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Penguins Report: Practice 11/8/10

by Sam Kasan / Pittsburgh Penguins


8:08 PM:
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1:59 PM:
The Penguins also hosted an amateur hockey team, the Arctic Foxes (9 to 10 years old), for practice at Southpointe. Mark Letestu and Deryk Engelland joined the squirts on the ice.

Engelland (right)


1:53 PM:
Maxime Talbot and eight teammates (Letang, Kennedy, Rupp, Goligoski, Godard, Cooke, Dupuis, Fleury) took some time after practice for some charity work. Talbot ordered white shoes, that the players then painted. The shoes will be auctioned off Nov. 18 through Talbot's new charity organization, the Max Talbot Foundation. Proceeds from the shoes will be used to help build an orphanage in Haiti - something Talbot and Rupp have been working toward since visiting the country in August.

Check back later for an in-depth report and more photos. Here is a sneak peak.


1:45 PM:
Coachspeak with Dan Bylsma…

On how he decides the workload for his goaltenders
There’s not a formula that I can point to and show you. We certainly had a plan and we wanted to get the goaltenders a certain number of games. Flower didn’t start well in that game and I took him out. Brent came in and held the fort for us and played well again after his game in Dallas. Some of it’s going to have to be who’s going to get us going and play a good game for us but still keeping in mind that we want to get the appropriate amount of work to get to his rhythm and get his game.

On the defensive zone coverage in practice:
We’re just evaluating where we’re at. We had a couple things in the next two days that we wanted to get to. But there were other aspects of it offensively that we were working on as well. It wasn’t just defensively, but offensively, starting to get some of the zone time that we needed to get the last two games. And we need to get the puck to the paint a little bit more, especially by some of our bigger guys. We have to get into that area, and we can take a note or lesson from Sid. He works great down there and behind the goal line when he gets it out to the front of the net. And it’s dangerous once we get that puck to the blue paint with the guys we have in front of the net. When we get it in there we create havoc for the opposition.

On hoping to get Marc-Andre Fleury a string of wins:
I don’t think there’s a lot of hoping in the direction that we’re taking. He’s got to get better, but he’s got to get to his game. It comes from practice and focus and it comes from our team and our attitude when we play the game. I think our team feels that way as well. We got behind the last two games and we had to fight to come back and we got the win in Phoenix. But that doesn’t mean we’re where we need to be. We need to look at this next stretch of games here, these three games coming up in four nights where we have a chance to put some wins together.

On Marc-Andre Fleury’s game
I think that what type of goalie we have and the quality and the effort that he’s putting in is he’s working really hard on his game, but going out with the mindset and sticking to his game and his foundation when he’s out there is a big thing for Marc. Even in practice, he’s got to confident in the mindset that his ability and what he does as a goaltender is going to get him through this.

On how Fleury can find confidence
The conversation about what confidence is is a long one. Does he understand confidence? Well, he understands that he doesn’t have it right now. But it’s a long conversation about what confidence is.

Assist: Tony Jovenitti

1:38 PM:
Sounds heard around the locker room...

Sidney Crosby

On going through tough stretches:
It’s normal. Nobody likes to lose, and we don’t either. You’re not going to win 82 games every year and you’re going to have tough points. Hopefully we’ve got our tough point over with.

On frustration:
Frustration’s not a terrible thing, because usually that means people care. That’s kind of typical to be frustrated when you care and something doesn’t go the way you want it to. Yeah, we’ve had it tough over the last five or six games, but there’s a lot of seasons that go with tough stints like that. I can look back at the last five and tell you a couple different times where we had tough stints.

On tough stretches like this happening to everybody:
Yeah, but it doesn’t mean that you accept it. You’re not shocked when you go through it and you want to get out of it. But it’s an 82-game schedule and you’re going to run into those points. But the worst thing you can do is feel sorry for yourself or give up and let frustration kind of take over. You just have to work harder and make sure things are better. We got a big win in Phoenix and we want to build off it.

On Marc-Andre Fleury:
I think he’s dealing with (problems) okay. It’s not easy. It’s going to be tough. But to sit here and say that he’s not frustrated – he probably is. I have times where I don’t score and I’m going to be frustrated to. But unfortunately for a goalie, the goalie’s always the center of attention more than anyone, so there’s always a lot of pressure that comes with that. And he’s more than capable to deal with it. He’s mentally strong. But you have to be patient to. He’s going to have good games, and it’s not like he can change it overnight. I’m sure he wants it more than anyone and he’ll do whatever it takes.

Pascal Dupuis

On playing hungry in the third period during the past few games:
Obviously we want to start the games better than that, but the way we kept playing and kept going at it was a good sign. I guess we just have to start games better and we’ll be just fine.

On some positives from the road trip:
The feeling we had and the emotion we had just felt right. It just felt like yes, we were coming back—even in Anaheim, even though we didn’t come back and win the game. We just had the feeling like we were still in the game and guys didn’t put their head down, we just kept working.

On Mark Letestu’s first shootout attempt and goal:
He called it on the bench. He said “I have one move on the shootout, it’s going five hole,” and he made it.

Assist: Tony Jovenitti

12:52 PM:
Head coach Dan Bylsma gave updates for goalie Brent Johnson, who did not practice, and forward Evgeni Malkin, who left practice early.

"Brent was sick and 'Geno' has nothing different than he's had for the last week," Bylsma said. He added about Malkin, "He had some discomfort on the ice so we took the opportunity to rest it."

12:04 PM:
Evgeni Malkin left the ice about 20 minutes ago. We'll get an update from Bylsma on his status.

11:29 AM:


11:24 AM:
Goaltender Brent Johnson, who has been a workhorse lately for the Penguins, is not on the ice for practice. We'll get an update from coach Bylsma after practice.

11:02 AM:
The Penguins are on the ice at Southpointe for practice. The team was given Sunday off after a taxing three-game, four-day, three-time zone road trip, which concluded with a dramatic come-from-behind 4-3 shootout victory at Phoenix.

Mark Letestu was the hero of that game with a nifty winning shootout goal.
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