Following their Saturday practice, the Penguins players, coaches, staff and fathers will embark on the fourth annual "Dad's Trip." The Dad's Trip has become a tradition in the Penguins organization with the arrival of general manager Ray Shero.
The fathers of Penguins' players, coaches and staff will join the team on their road trip to Philadelphia and New York City. It's a chance for some father-son bonding as the dads will spend time with their sons and attend Pittsburgh's contests against the Flyers and NY Rangers.
To kick off the "Dad's Trip" all the fathers were invited to take a tour of the Consol Energy Center, slated to open for the start of the 2010-11 campaign. Here are some of the sights they saw:
Sounds heard around the locker room:Dan BylsmaOpening:
We have just sent out a release re-assigning John Curry to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, which would indicate that Flower (Marc-Andre Fleury
) is willing, able and capable.On whether Fleury will start against the Flyers:
He obviously hasn’t had a ton of practice time lately and he’s adjusting. But he took a lot of shots yesterday and a full practice today, so I would say that he’s ready to start.On if he has any concerns with Dupuis being able to play:
Nope. He took and completed and passed all of the tests that he needed to take – both from a structural and head standpoint before the last game. Just with his eye – they way it looked and where he was at – we took the precaution to not throw him back into a game. He practiced yesterday and again today, so he’s been very good.On comparing the Washington and Philadelphia rivalries:
I think the Philly rivalry is different in that no matter where the teams are at, no matter what their records are, no matter what year it is, there is going to be a confrontation. There’s going to be a storyline, and there’s past history. There is certainly one with Washington. It is certainly different than a game against the Colorado Avalanche. I don’t think it’s quite to the depth that the Philly one is. Washington’s been very good for the last couple of years. There’s playoff history obviously with last season – (Alex) Ovechkin and Crosby. If you go back four years ago, I don’t think you saw the same excitement in the building with Washington. Now, there is, but I don’t think it’s the same depth that the former always seems to have regardless of the situation.On maintaining the level of emotion in Thursday night’s game against the Capitals in Sunday’s game against the Flyers:
I think it’s great this time of year. We need to get better in small areas, bring attention to our game, bring that level that a rivalry brings. If we could have the next 10 in a row be rivalry games going into the break, then that would be better for us. Sidney CrosbyOn being aware of players on the Flyers stirring things up:
They can play a hard-nosed game. You have to play hard against them but you can’t get preoccupied or too caught up in that stuff either.On if a bigger rivalry exists between the Penguins and Philadelphia as opposed to the Penguins and Washington:
We’ve played Philly a little bit more, so I would say yes, especially with the playoffs, and we play them more during the season. The rivalry’s gone probably longer than a lot of us have been here, too. I’m sure it’s the same with Washington. I think Philadelphia’s a little bit bigger. On the differences between playing with the two teams:
I would say it’s a little nastier with Philadelphia. I think it’s pretty obvious, but both have developed into some pretty intense games. It’s a good test for us coming off Washington. It’s going to be another emotional game and we’ve got to make sure that we’re able to step up again for that.On if he thinks he will have to play more aggressively on Sunday against the Flyers:
No. I don’t really go into games thinking about dropping my gloves or anything, so I think it’s important for us that we stay away from that stuff. If we have to defend our teammates, it’s something we can do. But, we’re there to play hockey and win games. We’ll be physical and use our toughness when needed, but I don’t think that’s something that we’re going to look for.On facing the Philadelphia fans:
We’ve gotten used to that. We’ve played there a lot over the years in big playoff games, emotional games. I think we’ve played some really good hockey there, so I think our confidence is there when we play there. We know what to expect. We go in there with a pretty focused mindset.On foreseeing a situation where someone would come after him as the team’s star player without someone else jumping in:
It happens. It’s happened before. There’s not much you can do sometimes. Sometimes you get in scrums like that. You kind of put yourself in that position. When your gloves are dropped, it’s pretty much the message that you’re going to fight and you’ve got to be ready for that. I think it’s a much different scenario if one drops his gloves and the other guy doesn’t. Then you’re talking about something totally different.
Mark EatonOn getting back on the ice quickly after the Washington game:
I think that one good part of the schedule we have had with the games being close together is we haven’t had too long to sit on a loss. Especially when you are always chomping at the bit to get back out there as soon as you can.On always seeming to have somebody injured:
I think that is the way the game is. I think if you look at any team, very rarely is a team 100 percent healthy all the time. It’s about depth and it’s about guys stepping up and filling in where needed. All we care about is being close to 100 percent healthy for the playoffs.On these games feeling like playoff games:
I think our schedule from here to the break is mostly playoff teams and they are going to be playoff-style games, especially against Washington and Philly – two of our biggest rivals. They are usually emotionally high-strung games and physical as well. They usually play out like that.On who the Penguins biggest rival is – Washington or Philadelphia:
Philly is more the long-term rivalry that has always been there. They are our cross-state rivals whereas Washington is more of a last few years kind of rivalry. They are both intense in their own rights. They are both equally as huge.On keeping the emotional level high against Philadelphia after playing Washington:
No question. You never have any problem getting up for any game against Philly. Especially after a game like Thursday where you are already kind of up there. We had a playoff style game and we look forward to it tomorrow.
1:47 PM:Marc-Andre Fleury
practiced with his teammates on Saturday for the first time since injuring his left ring finger during the Penguins' 3-2 victory against the Edmonton Oilers on Jan. 14. He wore a new catching glove which provides extra padding for the finger.
“I feel pretty good,” he said. “I have the new plastic piece on my finger so that helps it out. Sometimes it hurts a little bit, but it’s not that bad.”
Fleury said that the glove felt a bit awkward at first since he did not have many shots thrown into it, but now he said that it feels comfortable. Now Fleury is just waiting to see if head coach Dan Bylsma will give him the go-ahead to start on Sunday against the Philadelphia Flyers.
“He obviously hasn’t had a ton of practice time lately, and he’s adjusting,” said Bylsma. “But, he took a lot of shots yesterday and a full practice today, so I would say that he’s ready to start.”
Fleury said his finger will take four to six weeks to heal completely. While this is his first experience with a broken finger, he has dealt with broken bones before.
“One time I broke my knuckle,” he said. “I had a cast on that, so it was nothing like this.”
The Penguins announced after practice this morning that John Curry was sent back
Here are pictures of Marc-Andre Fleury
and Pascal Dupuis
at practice on Saturday at Mellon Arena:
Goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury
attended his first practice with his new glove this morning. Fleury fractured his left ring finger during the Penguins' 3-2 victory against the Edmonton Oilers on Jan. 14.
Forward Pascal Dupuis
is practicing for the first time suffering an ugly head injury in Pittsburgh's 6-4 victory over the NY Islanders on Jan. 19. Late in the third period Dupuis was check from behind by Islanders defenseman Andy Sutton and smashed face-first into the boards. Dupuis missed the Penguins' Thursday game against Washington.
Sutton recieved a two-game suspension for the hit.
Maxime Talbot is the first player on the ice this morning at the Penguins' Saturday practice. Talbot is day-to-day with a lower-body injury. He suffered the injury on Jan. 19 against the New York Islanders.