First off, RIP Mr. Dan Rooney. You’ll be missed not only by yinzers but by everyone you influenced throughout your life.
Now, onto the Penguins like how Mr. Rooney would’ve wanted.
The Penguins are a very good hockey team and they will look to take a 2-0 series lead over Columbus on Friday night. Here’s how they can do it.
The Pens can increase their series lead by doing alot of the same things that they did in game 1.
They played hard and had great goaltending. This team will be only as good as their goaltending is.
Marc-Andre Fleury will be in net again and put together a great start on Wednesday as he was thrust in due to Matt Murray‘s injury.
The Pens need to play a full 60 minutes this time, though, as they struggled playing in the first. If the Pens play like they did in that 2nd period in game one then I expect another great outcome. If they pass well and move the puck out of their zone quickly then the Pens will win and make it a 2-0 series heading to Columbus.
Now, if the Pens struggle, especially in the goaltending column, then expect a different result.
The Penguins need to focus on keeping the pressure on the Blue Jackets and just take the hit and use their speed to get away. Now if they let Columbus get under their skin and the Pens don’t play their fast game, then outcome may be different.
The Pens have to keep focus on the task at hand and ignore the bully style that Columbus plays. Keep a level head and expect good results. They earned that last year.
My prediction is a 3-2 win for the Pens. I expect a close game but for the Pens to play with the right mindset and head to Columbus with a 2-0 in the series.