Pens pumped for ACC visit

Pittsburgh Penguins' James Neal, left, and his teammates in April, 2011. (REUTERS/Mike Carlson,...

Pittsburgh Penguins' James Neal, left, and his teammates in April, 2011. (REUTERS/Mike Carlson, file)

Mike Zeisberger, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:33 PM ET

TORONTO - Sid or no Sid, the Saturday night stage of the Air Canada Centre is a big deal for the visiting Pittsburgh Penguins.

“A lot of it has to do with family,” Penguins coach Dan Bylsma said on Friday. “A lot of guys playing closer to their family, many who come to see them. We go through a lot tickets there.

“It’s Hockey Night in Canada. I’m from Michigan where Hockey Night in Canada is a big thing. It’s an Original Six team. And the building has unique feel to it even though it’s a relatively new venue.”

Bylsma is not surprised at the early season success of the Maple Leafs.

“They’re an explosive team right now,” Bylsma said. “They’re being led by Phil Kessel, who’s a dangerous guy. Joffrey Lupul is playing well, they have a solid defence, and a young goaltender they play well for, as well as some guys stepping in for him.

“It’s early in the season but this is the way they were playing at the end of last season. They are playing with confidence.”


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