Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Penguins Expected Lineup...? (UPDATED, full roster after the jump)

No definite roster that I can find yet.  But, we can infer a bunch!

Per the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review:

Bylsma suggested the exhibition game Tuesday against Los Angeles at Kansas City would likely feature a final audition for on-the-bubble players to win consideration for a roster spot. He said there would "probably be two" rounds of cuts before selection of the season-opening roster and that weekend games at Chicago and Detroit would be used to determine line combinations for regulars. The Penguins expect to make another round of cuts Thursday.
Also, according to that same article, no Brooks Orpik still sidelined due to offseason abdominal surgery.
No Crosby either, but possibly Jordan Staal will play.

“I’m kind of excited to see a new arena and a new city,” said Pittsburgh center Jordan Staal. “It’s very cool. To hear that it is going to be sold out makes for a pretty impressive sign for a team.” 
Here were the Penguins line combos and practice groups on Monday.

Second Practice Group:

4 Zbynek Michalek7 Paul Martin9 Pascal Dupuis10 Mark Letestu15 Dustin Jeffrey18 James Neal19 Jason Williams23 Ryan Craig24 Matt Cooke26 Steve Sullivan28 Nick Johnson29 Marc-Andre Fleury 30 Scott Munroe58 Kris Letang70 Joseph Morrow71 Evgeni Malkin87 Sidney Crosby 

So, let's go through and see what we do know.  Bylsma wants to play bubble guys, but he also will throw in a few vets just so he doesn't send an AHL team up against a predominantly NHL roster (although it didn't seem to hurt him last year...).  Personally, I believe all of the guys in the line pairings above travel.  So, the team needs at least three more forwards, one more defenseman, and two goalies.  Already we can say that Malkin probably won't go, Crosby definitely will not, Williams apparently has some kind of injury, I would be really surprised to see Fleury.  The goalies will probably be Brad Thiessen and Brent Johnson, just cuz son.  Matt Cooke will more than likely be held back because he is Matt Cooke.  I would not be surprised to see Paul Martin and 2011 first round pick Joseph Morrow just as throw in players, but I would have to imagine either Letang or Martin make the trip.  Forward-wise, maybe Dupuis or Letestu just for a veteran touch.  Nor would I be surprised to see Steve Sullivan either, just to see what he has left in the tank.  Maybe Dustin Jeffery or Nick Johnson as the final choice.

I don't know, though, what do you think?

The next page has the Penguins lineup.  How well did I guess?  Probably not well...

Via, the source of all sources, Rich Hammond at LA Kings Insider (of all places):

10-Mark Letestu; 11-Jordan Staal; 12-Richard Park; 14-Chris Kunitz; 18-James Neal; 25-Eric Tangradi; 27-Craig Adams; 28-Nick Johnson; 33-Steve MacIntyre; 46-Joe Vitale; 48-Tyler Kennedy; 71-Evgeni Malkin.
2-Matt Niskanen; 5-Deryk Engelland; 6-Ben Lovejoy; 7-Paul Martin; 37-Brian Strait; 70-Joseph Morrow; 78-Scott Harrington.
29-Marc-Andre Fleury; 39-Brad Thiessen

Yeah, not great, but HOLY CRAP MALKIN AND FIRST ROUND PICK JOE MORROW ARE COMING!!!  Well, garsh, they do like us...

For those of you who bought tickets, consider yourselves lucky. 

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