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Pittsburgh Penguins’ 7-Game Winning Streak

Pittsburgh Penguins' Winning Streak

To put it bluntly, the Pittsburgh Penguins are on fire right now. They have been firing on all cylinders, and it shows. Not only are they on a seven-game winning streak, but they’ve outscored their opponents 22 goals to nine. Not only is the offense showing signs of drastic improvement, but the defense and the goaltending seem to have improved as well.

The Offense

The offense has certainly had its ups and downs throughout this season so far. They had to start off without Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, Pittsburgh’s top two centers. Then, in classic Penguins fashion, they’ve had to deal with injury after injury, COVID case after COVID case. It seemed like there was no respite, but then the offense started to click.

Pittsburgh Penguins' Winning Streak


Image Courtesy of Andy Marlin Getty Images

Kasperi Kapanen and Evan Rodrigues deserve the highest of praises for their performance. Rodrigues is clearly having a breakout year as he’s been lighting the lamp and setting up his teammates. Kapanen has certainly been one of the more entertaining players to watch as he flies around the ice with the utmost urgency.

Another notable player has been Jeff Carter. Since the Penguins acquired him April 12 from the Los Angeles Kings, he’s been scoring goals nonstop, quickly becoming a fan-favorite in Pittsburgh. Lastly, the Teddy Blueger, Brock McGinn and Zach Aston-Reese line deserves mention. Not only have they provided consistent offense, but it’s because of these three that the Penguins have the No. 1 penalty-killing unit in the entire NHL.

The Defense

Just like the offense, the defense has had its ups and downs. For right now, they are definitely on the upside of things. They seem to be heavily contributing to the offensive play as well as preventing shots from reaching the goalie. The defense cannot be mentioned without saying something about their biggest asset so far this year, Kris Letang.

Pittsburgh Penguins' Winning Streak
Image Courtesy of Pittsburgh Penguins

Letang has always been one of the more solid producers on Pittsburgh’s roster, but it seems that this year he’s kicked it into high gear. With 20 points in 26 games, this is one of the best offensive years he’s had in the past few years. It couldn’t have come at a better time, too. He has provided much-needed leadership to a team whose leaders were all injured or out of the lineup.

Marcus Pettersson has also had quite the bounce-back year. After a questionable performance last season, he desperately needed to prove to the organization that he should stay on board. So far, he’s played fairly solid shut-down defense as he has a +/- rating of +9. This means that he’s doing a great job at preventing goals.

The Goaltending

In the event that a shot sneaks past the defense, it’s safe to say that the Penguins have some reliable talent in the net to stop it. Tristan Jarry has been silencing any and all doubters this season with what could arguably become a Vezina-caliber year. Of course, the season is still young, but if he keeps playing like he has, he could be a valid candidate.

Pittsburgh Penguins' Winning Streak
Image Courtesy of Andy Marlin/Getty Images

Jarry has put up a 1.93 goals against average and .932 save percentage, which is certainly not nothing. He also has three shutouts, but that number is bound to rise. As a backup, Casey DeSmith has also proven to be fairly valuable to the team. He has put up a .905 save percentage and a 3.03 goals-against average. Those aren’t the best numbers, but they’re still fairly respectable. To have two reliable goalies in net is rare, but the Penguins are lucky to have them.

Pittsburgh is simply on fire as of right now. The offense is scoring goals seemingly at will, the defense is contributing to the offense as well as preventing the opposition from scoring and the goalies are performing at an amazing level. This seven-game winning streak could turn into eight, then maybe even nine. At this rate, it wouldn’t be too surprising.

 

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