Everything has gone wrong for Penguins

PITTSBURGH – The Pittsburgh Penguins aren’t finished yet.

But they are definitely in trouble.

Their shockingly bad performances in the first two games of the Eastern Conference final series is the talk of the hockey world.

A lot of people are rooting against the Penguins for the same reason a lot of people root against the New York Yankees. They have the big stars, and they added even more talent at the trading deadline.

What’s gone wrong? The short answer is everything.

The Boston Bruins have outworked the Penguins, and they’ve had a better plan. That wouldn’t matter if they weren’t getting quality goaltending from Tuukka Rask.

Now the Bruins also have confidence. NHL Network analyst Kelly Chase said the Bruins are in the Penguins’ collective heads, and he may be right about that.

Coach Dan Bylsma has promised line changes for Game 3, and that can’t be a bad idea. The circumstances call for him to do things differently. A 9-1 goal differential is a pretty good indication that things aren’t working.

To keep it as basic as possible, the Penguins need to play harder and smarter. They were incredibly reckless with the puck in Game 2, most notably when Sidney Crosby’s turnover led to a Boston goal in the first minute of play.

The Penguins’ biggest stars have been their biggest disappointment – start with Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, then include Kris Letang and too many others. Letang, in particular, was completely irresponsible in Game 2.

Game 3 will be the test to determine whether the Penguins have a pulse in this series.

Late night trouble

Pittsburgh Steelers lineman Mike Adams is expected to make a complete recovery from the stab wounds that landed him in the hospital over the weekend.

Police are still sorting out all the details, but whatever happened did so around 3 a.m.

That’s the problem. You always get the argument that players are vibrant young people who can’t be expected to sit at home with a good book. They want to get out and have a good time.

That’s fine. But when you’re out at 3 a.m., weird things can happen, like winding up in a hospital with more than one stab wound.

It’s great to be young and a Steeler, but that good life comes with a great responsibility. There are people out there looking for trouble. Maybe Adams’ assailants knew who he was. Maybe they just saw him as an enormous guy with a nice vehicle that they wanted to steal.

If you’re going to be out at 3 a.m., make sure you’re in a place that’s reasonably safe.

And if you can’t be sure it’s reasonably safe, don’t be on the streets at 3 a.m.

Mehno can be reached at johnmehnocolumn@gmail.com.