Skip to main content
The Official Site of the Pittsburgh Penguins

Penguins Report: Practice 5/18/13

by Staff Writer / Pittsburgh Penguins

Sam Kasan has the latest from Ottawa as Jason Spezza says he is ready to go for Game 3...

--Michelle Crechiolo


Jason Spezza

Coach Bylsma

Sidney Crosby

Pascal Dupuis

Kris Letang

--Michelle Crechiolo

When the guys were waiting for their equipment to get to the arena after they arrived there this afternoon, they passed the time by playing a game invented by assistant equipment manager Danny “Banker” Kroll. All it is is trying to get a roll of hockey tape to land onto a hook hanging from the ceiling of the visitors locker room hallway – like horseshoes, in a sense.

Robert Bortuzzo (he of the alley-oop dunk on the 76ers court in Philadelphia) was the first one to do it, and Sidney Crosby managed to do it as well. After that, though, the rest of the guys weren’t so lucky – especially Brandon Sutter. Poor Suttsy tried for a long time to no avail. So he then took a break, changed into his workout clothes and then came back out but still couldn’t get the roll of tape to land on the hook.

The best part was when about 5-10 guys plus coach Bylsma were all gunning for the hook at once in a big crowd. Rolls of tape were flying everywhere. Quite a scene.

Once all of their equipment arrived, the game was over. But they sure found an interesting way to occupy themselves while they waited. Gotta love it.

--Michelle Crechiolo

The Pens that did not skate still worked out...

Right before this, Matt Niskanen was doing pushups on the medicine ball

Jarome Iginla may seriously be the nicest man on the planet

When Douglas Murray wants to join the soccer game, you do not refuse him

Same goes for Evgeni Malkin

The guys are chirping Bortuzzo here

Cooke points to where he wants Sid to pass the soccer ball

Coach Bylsma surrounded by media

--Michelle Crechiolo & Sam Kasan

It's official. The Senators anticipate the return of Jason Spezza in Game 3 Sunday night in Ottawa. Also, they're going back to Craig Anderson in goal.

Spezza's return is a game-changer, but is it a series-changer? I don't think so, but I could be wrong. There's no way of knowing how well he'll play after being out of the linup for 3 1/2 months. I'm sure he'll do well in Game 3 off the adrenaline alone. But after that he may struggle with timing and conditioning.

Jason Spezza on the ice

--Sam Kasan


Looks like Malkin stole Neal's hoodie

Bennett takes a drink break

--Michelle Crechiolo & Sam Kasan


--Sam Kasan & Michelle Crechiolo

The Penguins held an optional practice once they arrived at Scotiabank Place (the team came here straight from the airport). Participating were Jokinen, Glass, Bennett, Jeffrey, Eaton, Despres, Bortuzzo, Vokoun and Fleury. Malkin was also on the ice, but he was working out in sweats while the rest of his teammates were in full gear.

--Michelle Crechiolo

Sens forward Jason Spezza practiced with his teammates at Scotiabank Place. He's been out of the lineup since having back surgery in February. He began skating recently and was at the team's practice prior to their departure for Pittsburgh. Spezza did not travel to Pittsburgh.

--Sam Kasan

Travel time. Michelle got to the plane early so she could capture the guys are they arrived...

Iginla pulls off the all black look

Vitale's thinking "I know you ain't takin' my picture..."

Orpik's stare is weakened by the sun

Sutter looking suave

Neal and a wide-smiling Dupuis

The Captain ascends the stairs

Paulie in purple

Malkin leads the way for Murray and Morrow

Malkin's "blue steel"

Morrow and Murray share a laugh

--Michelle Crechiolo & Sam Kasan

Here's a look back at our coverage of Friday night's 4-3 Game 2 victory for the Pens. We'll start with the big story of the night, which was Sidney Crosby's second career playoff hat trick (and first one at home).

Crosby's Trick
Crosby proceeded to slither through a tiny sliver of space between an approaching Jakob Silfverberg and the boards before coming up to his next obstacle in Erik Karlsson. Crosby then made the defending Norris Trophy winner look like a pylon as he deftly stepped around him and drove to the goal.

Crosby finished by outracing Mika Zibanejad to the net and beating arguably the league’s best goalie this season in Craig Anderson through the five-hole to open the scoring in the first period of Friday’s Game 2 of Pittsburgh’s Eastern Conference semifinal series against the Ottawa Senators at CONSOL Energy Center.

Just another epic, jaw dropping, goosebumps-inducing play from the 25-year-old superstar, exactly 22 years after Mario Lemieux split North Stars defensemen Shawn Chambers and Neil Wilkinson before deking around Jon Casey on this day in 1991 for the greatest goal in Penguins history. How fitting.

Full story here.

(Getty Images)

Analysis: Pens Go to Work
The packed house of 18,645 – and that’s not including the thousands that gathered outside the arena to watch Mario’s Big Screen – stood, screamed and showed their overwhelming approval as the clock ticked and ticked and ticked to a 4-3 Penguins’ victory and 2-0 series lead.

The offensive zone shift was orchestrated by several Penguins, including Brandon Sutter, Pascal Dupuis, Craig Adams, Crosby, Matt Cooke, Chris Kunitz, Brooks Orpik and Kris Letang.

“We had two of our better shifts from Sutter, Dupuis and Morrow, probably our best shift of the game playing in the offensive zone,” head coach Dan Bylsma. “Really denied them of the opportunity to get any kind of offense going in the last five minutes.

“You saw the crowd respond to that as well.”

Full story here.

(Getty Images)

--Sam Kasan

Good afternoon from Ottawa! The Pens boarded an 11 a.m. flight destined for Canada's capital city Saturday. They'll hit the ice at Scotiabank Place at 2 p.m. for practice. Stay tuned for all the latest news, coverage and behind-the-scenes action right here...


Before we move forward with the day, let's take one last look at Friday's Game 2 highlights.


--Sam Kasan

View More