Playoff Gameday – Round One, Game One – Lightning

CONSOL Energy Center – 7:00PM
Series Tied 0-0.
Team Notes:

No matter what anyone says or doesn't say, Sidney Crosby isn't playing tonight.

James Neal will be in the line-up for his first ever NHL playoff game.


The Lightning watched the 2004 Stanley Cup DVD for inspiration.

Nine Tampa Bay players will be making their playoff debuts tonight.


Know Your Enemy: Lightning Hockey Blog

What they're saying about the Lightning:

We know what this team can do. We know that our powerplay can take over a game. We know how much of a monster Vinny has been recently. And the firepower we have in St. Louis, Stamkos, Purcell, Gagne and Malone. This series can go either way if our boys keep their composure. If they stick to the Boucher's system and play the same game they've played all year, they'll be fine. Trust

Penguins Lines:

James Neal – Mark Letestu – Alexei Kovalev
Chris Kunitz – Jordan Staal – Tyler Kennedy
Pascal Dupuis – Max Talbot – Chris Conner
Mike Rupp – Craig Adams – Arron Asham

Kris Letang – Brooks Orpik
Zbynek Michalek – Paul Martin
Deryk Engelland – Ben Lovejoy

Marc-Andre Fleury

A guess at the Lightning Lines:

Steve Downie – Steven Stamkos – Martin St. Louis
Simon Gagne – Vincent Lecavalier – Ryan Malone
Adam Hall – Dominic Moore – Teddy Purcell
Dana Tyrell – Nate Thompson – Sean Bergenheim

Eric Brewer – Victor Hedman
Marc-Andre Bergeron – Pavel Kubina
Mattias Ohlund – Brett Clark

Dwayne Roloson

Photoshop City:
Youtube City:

CBC's been dominating for years.
If you're looking for a sign for tonight's game or anything else, you can find some here.
There's a white out tonight.
Rinkotology entry has been EXTENDED until 6:30 pm.  You can select your team until 6:59 pm.
We've put together a slightly different Gameday format for the playoffs.  Let us know what you think.
The Pittsburgh Penguins are not the overwhelming favorites in this series.  That's fine with us.  The Penguins weren't the favorites in 2009 in Detroit.  The Penguins weren't the favorites when Crosby when down with an injury in January.  The Penguins were left for dead when both Crosby and Malkin got injured.  That doesn't matter.  It never has mattered to this team.
The Penguins have already wildly exceeded our expectations this year and they've done it by committee.  They've done it with hard work, dedication, perseverance and desire.  They've grinded out goals.  They've blocked shots.  They've hit hard and they've been hit hard.  Players who no one expected to amount to anything have filled the huge holes left by two of the game's greatest talents.
This is the Stanley Cup Playoffs.  It's not always the best team or the most talented team that wins.  The playoffs are about hard work and dedication and perseverance and desire.  They're about everything the Pittsburgh Penguins have shown us this year.  These Penguins know what it takes to win.  Now they just need to go out and do it.
The CONSOL Energy Center is our scene tonight.  The new building will see its first playoff game today.  Across the road, near the big screen and all the fans, sits the Igloo.  It knows what the playoffs are all about.  That building is old and worn down.  It's seen its share of heartbreak and sorrow.  It's battle-tested, just like these Penguins are.  Now it's time to welcome the CONSOL to the big dance with a loud cheer and a big win.  We can already hear "Boys of Winter" playing.
"Get busy living, or get busy dying."
Do It.
Go Pens.