PITTSBURGH (93-7 The Fan) – TSN NHL analyst Aaron Ward joined “The Fan Morning Show” on Tuesday to talk about the Penguins and the NHL with the playoffs only a few weeks away.

Ward said that the Penguins may be facing a bit of an identity crisis under Mike Johnston during his first year.

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“You look at the Pittsburgh Penguins – inexplicably, they have the second-lowest goals scored,” Ward said. “But, then you flip it, and you think about the identity of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Right now, they have the third-best goals against. It’s a crazy flip, if you look at the lineup overall, there have been some major changes, and it does take a getting-used-to component, and understanding that these guys have to get acclimated to each other. It’s the getting the goal component that’s missing right now, and that’s odd to say about the Pittsburgh Penguins.”

Ward said Steve Downie could be valuable to the Penguins in the playoffs.

“He is a necessary component,” Ward said. “You don’t often get guys that are agitators, that are thorns in the rear ends, that can skate. He can have a positive effect, just to get guys to get their heads up, in the latter stages when things mean so much more.”

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He also praised one of the Pens’ trade deadline acquisitions.

“You guys got the pickup of the century in Daniel Winnik,” Ward said.

The interview can be heard here:

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