aka Biz-Nasty), Hello Bourque!

I just had a gut feeling that some of the players the Penguins put on waivers yesterday would not clear to make it back to WB / S. One of those players I had a gut feeling about was Paul Bissonnette and GUESS WHAT - the Phoenix Coyotes claimed him off of waivers today (BOOOO!)!!! There goes a good fighter / enforcer, but like the Pensblog said, he'll get more playing time on that team then he would've here in Pittsburgh.

We'll definitely miss you on the ice Biz Nasty!!!!!

In related news, the Penguins picked up forward Chris Bourque off waivers today (NO - not the son of Phil Bourque, but the son of RAY Bourque). Bourque was drafted in the second round of the 2004 NHL Entry Draft (33rd overall) and spent the last five years with the Washington organization.

I'd say the Penguins are taking [new] shape and it's only a few days before the season begins!!

52 New Names Inscribed on the Stanley Cup

Yesterday, the Stanley Cup returned from the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto slightly different than it was sent as the names of the 2009 Stanley Cup Champions have now been inscribed onto the coveted trophy making it all official and leaving only the banner-raising ceremony left to put it all in the history books.

Here are the 52 names allowed by the league that have been inscribed on the Stanley Cup which includes ownership, executive staff, coaches, players and hockey operations staff:

2009 STANLEY CUP CHAMPION PITTSBURGH PENGUINS

MANAGEMENT AND STAFF (27)
Mario Lemieux, Ron Burkle, Bill Kassling, Tom Grealish, Tony Liberati, Ken Sawyer, David Morehouse, Ray Shero, Chuck Fletcher, Ed Johnston, Jason Botterill, Dan Bylsma, Mike Yeo, Tom Fitzgerald, Gilles Meloche, Mike Kadar, Travis Ramsay, Chris Stewart, Scott Adams, Mark Mortland, Dana Heinze, Paul DeFazio, Danny Kroll, Frank Buonomo, Tom McMillan, Dan MacKinnon, Jay Heinbuck

PLAYERS (25)
Sidney Crosby (Capt.), Sergei Gonchar, Evgeni Malkin, Craig Adams, Philippe Boucher, Matt Cooke, Pascal Dupuis, Mark Eaton, Ruslan Fedotenko, Marc-Andre Fleury, Mathieu Garon, Hal Gill, Eric Godard, Alex Goligoski, Bill Guerin, Tyler Kennedy, Chris Kunitz, Kristopher Letang, Brooks Orpik, Miroslav Satan, Robert Scuderi, Jordan Staal, Petr Sykora, Maxime Talbot, Mike Zigomanis


HOW AWESOME IS THAT??!!!!

Penguins Organization Receive Champs Rings

Last night the Penguins received their Stanley Cup Championship rings at a private ceremony.
Each 14 karat white and yellow gold ring contains 167 diamonds, totaling approximately 4.50 carats of diamonds and averaging approximately 100 grams of gold. The top of the ring is crowned with a custom-cut black onyx imbedded with a 1.3 carat pear-shaped diamond to create the Penguins logo. The logo is placed on an image of the Stanley Cup, which is sitting on a bed of round diamonds replicating the arena and ice surface.

The ring is further adorned with 12 princess-cut diamonds on each side of the shanks. The title “Stanley Cup Champions” is written along the ring’s left and right outer rim/bezel. The left side of the ring features the player’s name and number as well as a list of the team four playoff series victories. The right side of the ring has the year 2009 split with three Stanley Cups, adorned in diamonds. The two outer Stanley Cups are inscribed on top with 91 and 92, paying homage to the Penguins’ two previous championships.

Crosby Back At It

Although Sidney Crosby has been skating for the past three days, he hasn't participated in practice until yesterday since injurying his groin in last Thursday's pre-season game against the Columbus Blue Jackets.

"I feel better," Crosby said. "I’m not where I want to be but it’s progressing and hopefully by Friday (home opener) it’s something I won’t have to worry about. There was no point where I thought I had to get off or felt like it was getting worse, so that’s good."

Players Cut, Others on IR

The Penguins announced yesterday that they cut their active roster down to 21 players.

They placed Ryan Bayda (F), Paul Bissonnette (F), Chris Conner (F), Deryk Engelland (D), and Nate Guenin (D) on waivers with the intention of assigning them to Pittsburgh's AHL affiliate in Wilkes-Barre / Scranton while Max Talbot (F), Mark Letestu (F), and Ben Lovejoy (D) are on the injured reserve (IR) list.

All NHL teams must submit their 23-man active rosters to the league by 3:00 PM today.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Pens Sign Skoula

The Penguins organization has been busy these last few days!!! Yet another announcement today - they signed defenseman Martin Skoula to a one-year contract.

Skoula comes from the Colorado Avalanche who drafted him in the first round of the 1998 NHL Entry Draft.

Skoula adds nine years of NHL experience, including a Stanley Cup championship in 2001 with Colorado, to the Penguins’ roster. He has played in 724 career games and 79 playoff contests during stints in Colorado, Anaheim, Dallas and Minnesota.
I just read that the Penguins signed him just hours after the Columbus Blue Jackets released him (he tried out for and was released by the Florida Panthers in addition to Columbus). Their loss is obviously our gain seeing as how Shero works!!!

Talbot Back on the Ice

Prior to the Penguins regular practice today, Max Talbot skated for the first time since his shoulder surgery this past summer. He'll be out of the Pens lineup for the first two months of the regular season.

ALSO - after signing Ryan Bayda yesterday, Pittsburgh placed him on waivers today, so if he clears, he will be assigned to the Penguins AHL affiliate in Wilkes-Barre / Scranton.

Yesterday's News: Penguins Sign Bayda

[UPDATE - 09/29/2009]
Bayda was placed on waivers today and if he clears, he'll be sent to Pittsburgh's AHL affiliate in Wilkes-Barre / Scranton.

The Penguins announced yesterday that they signed forward Ryan Bayda to a one-year / two-way contract.

Bayda played for the Carolina Hurricanes for five years after being drafted in the third round of the 2000 NHL Entry Draft (80th overall) and played three years at the University of North Dakota prior to that.

He attended this season's training camp on a professional tryout.

INTERESTING SIDENOTE: During the finals on May 22, 2009, Bayda was fined $2,500 as a result of a match penalty he was assessed for cross-checking Kris Letang in the chin at the end of game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Big Screen for Home Opener & Banner Raising

The Penguins announced today that they'll be bringing back the big screen early this season so that those fans without a ticket have the opportunity to watch Pittsburgh's home-opener as well as the banner-raising ceremony prior to opening faceoff this coming Friday.

The Mellon Arena will open doors at 6:00 PM instead of the usual 6:30 PM and ask that fans be in their seats by 7:25 PM.
“This will be another great night for the Pittsburgh Penguins organization, and we’re looking forward to sharing it with the greatest fans in hockey,” said team president David Morehouse. “The big screen is one of our special playoff features, but we wanted to bring it back for this very special opening night.”
In honor of this special occasion, the big screen will begin showing playoff game highlights and the Stanley Cup Championship DVD this coming Wednesday.

CONGRATULATIONS Sidney! Our Hometown Hero

That's what the latest tribute that Nova Scotia is bestowing upon Sidney Crosby reads on the banner they recently hung in the Halifax Robert L. Stanfield International Airport. As if the residents didn't already know, they will be reminded when they fly to and from Nova Scotia that Crosby is the hometown hero!!

The airport teamed up with Reebok Hockey to create two of these banners - one of which was hung in the arrivals area of the terminal building on September 16th (and the other will be installed in the airport's main lobby at a later date). The banners measure 3' wide X 12' long.

You have to admit that it IS pretty sweet (because HE'S ON OUR TEAM!)!!!

Commercial Trailer for Tonight's FSN 2009 Penguins Preview

DON'T FORGET, tonight at 7:00 PM FSN - Pittsburgh will be premiering their 2009 Penguins Preview. Check your local listings for channel(s). In the meantime, here's the trailer for the show:

2009-2010 Penguins Preview

Dave from Illegal Curve asked me to be part of his 2009-2010 Penguins preview. If you get a chance, check it out (in the meantime, here's a snippet of my contribution)!!

Well to start off, being the defending Stanley Cup Champs, the Pens already have a mark on their backs so I’m thinking that teams will step up their game when playing against them at least in the beginning. The other difference this year is that they won’t have to prove anything to anyone with a Stanley Cup under their belt.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Another Player Cut

The Penguins announced today that they re-assigned goaltender John Curry to their AHL affiliate Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins. With Pittsburgh signing veteran goalie, Johnson, it was pretty much decided that Curry's chance wouldn't be coming this season (unless Johnson is injured).

I really, REALLY like Curry and hope that he gets his chance in the NHL soon (with the Penguins preferrably!)!!!

This leaves Pittsburgh with five additional players to cut before Wednesday to get their roster down to 23.

[UPDATE] Final Pre-Season Game Against Detroit

[UPDATE]


Here is the line combinations for the game:

Forwards
Kunitz-Staal-Guerin
Conner-Kennedy-Dupuis
Cooke-Adams-Bayda
Bissonnette-Rupp-Godard

Defensemen
Orpik-Letang
Goligoski-Engelland
McKee-Guenin

Goaltenders

Fleury
Johnson

This one should be interesting. The game will be broadcast on 105.9 "the X" instead of the Penguins new HD radio station streaming on the webpage.
also on NHLN - US (HD)
Gametime: 5:00 PM

The Penguins webpage reports that there wasn't a morning skate, so line combinations aren't known (and even though Croby skated this morning, it isn't known whether or not he'll be in the lineup due to his sore groin that everyone has been hearing so much about!). Here is the roster:

Forwards
Craig Adams
Ryan Bayda
Paul Bissonnette
Chris Conner
Matt Cooke
Sidney Crosby (TBD)
Pascal Dupuis
Ruslan Fedotenko
Eric Godard
Bill Guerin
Tyler Kennedy
Chris Kunitz
Evgeni Malkin
Mike Rupp
Jordan Staal

Defensemen
Mark Eaton
Deryk Engelland
Alex Goligoski
Sergei Gonchar
Nate Guenin
Kris Letang
Jay McKee
Brooks Orpik

Goaltenders
Marc-Andre Fleury
Brent Johnson

A Look at Brent Johnson's New Goalie Mask

Brent Johnson's new goalie mask is a tribute to Led Zeppelin - more specifically Stairway to Heaven - complete with the symbols and all. Check it out (VERY COOL!)!!!



K-Mart Superstar!!

Yesterday, Max Talbot was at the McIntyre Square K-mart to sign autographs (in another FUN-colored shirt!). He actually stayed longer than he was scheduled to be there (he IS a superstar!)!!!



Thursday, September 24, 2009

Line-Up for Tonight's Pre-Season Game Against Columbus


Forwards
Kunitz-Crosby-Guerin
Fedotenko-Malkin-Kennedy
Cooke-Staal-Conner
Bissonnette-Rupp-Godard / Bayda

Defensemen
Eaton-Guenin
Goligoski-Engelland
McKee-Letang

Goaltender
Fleury
Curry

Again, the game will be broadcast on the Penguins new HD radio station. If you're hoping to watch the action, try ATDHE.net right before the game is set to start (7:00 PM).

Lovejoy Injury Could Leave Remaining D-man Spot Up for Grabs

According to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Lovejoy left Tuesday's game due to a shoulder injury and if it turns out to be serious, it could make it a two-player competition for the last defensman spot on the Penguins roster for Nate Guenin and Deryk Engelland.

PT-R did report that "Lovejoy remains a candidate to win the job," but that he did not practice yesterday at Southpointe.

"I have not heard a report on his situation," Penguins coach Dan Bylsma said.


G20 Gift Packs - I Want One!!

So the President will be receiving yet ANOTHER Penguins jersey just because he chose Pittsburgh as the site of the G20 Summit - this one dons "09" instead of "44" (*sigh*). In addition, world leaders will be getting a taste of Pittsburgh with the gift boxes they'll be receiving which includes either an autographed puck or jersey!!
"And today and through these gifts, we're ensuring that the culture in this city travels home to countries all around the world," said Mayor Luke Ravenstahl.
You can bet that Ravenstahl received one of these gift packs - just because (he's probably received several of these types of gift packs over his tenure as Pittsburgh's mayor!)!!


PRETTY SWEET, HUH?!!

Penguins 2009-2010 Season Preview on FSN

Tune in to FSN - Pittsburgh on Monday, September 28th at 7:00 PM.
Bob Errey and Jay Caufield preview the upcoming season and provide analysis of the defending Stanley Cup champions. What will Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin do for an encore? What will be the impact of newcomers Jay McKee, Mike Rupp and Brent Johnson? What will new assistant coach Tony Granato bring to Dan
Bylsma’s staff? Packed with interviews, highlights, commentary and more.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Johnson Hurt in Last Night's Pre-Season Game

According to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Brent Johnson "tweaked a knee midway through the second period on a collision with Toronto center Tyler Bozak" after he stopped his shot.

Johnson finished the period, but Curry had to finish the game in the third as Johnson did not return.

"We will see (about Johnson's status)," Penguins coach Dan Bylsma said. "It was more precautionary than anything."
Last season, Johnson had hip surgery, which kept him out for the rest of the season for the Washington Capitals.

Penguins Make Additional Cuts

The Penguins announced today that they reduced their roster by thirteen players. The following have be re-assigned to Pittsburgh's AHL affiliate in Wilkes-Barre / Scranton:
FORWARDS - Wade Brookbank, Luca Caputi, Dustin Jeffrey, Nick Johnson, Konstantin Pushkarev, Wyatt Smith, Eric Tangradi, Joe Vitale, Tim Wallace; DEFENSEMEN - Robert Bortuzzo, Jonathan D’Aversa, Chris Lee; and GOALTENDER - Brad Thiessen.

Penguins first-round draft pick Simon Depres has be re-assigned to Saint John of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL).

They have until September 30th to reduce the roster before the regular season.

That's So MAF (the musings of a Penguins goalie)!

If you're not from Pittsburgh and / or didn't hear his interview on "The X" 105.9 last Friday (September 18th), I'm posting a link -- definitely worth your time!!


THE KID IS HILARIOUS!!!!!!!!

FSN to Televise 70 Penguins Games (in HD)

Yesterday, FSN announced that they will be broadcasting a minimum of 70 games during the upcoming Penguins 2009-2010 season beginning with the first home game on October 2nd against the NY Rangers. Paul Steigerwald and Bob Errey return as the announcer and color-analyst for the games on FSN. They will begin with pregame at 6:30 PM hosted by Stan Savran and post-game coverage with Rob King and Jay Caufield.
"When the defending Stanley Cup Champions raise the banner on October 2 on FSN it will be a historic night. Not only will we celebrate the franchise's third Cup, but the game will launch the first season during which FSN Pittsburgh will deliver all 70 of the Penguins games in HD,” said FSN Senior Vice President & General Manager Ted Black.
In addition to televising the games, they plan to continue broadcasting special Penguins programming including the return of "Penguins Instant Replay" and "Penguins Rewind." Other programs will include:
  • Spotlight: Penguins Preview 09’ (debuts Monday, September 28th at 7:00 PM) followed by
  • The Raw Tapes: Pens Summer Celebration '09 (at 7:30 PM)
And the following programs which are set to air in October / November:
  • In My Own Words: Sidney Crosby, Season IV
  • The Raw Tapes: Pens Summer Celebration ’91
  • The Raw Tapes: Pens Summer Celebration ’92

Pens Lose Third Pre-Season Game in SO

Pens - 2, Maple Leafs - 3 (SO)

Again, I missed the game, but looking at the Game Summary, I also missed a pretty active fight night (one in each period). My regret is missing Jordan Staal take on Mike Komisarek both receiving 5-minute fighting majors (UGH - I MISSED IT!)!!! I'm anxious to see the video on that.


Interestingly, the Penguins only dressed "five players who appeared in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals" - but that's pre-season hockey.

NEXT GAME - Thursday, September 24th @ 7:00 PM (Columbus Blue Jackets)

I hope I get out of this "funk" I'm in -- normally, I would be listening to every second of a pre-season game whether it sucked or not -- I'm seriously thinking I do have my own case of a Stanley Cup hangover (it's OK only if I get over it by October 2nd which I'm thinking I will especially since I'LL BE THERE TO WATCH THEM RAISE THE BANNER - that should do the trick!!)!!!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Tonight's Lineup Against the Leafs in Toronto

Forwards
Cooke-Staal-Kennedy
Conner-Jeffrey-Fedotenko
N.Johnson-Rupp-Pushkarev/Bayda
Bissonnette-Smith-Brookbank

Defensemen
McKee-Goligoski
Eaton-Bortuzzo
Lovejoy-Guenin

Goaltenders
B.Johnson
Curry
The game will be broadcast on the Penguins' new HD radio channel at 105.9 HD2 and streamed live on www.pittsburghpenguins.com. Steve Mears, host of the "Penguins Live" show on the HD channel, will handle the play-by-play with Phil Bourque providing color.
The NHL Network will also be broadcasting the game on television (the station is picking up the TSN feed from Canada).

A few readers had said that sometimes the NHL Network has free live streams online, so check that if you don't have the NHL Network.

Penguins Lose Second Pre-Season Game After Having a Lead

Penguins - 3, Canadiens - 4

Well, I really can't say too much about this game since I didn't get to listen to it, so I don't have an opinion. For WHATEVER REASON, I just can't seem to get myself into the pre-season (even though it's hockey!) -- maybe I'm having a Stanley Cup hangover!!! Even at the game I was at last Friday, it was different and I just couldn't get into it.

The one thing I can point out (the obvious) is that this is the second time the team has given up a lead - no big deal really since this is pre-season and the lines / combinations are constantly changing and are not the ones that they'll be playing with come October 2nd.

"It was OK," ... "We haven't got a lot of chances to practise it. We've still got some kinks to work out, like timing. As we go on we have to improve, no doubt. but it's good to have everybody together" - Sidney Crosby

If anyone else had a chance to see / listen to the game and has any thoughts, please feel free to comment!!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Third Pre-Season Game Tonight - UPDATED

[UPDATE]
The Penguins released the lineup for tonight's pre-season game against the Canadiens.

Forwards
Caputi-Crosby-Guerin
Kunitz-Malkin-Tangradi
Dupuis-Adams-Wallace
Bayda-Jeffrey-Godard

Defensemen
Lovejoy-Engelland
Despres-Letang
Orpik-Gonchar

Goaltenders
Fleury
Curry

The game will be broadcast on the Penguins' new HD radio channel at 105.9 HD2 and streamed live on www.pittsburghpenguins.com. Steve Mears, host of the "Penguins Live" show on the HD channel, will handle the play-by-play with Phil Bourque providing color.
Let's hope they practiced their penalty killing a bit seeing as how all four of the Maple Leafs goals came on powerplay opportunities.

Anyway, tonight's game will be on RDS, TSN2, the NHL Network (US) and on

Jordan Staal Movie Trailer

THANKS to Karl M. for passing along this info and including the link (FUNNY stuff!)!!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Black and Gold Game LIVE

Listen to the Black and Gold Game from Wilkes-Barre LIVE HERE (they're just starting the second period).

Sykora to Minnesota

Well it has come to pass.

Petr Sykora is now part of the Minnesota Wild. The Wild signed Sykora to a 1-year / $1.6 million contract today.

Penguins Reduce Roster to 43

The Penguins announced yesterday that they reduced their training camp roster to 43.

The following ten players have been assigned to Pittsburgh's AHL affiliate in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton: forwards Aaron Boogaard, Zack Sill, Joey Haddad, Casey Pierro-Zabotel, Nick Petersen and Keven Veilleux; defensemen Lane Caffaro, Brian Strait and Alex Grant; and goaltender Jordan Parise.

The Penguins have re-assigned forward Nathan Moon to the OHL Kingston Frontenacs and released defenseman Jamie Hunt.

This leaves Pittsburgh with 26 forwards, 13 defensemen and four goaltenders remaining in training camp.

Pittsburgh will have to reduce the roster once again by September 30th to 23 players prior to the start of the regular season.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Don't Depend on Malkin for Dates!

OK -- this is like the second time I posted a date given by Malkin which turned out to be incorrect. The first time was with the team's visit to the White House (which was only a day off) and now it's the month for when they'll be receiving their championship rings (which is about a month off!)!!

According to Rob Rossi, the Penguins will be receiving their rings sometime prior to the beginning of the regular season which is pretty soon (Malkin said that it would be in November)!

Rossi also gives some interesting tidbits about the ring:

  • although the rings are "silver colored," the material is more expensive than sterling silver (platinum, maybe?)

  • although the rings will be "larger than any in the history of Stanley Cup-winning teams," they do not compare in size to the rings which the 2008-2009 Steelers received for winning Super Bowl XLIII (SO GLAD - I really do think those are awfully gaudy-looking!)

  • inscribed on the rings: results of each playoff series and surnames of club personnel

  • Crosby had input into the design, but the only person to have seen the final product is HC Bylsma
Rossi also mentioned that the names of 52 members of the Penguins organization involved in the 2009 Championship team will be inscribed later this month!

Sykora Expected to be Signed After Wild Tryout

According to TwinCities.com (the Pioneer Press), it's expected that the Minnesota Wild will sign Petr Sykora after his pro-tryout with them.
Turns out, a tryout simply means the player is unsigned and must travel to the prospective team on his own dime. The likelihood of Sykora not making the Wild is about that of Derek Boogaard scoring 20 goals this season.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Pre-Season Game Lineup

[UPDATE]
The game will be broadcast tonight on "The X" 105.9 featuring Mike Lange and the "Ol' 2-9er," Phil Bourque.


The Penguins webpage have released the following lineup for tonight's pre-season game against the Columbus Blue Jackets:

Forwards
Kunitz-Crosby-Tangradi (<-- this will be interesting and I'm looking forward to seeing him on Crosby's line)
Dupuis-Staal-Fedotenko
Conner-Jeffrey-Bayda
Sill-Vitale-Godard

Defensemen
Despres-Gonchar
Eaton-Engelland
McKee-Bortuzzo

Goaltenders
Fleury
Thiessen

I'm guessing that a few of the big-name players (Malkin, Orpik, Kennedy, Guerin, etc.), are absent from the lineup in order for the coaching staff to get a feel of all the players they haven't seen on the ice up to this point (and perhaps for the "veteran" players to get a little more rest before the regular season starts).

I'm very anxious for this and seeing all the new faces and how they fit in. I'm hoping that the game will at least be broadcast over the radio.

Speaking of radio, the webpage has a link to the Penguins Live Podcast (the full lineup won't debut until October 1st, but there will be special limited broadcasts during training camp).

Broadcast of Tonight's Pre-Season Game

[UPDATE]
As I had posted before, the NHL Network plans to broadcast a few pre-season games (Penguins being three of them), but not tonight's game and it doesn't look like anything will be broadcast (at this point) according to the Penguins schedule. If anyone finds a live stream, please be sure to pass along the information - THANKS!!

I'm not aware of any at the present time, but if I find any live streams of the game tonight, I'll be sure to post it here; otherwise, they'll probably broadcast in on "The X" 105.9 (but I'm not certain about that either).


Check back here for any updates through the day!!

Minnesota Invites Sykora to Training Camp

Chuck Fletcher, Minnesota Wild's new GM, announced yesterday that they've invited former Penguins forward Petr Sykora to training camp "on a pro tryout" and is scheduled to join the team later this week.

Talbot's Back!

Well, his blog is anyway.



Sunday, September 13, 2009

New Email Address

With the upcoming move to FanHuddle.com, there will be a transitioning of the blog and a few other things like email.

Although you can continue to reach me at thesteelcitysportsfan@gmail.com, my NEW email (and the one I would PREFER you to use to contact me regarding the Pens, the TSCSF blog and things both Pens and TSCSF-related is):


Even though FanHuddle won't launch for another few weeks, this email is fully operational and you can email me there from this point on.

Let's Talk Hockey!!

  1. Pittsburgh Penguins' Tyler Kennedy celebrates scoring during hockey practice at the Mellon Arena in Pittsburgh on Thursday, June 11, 2009. The Penguins face the Detroit Red Wings in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals on Friday, June 12, in Detroit.
The players reported back to Pittsburgh yesterday for the beginning of training camp with mostly off-ice things to go through like physicals and such.

Today was the first day everyone was back on the ice as a team, so we can now officially start talking about hockey (YESSSSSS!)!!

Since alot of the focus has been on the Stanley Cup and the players / Penguins organization celebrating throughout the summer, there hasn't been alot of thought / talk about Max Talbot and the fact that he will be missing a few months (and who his replacement could be).

The Penguins webpage is posting news about training camp already and even have a camp blog up and today the big talk is that Tyler Kennedy has been skating on the second line with Malkin and Fedotenko. THIS line is quite interesting and one I would LOVE to see stick!! Although any line you put Kennedy on will always be interesting / fun to watch as far as I'm concerned, but stick Malkin in the mix and that makes things a whole lot more interesting!!

Seeing as how this is the first day of camp on the ice, things will probably be tried and shifted
even throughout the early part of the season, but I'm hoping I can catch a glimpse of this line especially since I'll be going to the first pre-season game this coming Friday (I CANNOT wait!)!!
"I'm just taking it day by day," Kennedy said. "I'm not asking questions. I'm just going out there and playing the game. When I'm on their line then I'm on their line. When I'm not, I'm not."

"(Kennedy) is a hard working guy that drives to the net hard," Fedotenko said. "He brings intensity. It's up to the coaches but I'm sure he will have his shot on the line. It's up to the coaches but I feel like Kennedy is a great player. We're excited."
And so am I!!!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

2009 - 2010 Face-Off Luncheon

New Ventures for the Pens




In case you haven't noticed, the Pen unveiled their newly remodeled webpage the other day. The site has been upgraded to feature "a bold new design, including a new-look homepage, video upgrades, increased multimedia offerings, enhanced photo galleries and more social networking features to supplement the same comprehensive coverage of Penguins hockey that fans have come to expect."

PensTV has also been redesigned for the better as well.

Also launching October 1st (which I'm REALLY excited about as I'm sure most Pens fans are) is the new Penguins HD radio channel which is dedicated to the team and NHL news and programming which will be streamed directly on the Penguins webpage (http://www.pittsburghpenguins.com/). The Pens are the FIRST in the league to offer such a HD radio channel and is a continuing partnership with the team's "flagship" radio station, "The X," 105.9 which currently broadcasts all Pens games including pre- and post-game programs. The station's main program will be "Penguins Live" that runs from 9:30 AM - 12 noon each day.
In addition to “Penguins Live,” the new HD channel also carry “NHL Live” from New York each weekday from 12 noon-2 p.m. Pittsburgh radio sports personality Mark Madden will then do one hour of exclusive Penguins and NHL-themed content from 2-3 p.m.

The daily programming will begin with the “Daily Players’ Playlist,” from 9-9:30 a.m., featuring Penguins’ players favorite songs.

The six-hour block (9 a.m-3 p.m.) will then be repeated during the day and evening.
The station is planning to debut a "preview edition" for the Pens first preseason game on September 15th from 10 AM - 12 noon.

Pens Summer Sticks Golf Tournament

The Penguins held their 22nd Annual Summer Sticks Classic Golf Tournament yesterday teeing-off at noon. The tournament took place at the Longue Vue Club in Verona, PA. The teams were comprised of three individuals who were accompanied by a Penguins player or coach and the proceeds from the tournament benefit the team's scholarship and Pen Pals programs.
“Pretty awful” were the words that Kris Letang used to describe his golf skills.

“I’m not golfing,” Letang said. “I’m just going to enjoy it and chat with the guys.”

Let's Try It Again (NEW Launch Date for Fan Huddle)!

As I previously posted, the launch date for my new online network family, FanHuddle, had been delayed due to a few unforeseen issues.

I just learned that our new launch date is set just in time for the start of the NHL season on

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 1ST!!

Broadcasts of Pens Pre-Season Games

THANKS to TSCSF reader, "akus," for pointing out to me that some of the Pens pre-season games will be broadcast this year (mainly on the NHL Network).

The September 18th home game against the Toronto Maple Leafs will be broadcast on the Leafs' Online Network - Leafs TV while three others will be featured on the NHL Network - leaving only two games that will not be aired (those against the Columbus Blue Jackets on September 15th & 24th):

SEPTEMBER 15TH vs Columbus - will not be broadcast
SEPTEMBER 18TH vs Toronto - Leafs TV
SEPTEMBER 21ST @ Montreal - RDS, TSN2, NHL Network (US)
SEPTEMBER 22ND @ Toronto - TSN, NHL Network (US)
SEPTEMBER 24TH @ Columbus - will not be broadcast
SEPTEMBER 27TH @ Detroit - NHL Network (US)


SIDENOTE: "akus" also pointed out that [2009 #1 draft pick] John Tavares' first NHL game will be on Monday, September 14th against the Vancouver Canucks which will be broadcast on the NHL Network (US and CA), VAN.com, and SNET-P.

Friday, September 11, 2009

VIDEO: Penguins Visit the White House

Video from the official White House YouTube account - The White House channel (in HD).


And Penguins talk to the media after the White House ceremony (is it me or does Orpik look particularly happy?!).

Thursday, September 10, 2009

LIVE Stream of Penguins at the White House

For those of you outside of the Pittsburgh viewing area (KDKA is to "cut in" once it's "live"), I found a LIVE STREAM of the ceremony.

FanHuddle Launch Delayed

As you can see, I'm still on Blogger even though the original launch date for FanHuddle was to be today.

Unfortunately, I was advised yesterday evening that the launch is being pushed back due to some "developmental and technical issues with the website." I am extremely disappointed as I was incredibly anxious to get started; however, it's reassuring to know that Brad and the rest of the development team are conscientious enough to make sure all the quirks and bugs are worked out prior to going "live" on the internet and are busy trying to make sure this is the best network it can AND WILL be!!!

At this point, they are unsure as to how long it will take and whether it's a minor or major setback (a few days or another month), but be certain that I will keep you well informed until then, so ...

STAY TUNED!!!

PensTV Exclusive

Yesterday, PensTV posted video of an exclusive interview Alyonka had with Evgeni Malkin talking about his summer, what it felt like to win the Stanley Cup, how he celebrated with his day with Lord Stanley and more!

TAKE A LOOK!!

Crosby and Malkin to Suit Up for Opposing Teams

September 17th is the "Black and Gold" game at the Wachovia Arena in Wilkes-Barre, PA. Tickets for this event have been sold out with the exception of a few seats available for those purchasing game plans.

Full rosters have yet to be released, but they announced that Sidney Crosby will team up with Sergei Gonchar, Jordan Staal and Kris Letang (black squad) to face Evgeni Malkin, Bill Guerin, Ruslan Fedotenko, and Marc-Andre Fleury (gold squad).

With parts of the rosters they have announced, it should prove to be quite an entertaining game especially for such a good cause (all proceeds will go to the Penguins/United Way Charity Fund).

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Next Up: ME and Stanley (Johnstown, PA)!!!


Yep, that's right!!! I FINALLY got to meet Lord Stanley up-close and personally (after missing it at the beginning of the summer when Dana Heinze brought it home!)!! I'm still buzzing from the excitement actually!!

Sunday was Penguins trainer Chris Stewart's day with the Stanley Cup and he brought it home to Johnstown, PA for a few hours at his father-in-law's house. It wasn't something that a lot of people knew about and we were lucky enough to find out because his father-in-law's house is next to Joey Dell's who John's aunt works for which is how we found out!!

It was from 9:30 AM - 11:30 AM and we were there early enough to get to see him arrive in a limo. It was a day I will NEVER forget!!!

I can now say that I touched something that has been to Nova Scotia celebrating Sid's 22nd birthday, Magnitogorsk with the Malkin's, various parts of Canada (THANKS to Chris Stewart and Aunt Margie!!)!!!



Crosby and Malkin Deliver Season Tickets

(Sidney's video is at the end of this post)

Yesterday, Sid and Geno delievered tickets to season ticket holders yesterday (which has become a clear indicator that hockey season is close in over the past few seasons)!!

For one lucky fan it was the second time she had her season tickets delivered by Sidney Crosby, but this time he brought his friend Stanley with him!!! The reason for a second visit with the Cup? She predicted that the Pens would win during the 2008-2009 season!!

Today, nine other players will be out-and-about making ticket deliveries to season ticket holders, including Fleury, Staal, Guerin, and Gonchar.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Next Up: Trainer Scott Adams in Windsor & David Morehouse in Beechview

On Friday, Lord Stanley spent the day in Windsor with Penguins trainer, Scott Adams.

And yesterday, Penguins President David Morehouse showed off the Cup to his childhood buddies at a playground in Beechview.
"I felt very fortunate to be in the position I was, in center ice with the Stanley Cup," Morehouse said, "and one of the first things I thought about was to bring this back to where I shaped my life."

Wild May Make Sykora an Offer

New Wild GM Chuck Fletcher spent some time with former Penguins forward Petr Sykora, so learning that he's considering making him an offer to play for Minnesota isn't all that surprising.

Prior to being named GM for the Wild this past May, Fletcher was the assistant GM to Ray Shero in Pittsburgh since July 2006. He was also part of the Anaheim organization for four years in various positions such as director of hockey operations, assistant GM, and vice president of amateur scouting and player development. Sykora was part of both organizations during part of Fletcher's time with each of them, so he has become familiar with the kind of player Sykora is.

According to the Minnesota newspaper, StarTribune.com, Fletcher has yet to make an offer because he's debating the following:

1) Sykora's skating is his biggest weakness. In new coach Todd Richards' up-tempo system, Fletcher has been hesitant to add Sykora to a top nine that already has veterans Andrew Brunette and Owen Nolan, who aren't the fastest skaters.

2) Fletcher is still convinced that if he waits a little longer, teams with salary cap problems will trim players via trade or waivers. The Wild has between $2.4 million and $3.5 million of salary cap space (depending on who makes the team), so signing Sykora could inhibit Fletcher's ability to do something later.

Hockey is for Everyone Clinic

[UPDATE]

THANKS to TSCSF commentor, wim, for the following explanation:

This event is for both the Friends of Fort Dupont(FFD) hockey kids and Fort Dupont Hockey Club, two distinct organizations tat play at Fort Dupont. The FFD kids are part of an overall Kids On Ice program of the rink that has 10,000 kids in its free programs. Fort Dupont Hockey Club simply rents ice at adiscounted rate from the rink.

Prior to the White House ceremony next Thursday evening, some of the Pittsburgh Penguins will be having some fun while helping the NHL partner with "United We Serve, "President Obama's call to service challenging all Americans to engage in sustained, meaningful service to meet growing social needs."

Sidney Crosby, Marc-Andre Fleury, Bill Guerin, Evgeni Malkin, Brooks Orpik, and Jordan Staal will be participating in a hockey clinic with Pittsburgh's Hockey in the Hood and DC's Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club at the Fort Dupont Ice Arena which is "the only public indoor ice arena located in Washington, DC, and the only skating facility in the area that provides free or subsidized skating and hockey programs to children."

Others who will be present / involved in the clinic are the Ambassador of Hockey is for Everyone, Willie O’Ree, and the Friends of Fort Dupont Kids on Ice Program.

Thursday, September 10, 2009, 1:30 PM

Fort Dupont Ice Arena
3779 Ely Place, SE
Washington, DC 20019

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Official White House Press Release (President to Honor Penguins)

THE WHITE HOUSE

Office of the Press Secretary
___________________________________________________________________________
For Immediate Release September 4, 2009


WASHINGTON — On Thursday, September 10, President Obama will welcome the Pittsburgh Penguins to the White House to honor them for their 2009 Stanley Cup championship victory.

THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 10, 6:00 PM

Pre-set and final gather times will be announced next week

Media Coverage: Media wishing to cover this event that do not have a White House Hard Pass must RSVP to media_affairs@who.eop.gov by 5 pm Wednesday, September 9th. The event is open press, but space is limited. Members of the Pittsburgh Penguins will hold a brief media availability in the West Wing stakeout area following the event.

Friday, September 4, 2009

White House Visit Confirmed


















The Penguins webpage made the official announcement today that President Obama has invited them to the White House for a special ceremony honoring them on Thursday, September 10th.

Sykora A Senator?

According to the Toronto SUN, the Ottawa Senators have been in talks with Petr Sykora "and he's at the top of the Senators' radar screen if they can trade disgruntled winger Dany Heatley before training camp."

Talbot Prefers Montreal Women

Although I do not speak French, I translated the page this video came from (Hockey30.com) which said, "Video: Max Talbot and women" and "Our partners Montreal.tv interviewed Maxim Talbot. We learn interesting things: Talbot prefer women in Montreal!"

See for yourself!


As my own sidenote, not only does Max get a strike for admitting that he prefers Montreal women (does he think we won't find out?!), but he gets another strike for that sweater / vest!!! Does he get dressed in the dark during off-season or is that how they like their men to dress in Montreal (in that case, the women of Montreal can HAVE him!)??? : P

ALL IN GOOD FUN!!! : )

2009 Penguins Training Camp Roster

LGP.com has compiled this AWESOME roster for the upcoming Penguins training camp (September 12th) with LOADS of team / player information. VISIT LGP.com to view the roster!!

Speaking of training camp, the Penguins announced that their Prospect Camp will be held in Kitchener, ONT beginning this weekend on Saturday and runs through Thursday, September 10th. If you happen to be in the area, CLICK HERE for more information at "The Aud" webpage (Kitchener's Memorial Auditorium Complex) where the Rookie Tournament will be held.

Penguins to Visit the White House

I know I mentioned this already in a post before (with Malkin's interview), but I still haven't been able to confirm anything on it. Word is that President Obama has invited them to the White House this upcoming Wednesday, September 9th.

There have been several news sites (WPXI, KDKA) and who have also made note of the Malkin interview and haven't been able to confirm it either. I've been watching the White House webpage, but nothing yet -- you know I'll have it here once it's confirmed!!

STAY TUNED!!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Boucher Announces Retirement

Penguins defenseman Philippe Boucher announced his retirement today according to TSN.
"I have always admired athletes that have retired as champions and I am humbled to have the chance to count myself among them," said Boucher. "I would like to take this opportunity to thank my teammates, my coaches and the organizations I played with over the years. I am going to miss being with the boys."
Boucher was one of those players who wasn't fully appreciated. I liked him and felt he deserved more credit for the role he played on the team both on and off the ice. However, he was able to obtain what had eluded him for 17 seasons - the coveted Stanley Cup. Regardless of all that, he did appreciate Pittsburgh (all hockey) fans and said so today as he announced his retirement.
"I would also like to recognize the best fans in all of sports. I never took for granted what a privilege it is to play this game and how important the fans are," added Boucher.
I'm guessing this fairs well for Ben Lovejoy who I would love to see up here with the big boys!!

Malkin Addresses Fans at the Metallurg Game

PSAMP posted this video he found on YouTube and had his buddy (usbzoso) translate part of the speech (under the video). PSAMP also notes how there were mixed responses from the crowd since some of them haven't gotten over how Malkin left Russia to play for the Pens.

"First of all I'd like to thank my parents, my mom and my dad. They have always believed and supported me. I'd also like to thank my first coach. He also always believed in me, he put his love and soul into training me. Of course I also want to thank Magnitogorsk Metallurgical Kombinat. Thank you very much for this sports complex. Thank you for the 2 best ice rinks in Russia, in my opinion, that have raised a lot of good players, and will raise future stars. It doesn't matter where we play, we always represent Magnitogork and Metallurg, the team I played for and colors I defended. Any trophy won by me or any other player will be brought to this city of Magnitogork.

(Some applause some boos in the crowd)

I would also like to thank all of the fans out there. Thank all of you that came here today. All those that were cheering for our team... (pause, as if he wanted to say Penguins) ...Metallurg. I want to wish Metallurg many many wins and winning gold in the next season. Thank you."

[MORE of] Geno and the Cup!!

The post title made me think of "Chico and the Man" (am I dating myself??!) for some odd reason, but anyway --

THANKS to Stan Livshin (twitter = usbzoso), we have some awesome videos and pics of Malkin on his day with the Cup!!







You know what I find odd??? That Oksana didn't show up in any of these pictures / videos. Could there be trouble in paradise?