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With the Pens playing such a short compressed schedule with the majority of their games in the Atlantic division, are those teams at a bit of a disadvantage because of how physical that division is? Just thinking that the teams out of the SW will not be as bad off as the teams coming out of the Atlantic simply because of the style of play. Any validity to this or am I looking into it too much?
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Actually, in an 82 game season, they play 24 in their division (~29%). They will be playing 18 of the 48 in division this year (37.5%). Not really a huge jump.
It's the 48 games overall in the 3 months that will be more taxing than the physical nature of the division teams. What will be interesting to see is if physical play, minus rival games, is at the normal pace we're used to seeing up until closer to playoff time just because players will be trying to save energy and not get hurt with playing so many games in so little time.
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