When you think of scary things, there can be many things that come to mind. Maybe some of you are scared of spiders or bees. Others may be scared of zombies or vampires (that don’t sparkle, of course.).
Many teams in the NHL, especially in the Eastern Conference, are afraid of a monster. That would be a two-headed monster. These are two players for the Pittsburgh Penguins – Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin.
For most of the season, the Penguins have not had most of their top offensive weapons available to them due to injuries or suspensions. Now, the Penguins are only missing forward Pascal Dupuis and are looking to take the Eastern Conference by storm.
It is crazy to think that the Pittsburgh Penguins have only won one Stanley Cup during the Malkin/Crosby era. The team is set to make another run this season, and it is their offense again that is looking to lead the way.
The Penguins’ split-up their two-headed monster onto two lines. On line 1A is Crosby, followed by Chris Kunitz and a fill in until they find a replacement for Dupuis. Kunitz and Crobsy have been tearing apart defenses since 2009; these two players just seem to fit together better than any puzzle you could ever find.
The Penguins’ “second line” is definitely not your typical second line. When your second line is made up of Malkin, James Neal and Jussi Jokinen, no team can just put their first defensive pairing against the top line. When Malkin and Neal get onto the ice together, something magically happens. Since joining the Penguins, James Neal has become one of the best snipers in all of the NHL. This only makes the play of Malkin that much better.
The Pittsburgh Penguins have been hoping for the past few seasons that these line combinations could take them back to the Promised Land. If the team can finally play a solid team defense, then I can see the Penguins returning to the Eastern Conference Finals again this season, and their “two-headed monster” will be leading the way.