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Penguins Penguins Report: 11/12/01

Monday, November 12, 2001

Compiled by Dave Molinari


Penguins vs. New Jersey Devils, 8:08 p.m. tomorrow, Continental Airlines Arena. TV, radio: Fox Sports Net; WWSW-FM (94.5), WBGG-AM (970).


Coach Rick Kehoe gave the Penguins yesterday off, and they planned to spend most of the day in Tampa, Fla., before flying to New Jersey last evening. They are scheduled to practice this morning.

C Wayne Primeau never had taken a penalty shot in the NHL before being awarded one in the Penguins' 3-2 overtime loss Saturday against Tampa Bay, so he sought the guidance of a teammate who has taken more than a few. Primeau asked Mario Lemieux, who has scored on six of his eight penalty shots in the NHL, how he should attack Lightning G Nikolai Khabibulin and was told his best bet likely was to move in with speed, then shoot between Khabibulin's legs. Primeau followed that advice and become just the third player in the league to convert on a penalty shot this season. Ten others have failed.

G Jean-Sebastien Aubin acquitted himself fairly well Saturday, stopping 31 of 34 shots, but Kehoe deferred any judgment on how Aubin had played. "I'm going to have to look at the tape," he said. That video will show that all three Tampa Bay goals went between Aubin's legs, although Vaclav Prospal's winning goal with 30.2 seconds left in overtime came on a power play and apparently was in the net before Aubin saw it. The loss dropped Aubin's record this season 0-3-1 -- his most recent victory came March 10 -- and seemed to put a few fresh dents in his confidence. "I haven't won yet," he said. "It's getting hard."

Although numerous teams from the NHL and other leagues have toured Ground Zero in lower Manhattan, Kehoe said the Penguins have made no plans to visit the area devastated by the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. The Penguins are staying on the other side of the Hudson River from Manhattan, just a few miles from where the World Trade Center towers stood.

Tampa Bay winger Matthew Barnaby walked out of the Ice Palace about an hour after Prospal scored Saturday night, just like he does after every home game. This time, Barnaby was delighted that he didn't have to leave the building in an ambulance, because he had feared his right knee was badly damaged by a knee-to-knee hit from Penguins D Darius Kasparaitis less than seven minutes into the third period. Barnaby was carrying the puck down the right side, then seemed to catch Kasparaitis off-guard by cutting toward the center ice the ice. Kasparaitis threw out his right leg, and his knee smacked into that of Barnaby, who was down for several minutes and had to be helped off the ice. "I was scared," Barnaby said. A subsequent examination detected no significant damage, and he had no sign of a limp as he left the arena. He did, however, make it clear that he will be looking for revenge against Kasparaitis at the earliest opportunity. If neither is injured -- or traded -- Barnaby's first chance will come Jan. 23, when the Lightning visits Mellon Arena.

Penguins General Manager Craig Patrick and play-by-play man Mike Lange, both of whom will be inducted to the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto today, will be honored again Wednesday, when they will enter the Penguins Hall of Fame before a game against the New York Islanders. A.T. Caggiano, the late locker-room attendant, will be inducted at the same time.

The Penguins didn't offer D Marc Bergevin a contract when he became a free agent after last season, and no other team showed much interest, either. Still, Lemieux said he wasn't surprised when last week Bergevin caught on with St. Louis, the team that traded him to the Penguins Dec. 28. "Not really, because he's a good defensive player, and he's a great team guy," Lemieux said. "You can never have enough of those guys in the dressing room." He also believes Bergevin can contribute more than intangibles and his renowned sense of humor to the Blues. "He can still play," Lemieux said. "He proved last year when he came [to the Penguins] that he can play good defense."


WILKES-BARRE/SCRANTON (3-10-2-1) did not play. RW Tom Kostopoulos has seven goals in the past four games, at least one in each. His 11 goals lead the team.

WHEELING (5-6) did not play. Its scheduled game at Cincinnati was postponed until Dec. 27 because of a Britney Spears concert.

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