Atlanta Braves v Pittsburgh Pirates

Making amends: Pens offer freebies, Bolts sell season tickets for $200


Two NHL clubs have begun offering fans incentives to return post-lockout.

The Pittsburgh Penguins are offering a number of discounts through the team website — here’s more, from Josh Yohe of the Tribune-Review:

Fans will receive vouchers for free concession items and have the ability to purchase merchandise for 50 percent off during the team‘s first four home games, the Penguins announced on their website.

It was also announced that the Penguins will be giving away prizes to fans in contests held on the team‘s website during the next week.

The Penguins also said they’ll allow fans to watch training camp practices at Consol Energy Center free of charge.

Another club, the Tampa Bay Lightning, put together a limited-time offer, selling 200 season ticket packages for $200.

Yeah, that’s right — 200 bucks.

Here’s more, from the team website:

The Tampa Bay Lightning are welcoming fans back to the rink and thanking them for their support by offering a $200 season ticket in the GTE Terrace Level as the team returns to ice. The special season ticket membership will go on sale today, January 9 and run while supplies last.

At just $200, becoming a Lightning Season Ticket Member has never been more affordable. Those who invest in these special memberships will also receive a $25 gift card to Tampa Bay Sports, the team’s official merchandise store inside the Tampa Bay Times Forum.

I have to say, that deal is outrageous. Not only do you get to watch Stamkos, St. Louis, Lecavalier et al. 24 times, you also get 24 opportunities to see Guy Boucher’s death stare:

source: Getty Images


So…will the fans come back?

Bettman’s personal message: “I’m sorry”

Crosby roars, Malkin scores in OT for Penguins win

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Controversy just seems to find the Pittsburgh Penguins. Credit Sidney Crosby & Co. for responding with a win on Wednesday.

Crosby generated two pretty goals, including this slam-dunk slapper:

… While Evgeni Malkin‘s overtime-winner stood as the Penguins managed a 4-3 overtime win against the St. Louis Blues tonight.

(You can see Malkin’s OT-clincher in the video above this post.)

Will this win and strong performance from Crosby silence murmurs about his relationship with Mario Lemieux? Probably not, yet it likely turns the volume down in some ways, including killing the “Is he struggling because of distractions” storyline.

You know, at least for a little while. Maybe.

Fight video: Claude Giroux vs. Nick Leddy

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Claude Giroux isn’t the nastiest, most physical captain the Philadelphia Flyers have employed. Even so, he can be feisty at times.

Wednesday showed that, as he clearly wasn’t happy with an earlier Nick Leddy hit, and eventually got the New York Islanders defenseman to drop his gloves.

You can see the fight and the check that inspired that scrap in the video above.

It’s the fourth fight Giroux has been a part of, with his most recent adversary being may his most bitter rival.

Not a heavyweight bout between Giroux and Leddy, mind you, but sometimes it’s amusing to soak in such a rare sight.

Carter Hutton gets flipped, stays in game

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Carter Hutton is getting something that might make fellow Nashville Predators goalie Pekka Rinne jealous: goal support.

Still, there was at least one moment where Rinne was likely happy to be on the bench, as Hutton was left flipping during this collision with Buffalo Sabres forward Marcus Foligno:

Remarkably, Hutton remained in the game.

If you’re the type who loves adding to your “hockey players are tough” files, put this under the goalies section.

Check out this incredible shot of that moment:

Update: The Predators held off the Buffalo Sabres to win 3-2.

Habs win big against Rangers, may have lost big with Price hurt

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Tonight was supposed to be about a clash of two Eastern Conference titans who sport arguably the two best goalies in the NHL. That mattered to Montreal Canadiens fans for about half the game against the New York Rangers, give or take a few minutes.

Priorities are now shifting to calling upon higher powers/etc. in hopes that Carey Price is OK.

Mike Condon replaced Price in the third period and … well, people are concerned.

Again, people are pretty worried right now.

Price being replaced isn’t the greatest sign, yet it’s early, so stay tuned for updates. Maybe it will merely be a matter of playing it safe?

Update: The good news is that Montreal won by a significant 5-1 margin.

Yes, that probably isn’t much solace for Habs fans. Agreed.

It sounds like Price re-aggravated his previous injury.