Thursday, May 15, 2008

Crosby, Malkin and... Gill?

Ex-Leaf Hal Gill is getting a lot of credit for Pittsburgh's improved defensive play. This from The Star:

Gill has certainly brought down the Penguins' average team speed, but captain Sidney Crosby said Gill is one of the more underrated defenders in the NHL.

"I don't think he gets enough credit for how good he is with the puck, making that first pass," said Crosby. "He does a great job. He's not an easy guy to get away from down low. So he's been a big help to our team."

Gill is thriving in his new surroundings and was one of the most sought-after subjects of the media yesterday, who were trying to understand Pittsburgh's sudden commitment to defence.

The Penguins have allowed five power-play goals in 47 chances in the playoffs. That 89.4 per cent penalty kill rate is the second-best among the 16 teams that qualified for the post-season and tops among the four remaining.

The 2nd and 4th round draft picks Fletch converted for Gill will be nice for Toronto come June, but one wonders just how bad the Leafs already bad PK is gonna be without Hal on the blue line next year? What ranks below terrible?

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