Skip to content

Pens’ Orpik admits “I didn’t feel like I had any power last year”

Dec 27, 2012, 10:00 AM EST

orpikgetty Getty Images

Some believe that the lockout will pay dividends for players who were injured or even just experiencing the grind of NHL careers. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Seth Rorabaugh singles out rugged Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Brooks Orpik as one of those beneficiaries.

Orpik needed the 2011 offseason to rehab from surgeries instead of building up strength, admitting “I didn’t feel like I had any power last year.”

“The way we’re set up now (with the schedule), you make all your gains in the summer and you just try to maintain that during the season,” Orpik said. “Once you get going in the season, you’re not really making any gains strength-wise or conditioning-wise … You dig yourself a hole.”

Orpik explains the areas where that lost strength hurts, including obvious ones like battling for pucks. It’s also a big part of skating; the hard-hitting blueliner is known to many as a surprisingly swift skater when healthy.

Oddly enough, his 2011-12 season wasn’t all that bad, though – at least on paper.

He averaged 22:33 minutes per game, more than a minute higher than his previous high of 20:53 in 2010-11. His simple stats were fine, too; he scored two goals and 18 points in 73 games with a career-high +19 rating.

Yet Orpik is bringing up his struggles, so they likely surfaced in the “little things” that make him an asset in his own zone.

(Well, that and hitting people really hard.)

Latest Posts
  1. Ladd leads the Jets over the Kings

    Mar 1, 2015, 11:30 PM EST

    Andrew Ladd Getty Images

    Winnipeg moves three points back of Chicago in the Central Division.

  2. Video: Leafs’ Polak with a dangerous hit on Caps’ Johansson

    Mar 1, 2015, 9:15 PM EST

    Screen Shot 2015-03-01 at 9.09.20 PM

    The Washington forward remains in the game.

  3. Stars send Cole to the Wings for prospects (Confirmed)

    Mar 1, 2015, 8:00 PM EST

    Florida Panthers v Dallas Stars Getty Images

    Both teams also swapped draft picks in the deal.

  4. Report: Rangers, Zuccarello nearing a four-year deal

    Mar 1, 2015, 7:06 PM EST

    Mats Zuccarello Getty Images

    He is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent after this season.

  5. Video: Jets and Kings get physical in the second

    Mar 1, 2015, 6:35 PM EST

    Screen Shot 2015-03-01 at 6.18.27 PM

    It started with a Matt Greene hit on Mark Scheifele.

  6. Video: Jackets’ Johansen with an open ice hit on Crosby

    Mar 1, 2015, 6:15 PM EST

    Screen Shot 2015-03-01 at 6.07.24 PM

    The Pens’ captain was unharmed on the play.

  7. Goalie nods: Ducks give another start to Gibson

    Mar 1, 2015, 3:38 PM EST

    John Gibson AP

    Sunday’s expected starting goalies.

  8. Anders Lee named rookie of the month

    Mar 1, 2015, 2:22 PM EST

    Zdeno Chara, Anders Lee AP

    The Islanders winger was February’s best first-year player.

  9. Jets activate Wheeler from injured reserve

    Mar 1, 2015, 12:55 PM EST

    Winnipeg Jets v Calgary Flames Getty Images

    Winnipeg faces Los Angeles on Sunday.

  10. Leafs claim Erixon, Ducks waive Bourque

    Mar 1, 2015, 12:21 PM EST

    Chicago Blackhawks v Colorado Avalanche Getty Images

    A quick rundown of waiver transactions on Sunday.

Featured video

Trade deadline storylines to watch
Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. R. Miller (2853)
  2. M. Giordano (2604)
  3. K. Okposo (2551)
  4. T. Hall (2492)
  5. N. Horton (2371)