Penguins show no signs of panic, lineup changes

Monday, 06.03.2013 / 1:04 PM | Chris Adamski  - Correspondent

PITTSBURGH -- Throughout the Pittsburgh Penguins' dressing room, a common theme was repeated: Stay the course, play the way we did over the first two periods of Game 1, things will be OK.

Be it a subtle message to his players along those lines or a simple evaluation leading to the same result, coach Dan Bylsma appears to agree when it comes to the personnel.

Judging by the line combinations and defense pairings during the morning skate, Pittsburgh will go with the same lineup it used for Saturday's Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Final when it takes the ice for Game 2 against the Boston Bruins 8 p.m. Monday at Consol Energy Center.

"I don't think our mindset changes; I think we want more of the same," veteran forward Craig Adams said. "There's just some things we can do better, and we'll try to do those better."

The only minor adjustment the Penguins showed Monday morning was swapping Brenden Morrow and Tyler Kennedy to the third and fourth lines, respectively. Morrow would play the left wing, moving Matt Cooke to the right side of center Brandon Sutter on the third line. Kennedy bumps Adams from the right wing to the left side of center Jussi Jokinen.

But that is a format the Penguins often used down the stretch of the regular season and throughout the playoffs. Kennedy's strong recent play had merely earned him a temporary promotion.

The fact the Penguins are making no apparent significant changes or adjustments after what was their second loss in their past eight games advances the mentality their players and coaches are advancing that they played well enough during Game 1 to win.

"Just keep doing our own thing," wing James Neal said. "I think we had some good chances. We had some good looks that we didn't quite hit the net on or get it where we wanted it -- but they're there. We've got to capitalize on those opportunities -- a few posts, a couple tough bounces. If those go the other way, it's definitely a different game."

The Penguins expressed very similar sentiments after their previous defeat, 2-1 at the Ottawa Senators in Game 3 of the conference semifinals.

In their next game, Pittsburgh routed Ottawa, 7-3.

"We didn't feel like we were out of (Saturday's) game," defenseman Kris Letang said. "We played a pretty solid first 30 minutes; we had quality chances that if they would have gone the other way it would have been a different game.

"But that's hockey -- it's part of the game... If it would have been a back-to-back situation, we would have been just fine. We're going to just keep going."

Chris KunitzSidney Crosby - Pascal Dupuis

Jarome Iginla - Evgeni MalkinJames Neal

Brenden Morrow - Brandon Sutter - Matt Cooke

Craig Adams - Jussi Jokinen - Tyler Kennedy

Mark Eaton - Kris Letang

Brooks Orpik - Paul Martin

Douglas MurrayMatt Niskanen

Tomas Vokoun

Marc-Andre Fleury

Scratched: Beau Bennett, Robert Bortuzzo, Simon Despres, Deryk Engelland, Tanner Glass, Eric Hartzell, Dustin Jeffrey, Joe Vitale

Injured: None

Back to top