Everyone knows that Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and when he returns James Neal will put up points and do so in bunches. But a true testament to a team’s skill isn’t based on their top-end talent but rather their depth scoring.
Teams who can survive scoring slumps from their stars are the ones who make it the deepest in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Crosby is off to his usual start, and the chemistry that he has shown with his linemates has seen them score a combined ten points so far this season, tops of any of the four lines.
So while that is one of the reasons that the Pittsburgh Penguins are 3-1 this season, the actual reason for their good start is the scoring balance up and down the lines, as broken down here.
Line 1 – 4 Goals, 6 Assists – 10 points
Line 2 – 4 Goals, 4 Assists – 8 points
Line 3 – 2 Goals, 2 Assists – 4 points
Line 4 – 4 Goals, 4 Assists – 8 points
That’s about as spread out you can be with the scoring. In fact, only Dustin Jeffrey has yet to register a point, with him ringing one off of the post in the game against the Florida Panthers, his best opportunity to date.
Not known much for their scoring, each of the fourth liners have multiple points, and Craig Adams is tied for the team lead in goals so far with three. Tanner Glass scored two points in 48-regular season games last year, and he has already passed his mark from last year with a goal and two assists.
It still early in the season so don’t expect the fourth line to keep pace with Malkin himself, let alone his entire line, but getting early season success like they are getting will only help build them up for the rest of the season.