Pittsburgh Penguins’ injuries not affecting their recent results


Dec 13, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; New Jersey Devils defenseman Jon Merrill (34) reacts as Pittsburgh Penguins right wing Chris Conner (left center) and defenseman Robert Bortuzzo (right center) and center Joe Vitale (46) celebrate a goal by Conner during the first period at the CONSOL Energy Center. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Penguins just seem to keep winning despite so many injuries to this team. They are 22-10-1 and eight points ahead in the Metropolitan Division. Injuries to Brooks Orpik, Rob Scuderi, Paul Martin, Tanner Glass and Tomas Vokoun just don’t seem to matter. Why are they winning? Let’s examine.

Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin are leading the way for the Penguins right now. Crosby leads the league in points with 44 and Malkin trails him just by a few. They are really pushing each other in the race for the Art Ross Trophy. Malkin was having a bad year to start but it seems that has all gone away as he has a 10-game point streak.

Chris Kunitz is also helping out a lot as Sidney Crosby is pushing him to make Team Canada. You forget so easily that when Crosby and Malkin both had major injuries in 2011, they still made the playoffs somehow. James Neal and Jordan Staal led the way before they were eventually eliminated in seven games by the Lightning. It seems like the Penguins are at their best in these situations.

Marc-Andre Fleury is also a huge part of the success of this team. He leads the NHL in wins and has just been amazing this year. He’s taken a lot of the load since backup Vokoun is still recovering from a blood clot which will sideline him at least another month. So far Flower is 18-8-1 with a 2.01 goals-against average and a .922 save percentage. That is just remarkable for him. If the Penguins are to run away with the division, he’s going to have to ply a huge factor in that.

The Penguins are playing some great hockey right now. When they get healthy again, they should play even better, but they always seem to do well when players are injured. Maybe they’ll get on a huge winning streak soon, as they have the last three years, and say goodbye to everyone in the division.