Coverage begins at 7 p. You can watch the game online and on the NBC Sports app by clicking here.
With both coming off of similarly disappointing postseason exits in combined postseasons win between the two teams: zero there was no doubt plenty of additional pressure on both teams at the start of this season.
For the Penguins, it is about regaining the identity that helped make them a back-to-back Stanley Cup champion and trying to maximize the remaining window they have in the careers of Sidney Crosby , Evgeni Malkin , and Kris Letang. You only get players of that caliber for so long, and you owe it to them — and the franchise — to put them in the best possible situation to win.
Anytime you do not win, and especially when you lose like they did to the New York Islanders, it is going to feel like a missed opportunity. After blowing series leads in two different Eastern Conference Finals, as well as a series lead in a Stanley Cup Final, the season seemed like it was finally going to be the year for Steven Stamkos , Nikita Kucherov and Victor Hedman as they rolled through a win regular season.
What followed was the most disappointing of their postseason shortcomings, losing four consecutive games to the eighth-seeded Columbus Blue Jackets.
The Penguins entered the season with several questions, ranging from the state of their defense, to their forward depth, to how the power play would look without Phil Kessel following his offseason trade to Arizona.
Despite that, they have not only managed to win the majority of their games, they have carried the play more often than not, even in defeat. Even their two most recent losses Vegas and Florida probably had more to do with some bad puck luck than bad play.
They are playing smart, they are limiting odd-man rushes against, they are playing sound defensively, and they have received strong goaltending from the duo of Matt Murray and Tristan Jarry.
Add in more dominance from Crosby and they are keeping pace with the rest of the top teams in the Eastern Conference with a lineup that has been pieced together through call-ups.
There is an argument to be made that they have probably overachieved given the circumstances.
Other than Brayden Point , who missed the first three games of the season as he continued to recover from offseason hip surgery, they have been percent healthy from the start and have had the roster they have wanted to have at their disposal.
Despite that, neither the results nor the process are what they want to be. At times they have looked like a fraction of the team that dominated the regular season a year ago.
In one early game against Carolina they recorded just three shots on goal over more than 40 minutes of hockey. In another, they were dominated by an Ottawa team that has just one win on the season the win against the Lightning.
Overall there is nothing about their performance that is close to being up to their level of expectation. Andrei Vasilevskiy has struggled in goal, their penalty kill is among the worst in the league, and their overall 5-on-5 performance has at times just simply been bad. Entering play on Tuesday they are 26th in the league in shot attempt percentage and 24th in scoring differential, both signs that they are not yet carrying the play in those situations.
Given the roster they are returning it has been a rather underwhelming start. Wednesday seems like a great opportunity to get things trending back in the right direction. They are rested, they are at home, and they are playing a banged up, tired Penguins team that just dropped a decision on Tuesday night against Florida.
It is still too early to be too worried, but at some point they would probably like to start playing closer to their level of expectation.
|Minnesota Wild Live Stream||Louis Blues on December 11, in St. Paul, Minnesota.|
|Here's how to watch the Penguins vs. Wild||History[ edit ] Preparations of a new franchise[ edit ] Following the departure of the Minnesota North Stars after the season,  the state of Minnesota was without an NHL team for seven seasons.|
|Wild Hockey 2 Actualizar||Paul, MN cord-cutters.|
Everything is set up for them to start getting there on Wednesday. If they can not take advantage of the situation in front of them it might be another red flag in a start that has already had too many of them. Jeremy Roenick will interview Medal of Honor recipients during pre-game and game coverage on Wednesday night, and NHL Live will air a feature with interviews of both current Lightning players and Medal of Honor recipients.
Ottawa Senators on Monday at 5 p.