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PO Joseph of the Pittsburgh Penguins skates during a game
Photo credit: PensBurgh

Young defensmen PO Joseph stepping into a bigger role down the stretch

Published April 7, 2024 at 9:02 PM

Sometimes in hockey, it's the simple plays that make all the difference. Take Drew O'Connor's game-winning goal against the Columbus Blue Jackets on March 28, for example. It all started with a basic but crucial move by defenseman P.O Joseph.

The puck was bouncing dangerously close to the Penguins' crease, and Joseph stepped up to the plate. With a quick smack off the boards, he sent a perfect outlet pass right to O'Connor and his linemate Sidney Crosby. And just like that, O'Connor buried it in the back of the net for the win.

A few months ago, you might not have seen Joseph making plays like that. He wasn't getting much ice time. Whether it was due to injuries or just being a healthy scratch, Joseph found himself out of the lineup more often than not.

Now, as the Penguins chase down. A playoff berth, Joseph is making his mark. He's been a fixture in the lineup for the past 25 games, often paired up with Kris Letang on the top defensive pairing. He's making the most of his time on the ice, averaging over 16 minutes per game.

Joseph's impact goes beyond the scoresheet. Just take the recent game against the Washington Capitals, where he scored the game-winning goal with a slick assist from Letang.

Joseph and Letang are also roommates off the ice, and their chemistry is definitely translating onto the ice.

So, as the Penguins continue their push for a playoff spot, players like Joseph are stepping up big time. It's proof that sometimes, it's the unsung heroes making the simple plays that can turn the tide in a game.
April 7   |   69 answers
Young defensmen PO Joseph stepping into a bigger role down the stretch

What do you think has been the most significant factor in P.O. Joseph's recent success with the Pittsburgh Penguins?

Ice Time1420.3 %
Chemistry2029 %
Personal Development3550.7 %
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