PITTSBURGH (93-7 The FAN) – It was about a week ago that Penguins Head Coach Dan Bylsma told the assembled media that he didn’t believe in resting players heading into the playoffs despite his team not having much left to play for. But the message sent last night against the Colorado Avalanche suggests something entirely different.
While players like Evgeni Malkin have missed time before last night with an injury, there was no sign that Sidney Crosby, Chris Kunitz or Brooks Orpik had been hurt. However, each of their names were missing from the lines last night as they were listed out with unspecified injuries. Defneseman Olli Maatta also was out last night, missing his second straight game with an undisclosed injury.
Despite not having many of their top players though, the Pens went into Colorado and took care of business against a sure-fire playoff team in the Avalanche, coming out with a 3-2 shootout victory. Avalanche Head Coach Patrick Roy said after the game that he’d probably be doing the same thing as Bylsma when it comes to resting his players up for the playoffs.
So the question remains, what has caused Bylsma’s change in philosophy, and will it work? Only time will tell as the Pens will look to get back to the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time since 2009, when they defeated the Detroit Red Wings.