First, here’s the roster that the Pittsburgh Penguins are expected to send to Kansas City for tomorrow’s game against the Kings…
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.
As previously noted, the Kings will go with something of an unconventional set of lines and pairs tomorrow, even though after practice today, Terry Murray stressed the need for improved chemistry among the players. It’s not as though there won’t be more opportunities, though. The Kings play Wednesday in Denver, Friday and Anaheim and Saturday in Las Vegas, so it’s certain that most-established lines will be in place later in the week. Here’s what Murray said about last night’s game and the need for improvement…
MURRAY: “I kind of look at it as a lack of chemistry right now, looking at our top lines trying to get together and trying to become good lines. With Kopitar, Penner and Williams, I’m looking at two players who were injured at the end of the year and I’m looking at Dustin Penner, who came to us late in the season and is trying to go through almost a complete makeover in the offseason. So I’m looking for something good to happen off of that look. The same with Gagne, Richards and Brown. These are three players that haven’t played together before. Gags and Richards have, but you’ve got to get the line going. You’ve got to see them instinctively play the game, and I think we’re really out of sorts right now, when it comes to those plays that have to happen with good lines. So you have to work through it. You’ve got to go through difficult times and situations like last night, where maybe you’re
just out of kilter a little bit.”