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Real season just beginning for Penguins

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PITTSBURGH (AP) - The Metropolitan Division champion Pittsburgh Penguins are ready for the postseason to begin.

Despite a rash of injuries that included significant absences by stars such as Evgeni Malkin, Kris Letang and Paul Martin, Pittsburgh posted the second-highest point total in franchise history and won the division easily.

While coach Dan Bylsma credited his team for finding a way to win with a constantly evolving lineup, he understands this season will be judged by what happens in the playoffs. Pittsburgh opens the postseason on Wednesday night in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals against Columbus.

The Penguins won all five meetings between the two clubs during the regular season, outscoring the Blue Jackets by a combined score of 16-8.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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