The young guns of the Pittsburgh Penguins weren’t long learning from the veterans about winning. Two Stanley Cups in two seasons means most of the up and comers don’t know what losing is. Watching Sidney Crosby every day must be a great motivator.
Conor Sheary skates low with the leg strength style and passing vision of captain Crosby. Bryan Rust has the sheer determination of Patric Hornqvist. And the best of the young guns, Jake Guentzel, is a hybrid of just about everyone.
Something that makes Guentzel stand out more than all the rest is his hockey sense. Whether it’s natural or adopted, there can be no doubt it’s been at the very least nurtured by his surroundings. Watch here as he makes space for Crosby by eliminating the stick of the defenseman at the blue line.
This is a very little thing but it goes a long way to creating one or two extra chances a game that other teams don’t get. Crosby and Evgeni Malkin are famous for subtly moving sticks away in the slot to open up shooting windows. It looks like this trait is being passed on to the next generation.