Below is day by day news from Pittsburgh Penguins training camp. A week full of intra-squad games and practices was capped off with the preseason opener against Columbus.
Wed, Sept. 14
Crosby Watch: Sidney Crosby, the Penguins’ most exciting prospect since Mario Lemieux, made his debut in front of a sizeable crowd of Pittsburghers.
Camp Teams Announced: The teams for the Penguins annual training camp tournament were announced. Prospects Ryan Lannon, Andy Schneider, Alex Rouleau, Ben Eaves, Shane Endicott, Daniel Carcillo, and Jordan Morrison will skate together on the Gold Team. The White Team features Kristopher Letang, Ryan Whitney, Daniel Fernholm, Cam Paddock, and Stephen Dixon. Forwards Colby Armstrong, Johannes Salmonsson, Michel Ouellet, and Moises Guiterrez are joined by blueliner Paul Bissonnette and netminder Andy Chiodo on the Red Team. Finally, Crosby, Marc-Andre Fluery, J-P Paquet, Noah Welch, Drew Fata, Michael Sersen, Maxime Talbot, Ryan Stone, Tyler Kennedy, and Jordan Morrison will wear black.
Thu, Sept. 15
Injury Update: Center Shane Endicott left the first game with an injury and did not return.
Crosby Watch: Crosby skated on the top line for the Black Team, in between veterans John LeClair and Mark Recchi. He recorded two assists.
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Prospects scoring goals today were: Jonathan Filewich, RW (2), Stephen Dixon, C (2), Erik Christensen, C.
Puck Stoppers: Mark-Andre Fleury relented only one goal to the Gold Team, while Andy Chiodo was burned for six goals by the White Team.
Fri, Sept. 16
Injury Update: Right wing Colby Armstrong suffered a shoulder injury.
Crosby Watch: Crosby notched his third assist of the tournament, and would have scored his first goal if not for an athletic save Jocelyn Thibault. He committed a penalty that led to Ryan Whitney’s penalty shot goal.
Prospects scoring goals today were: Ryan Whitney, D, Jonathan Filewich, RW, Drew Fata, D, Erik Christensen, C, Johannes Salmonsson, C.
Puck Stoppers: Yesterday’s fortunes were reversed as Chiodo gave up only two goals in the Red Teams’ victory. Fluery was beaten four times in a loss to the White Team.
Sat, Sept. 17
Crosby Watch: The youngster didn’t disappoint the largest crowd to date, scoring two goals. The first one was on a penalty shot.
Prospects scoring goals today were: Sidney Crosby, C (2), Ryan Stone, C (2), Kristopher Letang, D (2), Jonathan Filewich, RW, Maxime Talbot, C, Drew Fata, D, Jordan Morrison, C, Ben Eaves, C, Cam Paddock, C.
Puck Stoppers: Chiodo and Fluery went head to head today, and Fluery proved why he was taken first overall. He dominated the Red Team, only giving up one goal late in the second period. The Black Team, on the other hand, thrashed Chiodo for seven goals.
Sun, Sept. 18
Injury Update: Colby Armstrong returned to action.
Crosby Watch: Crosby’s Black Team lost in the series championship. He was held scoreless.
Prospects scoring goals today were: Erik Christensen, C (5), Tyler Kennedy, C, Maxim Talbot, C, Ben Eaves, C, Alex Rouleau, D.
Puck Stoppers: Fluery relented five goals in the championship game. Chiodo, playing for third place, couldn’t contain the Gold Team, as they scored eight goals, five by Erik Christensen.
Sent Packing: Six Penguins prospects were returned to their CHL teams after practice today. Moises Guiterrez, Tyler Kennedy, Jordan Morrison, Johannes Salmonsson, Kristopher Letang, and Jean-Phillipe Paquet have finished their tenure as Penguins for this year.
Mon, Sept. 19
Crosby Watch: Crosby was held out of the preseason opener against Columbus. He will make his debut next week in Wilkes-Barre.
Shootout showdown: The Penguins and the Blue Jackets remained tied, 2-2, after the overtime period, so they were thrust into a shootout under the new CBA rules. Konstantin Koltsov scored for the Penguins, but the Blue Jackets notched two goals to win the shootout and the game.
Making the Cut: Prospects making the trip to Columbus were goaltender Marc-Andre Fluery, defensemen Ryan Whitney and Noah Welch, and forwards Maxime Talbot, Daniel Carcillo, and Michel Ouellet.
Prospects scoring goals today: Michel Ouellet tallied a goal and an assist against the Blue Jackets.
Puck Stoppers: Marc-Andre Fleury started and lost, allowing two goals in regulation and two during the shootout.
On the Bubble: The rosters are starting to shake out and some prospects look to make an impact in “the ‘Burgh” this season. Shane Endicott seemed to have the inside track on the fourth line center spot. With his injury, Erik Christensen and Maxim Talbot will battle Matt Hussey. There is also at least one wing spot open for Colby Armstrong, Michel Ouellet, or perhaps Matt Murley. On defense, the top eight seem to be set, with highly regarded prospects Ryan Whitney and Noah Welch on the outside looking in. Marc-Andre Fleury is looking to unseat Sebastien Caron as the backup to veteran goaltender Jocelyn Thibault.
Looking Ahead: The Pens have Tuesday off. They will be practicing in Wilkes-Barre, home of their AHL affiliate, for the next week. Their next preseason game will be against Boston on Wednesday night in Wilkes-Barre.
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