NHL Penguins Fallout and AHL Penguins Playoff Push

Wednesday, May 14, 2014
With the Pittsburgh Penguins Game Seven loss to the New York Rangers last night, it marked the end of an era in Penguins hockey. Changes are certainly on the horizon.

For now, the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins are the only team in the organization that remains in postseason contention. Pittsburgh blew a 3-1 series lead that ended last night, and the Wheeling Nailers fell to Greenville in six games in the ECHL on Monday.

Couple that with the WHL's Portland Winterhawks Game Seven loss on Monday night, and the AHL Penguins stand to add a few pieces that could put them over the edge, currently tied 1-1 heading into Game Three tonight in Providence.

Derrick Pouliot is said to be joining the Pens for their postseason run, currently in the 2nd round against the Providence Bruins, and it wouldn't be surprising if Brian Gibbons joined the AHL club this weekend for Games Four and Five of their series with the PBruins.

Add that to the possibility of Andrew Ebbett and Philip Samuelsson returning to the lineup this weekend as well, and the Pens have the potential to be a very dangerous team. Add Gibbons, Ebbett, Pouliot and Samuelsson to this already deep lineup:

Zlobin - Drazenovic - Machacek
Sheary - Megna - Kobasew
Zolnierczyk - Payerl - Kostopoulos
Uher - Sill - Farnham

McNeill - Despres
Harrington - Mikkelson
Dumoulin - Goers

Can you imagine the top line of Zlobin-Ebbett-Kobasew re-united? How about the infamous Zolnierczyk-Drazenovic-Kostopoulos unit? How does a third line of Sheary-Gibbons-Megna sound, besides extremely quick and a problem for opposing defenses. Finish that with a big physical 4th line featuring Zach Sill and Adam Payerl and that forward core is as good as any one of the remaining AHL teams.

How about this top-six blue line:


Plenty of lineup decisions coming up this weekend for the Penguins and John Hynes, but first tonight's pivotal Game Three from the Dunkin Donuts Center at 7:05 ET. Follow all the latest in-game updates and postgame analysis right here at Highland Park Hockey. You can get live in-game updates of all the action on Twitter @H_P_Hockey.


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