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Bylsma on Crosby, Malkin and Jagr

by Staff Writer / Pittsburgh Penguins
Penguins head coach Dan Bylsma met with the Pittsburgh media Monday afternoon. Among the topics were his winning the Jack Adams Award, NHL realignment, the status of Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin and the possible signing of Jaromir Jagr.

Here are some quick quotes from Bylsma:

Bylsma on Crosby:
Bylsma at the podium.
“He came back to Pittsburgh after a hiatus or vacation with some of his teammates. The doctors here cleared him to go home and work out as he normally would be working out. He’s been working out two times a day and progressing along his normal road of summer activity. That’s what Sid has been doing. He’s got another two and a half months ahead of doing that.”

Bylsma on Malkin:
"Geno is doing very well. His rehab was going extremely well when he was here in Pittsburgh. He really believed – and was trying to convince everyone involved – that he was going to be coming back as soon as possible to play in the playoffs if we could have moved on (to the next round). He was progressing to the point where that was actually a real possibility. He was really doing very well strength-wise and he was ahead of schedule in terms of what the doctors could do with his rehab. We have heard through Sergei Gonchar, actually, that he’s never seen Geno working this hard and looking this good and this motivated at this time of the summer. So I expect a real motivated, a real focused guy and a guy who is ready to go for training camp – is probably already ready to go. I think he’ll be at full go coming into training camp and really motivated."

Bylsma on Jagr:
“I’ve been on record a few times with the media about what the attributes of Jaromir Jagr are still really good. I think (a reporter) used the word ‘hypothetical,’ and we’ve kind of run with that word. There are things that I think he could add to our team.

“In terms of where he fits in structurally, contract-wise, that’s another issue as well. Those are all things that are part of that equation and that we’ve talked about and will continue to talk about over the next few days.

Bylsma on Jagr fitting in the Penguins system:
If Jaromir Jagr hypothetically were to fit in, I don’t think we’d have to change everything drastically for him to able to fit in. If you watched Jaromir play in the World Championships, his play down low is outstanding. We’re a team that wants to play in the offensive zone. There’s a speed part to our game, but it really lies largely in playing in the offensive zone and wearing teams down. I don’t think he has missed much of a beat in that regard to his game. Hypothetically speaking, that’s where I see him fitting in.

Bylsma on improving the power play:
"I don’t know what the roster is going to look like yet, but I’ve already run scenarios with a bunch of different people available. I think we’re going to have different looks. I think we’re going to look differently at different times. I think we’re going to be able to do that within a game.

"Some of the things I think we haven’t been good at with our power play in the past is that we’ve been stationary and predictable. If we had different looks, we would achieve being unpredictable and not being in the same spots. So you can be in similar spots and be stationary, but by moving around from game to game, team to team, period to period, you could conceivably erase some of those things that we haven’t done well."

Bylsma on changing the power play breakout:
"I also think in terms of personnel and getting the right people out there and utilizing what we’ve got, we’re looking heavily to play four forwards. That won’t be the case every time. Every set won’t have four forwards. But I think that’s something that you’ll see happen much differently. Also, a thing that we’ve done homework on and looked at is having different players carry the puck up the ice. Typically with Gonchar, he carried the puck up the ice and distributed to (Malkin and Crosby). That’s a pretty standard way of operating for most teams. But if you have (Malkin) and (Crosby), they’re our best players at carrying the puck up the ice and they need to be carrying the puck up the ice. We have to put them in situations to have that happen more to help us out in that regard. So those are some of the things that we have worked on. We have set up the parts, the people, the personnel are interchanging based on the setups and who may or may not be out on the ice at that given time."

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