May 1, 2013, 9:55 AM EST
Evgeni Malkin scored nine goals and 33 points in 31 games this season. Most players would do almost anything for that level of production, but the 26-year-old Penguins forward isn’t happy.
“I want to show my best game,” Malkin told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, “because this year was not great (for) me, but I have a chance to play better.”
Malkin scored 50 goals and 109 points in 75 games last season and won the Hart Trophy, Ted Lindsay Award, and Art Ross Trophy in recognition of his efforts. However, his Penguins ultimately lost their first-round series against the Philadelphia Flyers in six games.
“I think (about it) a lot,” Malkin admitted.
This series against the New York Islanders is a chance at redemption for the Penguins after failing to live up to the hype last season. They’re going into the playoffs with even higher expectations this year after comfortably earning the first seed and adding Jussi Jokinen, Jarome Iginla, Douglas Murray, and Brenden Morrow in separate trades.
Still, even with those additions, Malkin will be one of the key players in this series. He has the potential to be a hero, as he was in the 2009 postseason when the Penguins won the Stanley Cup, and it sounds like he’ll settle for nothing less from himself.
- The Chip ‘n’ Chase: Outrage over hockey violence, Gary Bettman is a happy man, Darryl Sutter is awesome, and more! 7
- Report: Isles coach Capuano not seen as problem 7
- Rivalry Night on NBCSN: Flyers challenge top-ranked Blackhawks 16
- Update: Ryan Callahan out 4-6 weeks with MCL sprain 12
- Ovechkin wills Caps to stunning shootout win vs. Bolts 62
- Bettman: No decision on expansion, but they’re listening 13
- Neal admits kneeing Marchand was ‘not the smartest decision’ 77
- Leafs captain Phaneuf suspended two games for boarding 37
- Rangers confirm Staal suffered concussion 8
- Winnipeg to get outdoor game; Phoenix wants one 33
- Video: Penguins’ Orpik stretchered off ice; Bruins’ Thornton given match penalty (182)
- Neal suspended five games for kneeing Marchand in the head (156)
- Bruins coach admits Thornton crossed the line, slams Pens for not being ‘truthful’ (137)
- Pens put Orpik on IR (132)
- Orpik suffers from concussion, including memory loss (118)