Lacing Up: Thin on the Third Line?

By Joshua Neal; Thursday September 12, 2013

The Penguins have been a hockey club that prided themselves not only on high-level skill and scoring ability, but the checking lines to back it up – occasionally even chipping in a big goal or two (see: 2009 Stanley Cup Finals). But as the years have passed and the big-name players have earned themselves long-term, big-money contracts, some of those role players and out-of-place third liners find themselves in new cities. What’s left behind? Matt Paul and I will discuss the dearth that has replaced a wealth on the Penguins’ third line in this week’s edition of Lacing Up.

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Lacing Up: Martin Joins Penguins Coaching Staff

By Joshua Neal; Monday August 12, 2013

Word came down on Friday that the Penguins had made an addition to their coaching staff as we patiently trudge through the offseason. Jacques Martin is a name that has an undeniable association with hockey and coaching – but for Martin, the odd part is not that Martin will be coaching hockey again, but that it will be in an assistant’s role. It seems that he may be one of the most overqualified people in the NHL today. Martin was a head coach most notably with the Ottawa Senators and more recently, the Montreal Canadiens. So, what’s the angle?

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Lacing Up: A Look at What's Bruin in Boston

By Joshua Neal; Saturday June 1, 2013

It may seem like the Penguins have accomplished something as they head into the Eastern Conference Final against the Boston Bruins, but really, they’re only half way to their goal, and make no mistakes, the road won’t get any easier.

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Lacing Up: Don't Fear the Keeper

By Joshua Neal; Tuesday May 14, 2013

Despite being outplayed frequently against the New York Islanders, the Pittsburgh Penguins have escaped to the second round of the playoffs, where they will face Craig Anderson and the Ottawa Senators.

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Lacing Up: B-E-A-Utiful

By Joshua Neal; Monday March 11, 2013

Lots of hockey fans threw out lots of different scenarios for the Penguins’ void at second line winger. Players came, players were traded, players left. Now, the young guy gets his turn. And we may be speaking prematurely, but it’s hard to argue with his performance thus far in the NHL, even when he hasn’t been beside Evgeni Malkin and James Neal. We’re talking, of course, about Beau Bennett, the feature on this week’s edition of “Lacing Up.”

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No Fisticuffs Friday This Week

By Joshua Neal; Friday February 22, 2013

Check back next week for normal Fisticuffs Friday coverage!

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Lacing Up: Cooking Up Controversy

By Joshua Neal; Thursday February 21, 2013

While Matt Cooke has been a name that has raised eyebrows and conjured up some malicious words in other cities throughout his career and over the past week or so, a different Cook is stirring up trouble in Pittsburgh’s own fanbase. Ron Cook of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and his recent column on Penguins’ All-Pro Center Evgeni Malkin is the source of the controversy, and also the subject of this week’s edition of “Lacing Up.”

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Fisticuffs Friday - February 15th, 2013

By Joshua Neal; Friday February 15, 2013

Love may have been in the air for Valentine’s Day, but there was no love lost this week in the NHL. Come see who took some right in the kisser.

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Lacing Up: The Future of 58

By Joshua Neal; Wednesday February 13, 2013

In recent years, the Penguins have poured much of their attention in
the draft and development process into defensemen. One of the first guys to come through the system and make a sizable splash in the league was Kris Letang. With imminent free agency to come, what can we expect for Letang’s future with the Penguins?

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Fisticuffs Friday - February 8th, 2013

By Joshua Neal; Friday February 8, 2013

When the going gets tough, the tough get fighting.

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Fisticuffs Friday - February 1, 2013

By Joshua Neal; Friday February 1, 2013

“Wake up, wake up, it’s the first of tha month!” Bone Thugs-N-Harmony may have said it back in 1995, but this first of the month gives you even more reason to get out of bed: it’s Fisticuffs Friday.

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Lacing Up: The Future Is Now

By Joshua Neal; Monday January 28, 2013

The Penguins are a team at the league’s center of focus. Young stars, a growing fan base, and nationwide appeal. The time is as good as ever to claim a spot in history as a storied franchise… or is it? Read on to see how Matt and I hash out the future of the Pittsburgh Penguins.

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Fisticuffs Friday - January 25, 2013

By Joshua Neal; Friday January 25, 2013

In the first week of the 2013 NHL season, pugilism was rampant. 51 different players dropped the gloves. Who was good? Who was bad? And who got ugly?

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Lacing Up: Let The Losers Play

By Joshua Neal; Thursday January 24, 2013

In Russia, playoffs are for losers. Find out what this means and whether it’s something the NHL should consider in this week’s second “Lacing Up” discussion.

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Lacing Up: It's Good to be Back

By Joshua Neal; Monday January 21, 2013

We waited a long, long time for hockey to come back. Then we waited nervously as it looked like we’d be watching the Los Angeles Kings take on the Chicago Blackhawks on NBC, rather than the Penguins taking on the Flyers. When all the programming got under way, what did we see from the Penguins in their first game back after a long hiatus?

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Isles Claim Brian Strait

By Joshua Neal; Friday January 18, 2013

Brian’s headed to Brooklyn.

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Introducing "Fisticuffs Friday"

By Joshua Neal; Friday January 18, 2013

Fighting has always had its place in the league. Now it’s got its place in this blog. Welcome to “Fisticuffs Friday,” where the points are made up but the pain is real.

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Lacing Up: Taking the Ice

By Joshua Neal; Thursday January 10, 2013

The news of a deal being reached was welcomed for those of us who wanted nothing more than to see some NHL hockey this season. Whether it’s 82, 48, or 4 games, though, it all comes down to the product that the team can put out on the ice. We spent the summer analyzing the Penguins’ acquisitions and departures. Now as the season approaches, how does it all fit together?

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Lacing Up: Buying Out, Thinking Back

By Joshua Neal; Friday January 4, 2013

The lockout roller coaster continues, but at the time of the following conversation, things are looking more optimistic than otherwise. With the possibility of one contract buyout per team available in the incomplete new collective bargaining agreement, Matt and I get to thinking about the rule’s ramifications. With the possibility of some veteran players suddenly becoming bought-out free agents, Matt and I speak hypothetically on the situations that it would perhaps make possible.

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Lacing Up: Closing the Laces on 2012

By Joshua Neal; Thursday December 27, 2012

As the horn sounds on 2012, Matt and I talk about the best, worst, and most memorable moments as we close the book on another year of hockey.

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