Where Have the Penguins Gone?

Ryan Senior Writer IMay 27, 2008

After being shut out for the first two games of the Stanley Cup Finals, the Penguins have answers to give.

Namely: "what the hell happened?"

Well, that question can be answered in a couple of ways.

Firstly, Marc-Andre Fleury hasn't been the same guy we've seen in the first three rounds of the playoffs.  He's been weak on rebounds and letting in some soft goals.  He needs to come back strong in Game 3 and tighten things up if the Pens want to get back into this series.

Secondly, the Pens scoring attack is being shut down by a very good Detroit defense.

The Pens are having a hard time getting much of an attack going because the Detroit defenders are right there, either in their face or in their lanes.  It also doesn't help that the few chances the Pens are getting, like Jordan Staal's un-interfered-with attempt from the slot, they aren't converting.

Thirdly, Evgeni Malkin has been a non-factor.  The Pens hopes were hinging on he and Crosby, who has been shut down so far in the series.  If things are going to get turned around for the Pens, Geno has to take charge and assert himself.

Another thing? Chris Osgood happened--and this boggles my mind.

Osgood has been barely more than an adequate goalie for much of his career--never great, never bad.  But lately, he's been looking like Patrick Roy in his heyday.  That, more than anything, is why the Wings are in such a favorable position.

It's not too late. There's still time.  But the Pens have questions to answer and they had better answer them quickly.  Otherwise, this is going to be a very short series.