Blueline Beat: 2/18/12-2/29/12 and February Stats

While a few injuries affected some of the Pens defensemen the second half of February, the most notable came when Kris Letang suffered another shot to the head on February 29th in the game against the Dallas Stars. Pens fans anxiously await his return from his concussion-like symptoms. On a more positive note, the Pens came up with many solid victories towards the end of the month. Here is my recap of those games and the stats for February.

Pens vs. Flyers 2/18 (W 6-4)

-This was not necessarily the best game for the Pens' defensemen, but they held on to allow the Pens to win this game.

-Once again, the penalty killing unit was strong in this game.

-Fleury stopped 27 out of 31 shots.

-Engelland, Letang, Martin, and Niskanen each had one shot on goal in this game.

-Niskanen led the defense with two blocked shots.

-Letang led in ice time with 23:24

Pens vs. Sabres 2/19 (L 6-2)

-Engelland scored his third goal of the season.

-The defensemen gave a sloppy performance and did not find any consistency.

-Brent Johnson got the start in this game. After giving up 3 goals on 12 shots he was pulled in the second period. Fleury was also 3 for 12.

-Letang led the defense with two shots on goal.

-Michalek led the team with an impressive seven blocked shots.

-Martin led in ice time with 24:22

Pens vs. Rangers 2/21 (W 2-0)

-Orpik sat out this game with an upper body injury so Lovejoy got a spot in the lineup.

-Letang earned his 22nd assist on the goal from Malkin.

-This was a great bounce back game for the Pens. The defense played with a lot more confidence and gave a very solid effort.

-This game was probably the strongest of the season for Martin and Michalek, who we all know have had their struggles lately. Martin seemed to perform better by being paired up with Letang.

-Fleury stopped all 27 shots he faced, earning his 22nd shutout of his career. This tied him with Tom Barrasso for the franchise record.

-Lovejoy led the defense with four shots on goal.

-Michalek led the team with three blocked shots.

-Letang led in ice time with 28:41.

Pens vs. Lightning 2/25 (W 8-1)

-Michalek earned his sixth assist on the goal from Cooke.

-Engelland earned his 11th assist on Malkin's first goal.

-Niskanen earned his 15th assist on Malkin's second goal.

-Engelland dropped the gloves with Angelidis in the second period, and also delivered six hits throughout the course of the game. Another physical performance from Engelland.

-Martin led the defense with two shots on goal.

-Orpik led the team with five blocked shots.

-Letang led in ice time with 22:55.

Pens vs. Blue Jackets 2/26 (W 4-3)

-Letang scored his ninth goal of the season with a strong slapper after his first in this game was waived off by a sketchy goaltender interference call.

-The defense gave a good performance and limited the Blue Jackets' scoring chances.

-Brad Thiessen got his first NHL start with Johnson being down due to injury. Thiessen played with composure and did not make many mistakes. He stopped 22 out of 24 shots.

-Letang led the defense with five shots on goal.

-Letang led the team with four blocked shots.

-Letang led in ice time with 26:29.

Pens vs. Stars 2/29 (W 4-3)

-Orpik earned his tenth assist on the goal from Sullivan.

-Martin earned his 18th assist on the goal from Kunitz.

-The Pens suffered a loss when Kris Letang took a shot to the head from Eric Nystrom. The Pens made the smart choice in sitting him for the rest of the game. Word isthat he has been suffering "concussion-like" symptoms and engaging in light workouts off the ice.

-The team dug deep after this turn of events and earned the victory after an extended shootout.

-Of note, Orpik had nine hits in this game.

-Fleury stopped 30 out of 33 shots and made key saves late in the game to allow the Pens to come up with a victory.

-Engelland led the defense with four shots on goal.

-Michalek led the team with six blocked shots.

-Orpik led in ice time with 26:54.

February Stats
Leader of each category will be bolded.

GP: 12
Points: 0G 2A
SOG: 4
BS: 34
Hits: 53
Average Ice Time: 22:11
(+/-) +8

GP: 13
Points: 4G 4A
SOG: 29
BS: 23
Hits: 17
Average Ice Time: 22:54
(+/-) -2

GP: 13
Points: 0G 1A
SOG: 17
BS: 39
Hits: 11
Average Ice Time: 20:48
(+/-) +3

GP: 13
Points: 0G 2A
SOG: 20
BS: 16
Hits: 0
Average Ice Time: 21:24
(+/-) -1

GP: 13
Points: 1G 1A
SOG: 13
BS: 10
Hits: 18
Average Ice Time: 16:00
(+/-) -4

GP: 12
Points: 1G 1A
SOG: 21
BS: 2
Hits: 32
Average Ice Time: 15:33
(+/-) -2

GP: 2
SOG: 4
BS: 3


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