2013: General Penguins Discussion (Prospects, Current Roster, Salary Cap, Line-Up, Free Agency, etc)

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Post #1 by Roger Sterling » Wed Mar 06, 2013 5:18 pm

LOL, thank you NJ Devils.

They claimed the useless fuck that is Tom Kostopoulos, off waivers.

Now Shero HAS to trade for someone that isn't useless. Or he keeps Beau and DJ as the rotating 13th man for forwards. Maybe if Megna or Thompson play well enough, they'll get called up, they won't have to worry about the waiver bs.
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Post #2 by Roger Sterling » Fri Mar 08, 2013 6:15 am

Roger Sterling wrote:Was browsing the Boreds prospect thread and yeah...we need some talent in the WBS squad for forwards. On D we're ok, they're one of the best in the league I think, but adding D'Agostino would be a huge boost since he will likely bring that offense with him and a solid all around ability.

Hanowski will be an awesome addition and I am curious if the guy finally added another gear or two to his speed, really hope so.

Agostino joining would be nice, I think he's finishing his degree early, but he's a guy that wants to take advantage of the schooling stuff so I expect him to maybe start his masters or something, 1st year of it anyway and then leave and finish that up during the summers, etc.

But there are some UFA's I would love for Shero to target.

Parker Milner - Boston College Goaltender - Pittsburgh born, his stats are unreal.
Antoine Laganiere - Plays with Agostino, 6'4" with huge reach and the last 2yrs he's been damn good and he's a C, he was at the Pens camp and then the Oilers and in 2011 he was at the Nucks camp, might be this year's big UFA out of College along with Milner. He's 22yrs old.
Jeremy Langlois - A RW/RH guy that is having a damn good year, he's scored 28 goals so far in the past 66 games, 11 this year and 17 the year before. He's on the small side 6' and under 180lbs, but he could be a good consolation prize if Shero missed out on Laganiere.
Andrej Sustr - Huge guy that doesn't suck, could be the guy that bucks our trend of shitty d-men that are huge (McKenna, Valabik, etc). He was at the Pens camp and plays with Archibald.


I'm not sure if Sustr is leaving school but like Laganiere, the Pens have a prospect playing with each guy. If I could, I would definitely ask the kid to sell the Penguins on them and try to get them both in Pittsburgh, if we miss out on Milner, that's fine, Murray & Maguire might be half decent, they have a better upside than Killeen.

It's pretty clear that we have shit for centers that are close to playing in the AHL. Blueger is going to be in college a while and Sundqvist might not come over for a year or two. So that leaves who? Uher doesn't play C anymore and Marcantuoni has been incredibly unimpressive and he's a W/C. We need a natural C in the system that is closer to being ready than those guys, that could be a guy like Laganiere.

Shero did clean some house this year, either by choice or not.

Out: Sneep, Strait, Lovejoy, Rogalski, and Tangradi
In: No one, Boychuk was a waiver pick up and he's likely gone soon.

Defense depth chart in the AHL is now: Grant, Samuelsson, Morrow, and Dumoulin.
ECHL: McNeill
Junior/College: D'Agostino, Velischek, Seymour, Harrington, Pouliot, and Maatta.

Next year, joining WBS...


D'Agostino & Harrington

So in WBS: D'Agostino, Harrington, Morrow, Dumoulin, Samuelsson, and Grant.

Guys in bold are veterans at this point.




Just to add to this, I wouldn't mind Eriah Hayes and maybe Ryan Walter (Archibald's linemate). Shero has some contract spots since he lost a few guys - Kostopoulos, Sneep, Strait, Lovejoy, Tangradi, and Boychuk. 4 of them were legit spots since the others were recent signings.
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Post #3 by Roger Sterling » Fri Mar 08, 2013 6:54 am

Yahoo writer makes Rossi look like an idiot, this guy is awesome, Rossi is an idiot and this guy does it with facts.

COMMENTARY | The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review's Rob Rossi christened the maiden voyage of the Pittsburgh Penguins' 2013 trade rumor season by smashing a bottle of Jack Johnson over the bow of the league's 20th-ranked defense Monday.
From Rossi's blog,

"This past summer, while pursuing free-agent defenseman Ryan Suter, the Penguins envisioned pairing Letang with an elite partner.
"Jack Johnson, 26, could potentially fit that description."

While a defensive upgrade should absolutely be on the Penguins radar--the team has allowed three or more goals against in seven of its last eight games, including six goals against in three separate instances--Johnson's cap hit and production hardly scream "elite."

At $4.35 million per season through 2018, Johnson's contract is not an easy one to digest, even if relatively cap-friendly. His stats are no better. The former third-overall pick is a career minus-95, was traded out of Los Angeles a season ago and has negative Corsi numbers this season in Columbus, where he was averaging more than 26:00 per game before sustaining a shoulder injury in late February.
Pittsburgh needs to make an upgrade or several, and the blue line isn't a bad place to start.


However, instead of floating 21-year-old defenseman Simon Despres' name as potential trade bait, the Pens could upgrade their top-four by promoting Despres from an occasional healthy scratch to an everyday, 20:00 minute-per-game defenseman.

Despres, the Penguins' first-round pick (30th overall) in 2009, is in his first full season of NHL action in 2013. The 6'4", 215 pound defenseman has two goals, six points and a plus-eight rating in 17 games this year, averaging 13:51 TOI per game.

Despres was a touted offensive defenseman in his junior career with the Saint John Sea Dogs of the QMJHL and has put that ability on display this season (perhaps never better than in assisting on Brandon Sutter's overtime winner against the Montreal Canadiens). Surprisingly, though, he has also provided consistent, aggressive physical play in his own zone this year, answering questions about his defensive acumen.
Given his potential and production so far, Despres has earned more minutes and more responsibility.

In his limited minutes thus far, Despres has provided stable if not stellar defensive play. His plus-eight rating leads all Penguins defensemen, and the team is 13-4 in games in which Despres is in the lineup (compared to a 2-4 record in six games without him).

Despres also has the best on-ice Corsi rating (a measure of a player's shot differential expressed over a 60-minute average) of all Penguins defensemen, and the fifth best on-ice Corsi on the team.
While this number is massaged by his sometimes favorable match-ups, the numbers are still excellent for a rookie defender.

If Despres' numbers in his first full season aren't enough to take his name out of the trade rumor mill, his physical tools and contract status ought to do the trick.
Despres is the one of two Penguins defensemen to stand 6'4" or taller (fellow rookie Robert Bortuzzo is the other) and his offensive production could stand second only to Kris Letang when he begins to fully touch his NHL potential.

It's for that reason that Despres has often been called a potential partner for Letang, if not the insurance policy for Letang's potential departure which prompted the initial call for Johnson.
Where's Johnson's contract is a detriment to retaining Letang, Despres' deal is a strength both for the Penguins and for their hopes of re-signing Letang and center Evgeni Malkin. Despres has one year left on his entry-level deal at $840,000.


If the Pens believe Despres can be a long-term option, signing him to an initially friendly deal should be easy enough. Penguins GM Ray Shero has been able to lock players down to team-friendly deals as though he is able to see their future production before anyone else.

Shero signed winger James Neal to a six-year extension in the middle of the 2011-12 season, a seemingly sweet deal for a player who at the time had never cracked 30 goals in a season. Neal finished with 40 goals last year, fourth-most in the NHL, and is second in the league in goals in 2013.
Shero's eye for talent has led to a few high-value extensions such as Neal's, and Despres has the pedigree and tools to be a player on Neal's level.

Signing Despres to a team-friendly contract, perhaps as early as this season, would mitigate the need for insuring against Letang's next contract by giving the Penguins the cap space to retain Letang in the first place.
They might even get an elite partner to pair him with in the process.

James Conley covers the Pittsburgh Penguins for the Yahoo! Contributor Network and is a Penguins contributor at The Hockey Writers and Editor at SB Nation's Pensburgh. He owns the Pittsburgh Sports Blog Slew Footers and has attended Penguins home games with credentials.
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Post #4 by Roger Sterling » Sat Mar 09, 2013 5:26 pm

I doubt the Getzlaf deal has any effect on Malkin's contract. 8 is the longest term you can get in the new CBA, I expect Geno to do the same as Sid.

Probably something like 8yrs/70m.

Letang on the other hand, he might cost the Pens 5m/yr. Hopefully not more than that. I'd gladly do 8yrs/40m. He just had a kid and is starting his family and now moving around might not be in his best interest, this does factor in a lot.

8yrs for both would take Letang and Malkin into 34yrs old. That's still pretty damn good.

Chara is 35 and still a damn good player, so Letang could probably still be a potent defenseman. But I could see why Shero would be hesitant on giving him 8 and they settle on 5yrs/27.5m (5.5m/yr).
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Post #5 by Roger Sterling » Sun Mar 10, 2013 10:25 am

At the half way point, the Pens have a 3.56 goals a game average and a 3.0 goals against average. That's best goals for and 24th for goals against.

A fine job Bylsma & Reirden have done.

Sit Engelland and Orpik for a game or two, play Eaton and Borts.
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Post #6 by Roger Sterling » Mon Mar 11, 2013 12:35 am

The Penguins will be without Evgeni Malkin for 1-2 weeks because of what coach Dan Bylsma would only describe as “an upper-body injury” — almost surely the right shoulder — Sunday night after the 6-1 rout of the New York Islanders at Consol Energy Center.

Bylsma did not disclose any specifics related to the injury, but the prognosis for recovery was new. He also confirmed earlier in the day that this injury has not come with any new concussion symptoms. Malkin recently missed four games to a concussion, returning March 4.

“There is not a concern,” Bylsma said of a possible new concussion. “Just an upper-body injury.”

Read more: http://triblive.com/sports/penguins/3634105-85/malkin-injury-penguins#ixzz2NCcSAD55
Follow us: @triblive on Twitter | triblive on Facebook


The Penguins are on a roll these days, but one facet of their game remains a problem: Penalty killing. Coach Dan Bylsma has identified a couple of areas of concern with that unit. Perhaps the biggest problem in recent games has been an inability to win faceoffs. “We have lost a lot of faceoffs,” Bylsma said. “That has led to zone time.” Time, incidentally, is the other issue. The Penguins have always subscribed to a Bylsma adage that aggressiveness in the first 8 seconds of an opponent's power play is beneficial. “Getting clears in the first 8 seconds,” Bylsma responded when asked about the biggest problems on the penalty killing unit. “Being aggressive and getting the puck down the ice. We've failed a lot of clearing attempts, too. That leads to zone time against dangerous power plays. We've got to be better.”

Read more: http://triblive.com/sports/penguins/3632425-85/bylsma-penguins-center#ixzz2NCclPFBt
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Post #7 by Roger Sterling » Mon Mar 11, 2013 12:40 am

Time for Jeffrey to step up, I think he works best on that 2nd line over Sutter.

Kunitz, Crosby, Neal/Dupuis
Bennett, Jeffrey, Neal/Dupuis
Cooke, Sutter, Kennedy
Glass, Vitale, Adams

I like Engo but the defense definitely looked better without him. I think Engo has been physical and a solid fighter but he's a step behind the play at times and his defensive awareness has been a little off. Eaton has been fantastic each time he's played. I'd rather Despres and Eaton stayed in.

Orpik, Martin
Despres, Letang
Niskanen, Eaton
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Post #8 by Roger Sterling » Mon Mar 11, 2013 1:14 am

Who do you guys want at the draft so far?


I wouldn't mind some players with great bloodlines being on Shero's radar.


[SIZE="6"]Anthony Mantha - LW[/size]
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HT/WT: 6'3" 200lbs
Shot: Lefty
NHL Relatives: Andre Pronovost (No relation to Moe Mantha)

You have to play your own game, but whom in the NHL do you watch because his game is a model for what you're trying to become?

"I am a Montreal fan but I also watch the Pittsburgh Penguins because not only do they have guys like Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, but they also have had guys like Jordan Staal [who is now with the Carolina Hurricanes]. For the more defensive part of the game, I like watching him but he also has hands and can score goals.."


talented shooter brings an impressive package of size, speed and skill .. tall, smooth, balanced skater with very good top speed .. and gets there rapidly thanks to a deceptive acceleration burst – masked a bit due to efficient mechanics .. solid crossover form – body retains shape in turns, cuts, pivots .. able to get outside defenders propelled by a swift change of pace .. bit of a ‘lurk in the weeds’ type – prowling on the edges – with a knack of popping up in a prime shooting area .. boasts a deceptively fast release on his wristshots and snappers, accentuated by a large wingspan .. retains his strength and skill at full stretch .. packs a terrific release – gets real wang on his wrister – all arms, wrists and technique .. real fluid mechanics .. setup footwork for his shot is subtle – uses quick, short strides to get body prepared quicker .. adept firing off his inside foot a la Mark Messier .. disguises intentions well – doesn’t telegraph if he’s readying for a shot or a deke .. quite adept at selling the shot and then making a no-look pass .. shows imagination as a playmaker which adds to his unpredictability .. poised and creative in-tight 1-on-1 on a goalie .. tends to operate at his own pace .. will need continued work on tempo, learning to assess options and make decisions quicker .. will also require a more complete game at the next level – doesn’t bring much energy or resolve in the defensive zone yet .. goes flat in defending sequences – relying on getting long stick and reach in lanes .. floats high in the zone, observing the cycle action – and can leak out prematurely .. does exhibit spots of physical play – frame is large and sturdy – and can create initial operating space when he applies himself – will engage contact on shoulder-to-shoulder bouts to win possession .. demonstrates good strength and power potential .. can be more tenacious, compete harder, get nastier at times .. doesn’t use his size away from the puck consistently – just sporadically .. also tends to lose steam once plays fizzle – won’t sustain compete level after being dispossessed.

http://www.mckeenshockey.com/draft-blog/val-dor-sniper-anthony-mantha-scoring-respect/
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Post #9 by Roger Sterling » Mon Mar 11, 2013 1:34 am

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Wayne Gretzky wrote:"But in my mind, I don't think there's any question Sidney Crosby is the best all-around player in the game. His hockey sense is so strong and so solid, combined with his God-gifted talent of being able to see the ice, see the entire picture in front of him. And, most importantly, I don't care how good you are, if you don't have a work ethic, it doesn't matter. There's no question that each and every game, he's one of the hardest-working guys on the ice. In my mind, he's the best player in the game today."


"For him to be able to get through all that and have the wherewithal to still have the capacity he plays with, that's impressive," Gretzky said. "And the thing about him -- he plays in all the dirty areas. He's never hesitant to go to the boards, go to the corners or go to the front of the net. As good as he is and as much finesse as he has, he's somewhat of a grinder, too, like a Messier- or a Bobby Clarke-style in the sense that he'll go anywhere to get the job done. That's what Sidney does. In my opinion, he leaps above anybody else, and there's some great players in the game today."

And that's just it, isn't it? Despite the concussion scare, Crosby still goes to the net hard.

http://espn.go.com/nhl/story/_/id/9036140/pittsburgh-penguins-sidney-crosby-back-best-player-world
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Post #10 by Roger Sterling » Mon Mar 11, 2013 4:54 pm

So no Malkin for 1-2 weeks, we'll be without him against the Bruins, Rangers and Leafs this week and maybe the Bruins next week and the Caps. Hopefully he's back for the Isles game though, get a chance to just brutalize them with Sid.
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Post #11 by Roger Sterling » Tue Mar 12, 2013 2:30 pm

[NHLCOM]catid=1364&id=218163&cmpid=embed-share-video[/NHLCOM]

Katie looks old.
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Post #12 by Roger Sterling » Wed Mar 13, 2013 1:30 am

So updated record with and without Despres.

15-4 - With Despres.
4-4 - Without Despres.
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Post #13 by Roger Sterling » Wed Mar 13, 2013 6:10 pm

Nick Johnson is on waivers, I'd claim him if I am Shero. He'd be a good depth guy on the 4th line over Adams or even Glass for some games and an option over TK, so we can finally bench his ass for a few games. It always sucked how he never got a proper shot but he's a guy that has a good shot and can play the Pens system.
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Post #14 by Roger Sterling » Fri Mar 15, 2013 8:53 pm

Phoenix Coyotes General Manager Don Maloney announced today that the Coyotes have signed defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson to a six-year contract. As per club policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.
http://coyotes.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=660455

EDIT: per Dreger, $5.5 million AAV


Ok so this one definitely impacts Letang's future contract. We're looking at 6m/yr.
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Post #15 by thejew09 » Sat Mar 16, 2013 12:09 pm

I guessing Letang gets 6.25 or 6.5 per year. Maybe 6.0, but nothing less than that. I just hope he's locked up for 8 years with whatever deal he gets
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Post #16 by Roger Sterling » Tue Mar 19, 2013 2:53 am

So the Class of 2013 Free Agents just got really shitty.

  • Brad Boyes - 24pts in 28gms
  • Damien Brunner - 20pts in 29gms
  • Nathan Horton - 16pts in 27gms
  • David Clarkson - 19pts in 29gms
  • Alex Semin - 29pts in 27gms
  • Viktor Stalberg - 16pts in 28gms
  • Clarke MacArthur - 15pts in 26gms
  • Brenden Morrow - 11pts in 25gms
  • Mason Raymond - 14pts in 27gms
  • Jarome Iginla - 19pts in 26gms
  • Jaromir Jagr - 18pts in 26gms

Boyes might just end up re-signing with the Islanders but he wouldn't be a bad option, he's having a rebound year. I would still love to get Stalberg on this team, for Malkin's line. Dude is huge, skates insanely well for a guy his build and has a good scoring touch. If anything, he would also look amazing with Sutter.

Outside of that, I think Brunner stays with Detroit, but Morrow might come to the Pens for a cheap 1-2yr deal, he's the same age as Kunitz, but a more productive career and a higher ceiling for what he can put up with his resume.

I would let Cooke and Adams walk and trade Glass and Kennedy in the summer to add both of those guys, then retain Dupuis.

Kunitz, Crosby, Bennett
Morrow, Malkin, Neal
Stalberg, Sutter, Dupuis
Jeffrey, Vitale, *UFA*

Hell that 4th line UFA could be Colby Armstrong, at this point I am sure he'd take a good 1yr deal to come back to the Pens and be a vital part of the bottom 6.

I think Jarome ends up re-signing with the Flames, I would love to get him to the Pens, I'd take him over Iginla any day and go with a line-up like below but he'd have to take a big pay cut (4-4.5m/yr for 2-3yrs).

Kunitz, Crosby, Iginla
Bennett, Malkin, Neal
Stalberg, Sutter, Dupuis
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Doug Murray for 2 draft picks

Post #17 by Gordon Shumway » Mon Mar 25, 2013 1:51 pm

Love this pick up.
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Post #18 by Gordon Shumway » Mon Mar 25, 2013 1:52 pm

2 2nd rounders, 2nd is on the condition Murray re-signs.
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Post #19 by thejew09 » Mon Mar 25, 2013 3:27 pm

This trade I like. Although Shero seems to love acquiring aging washed up players. Both of these trades would have been great two years ago, but not as much today. So far this season is reminiscent of 08-09, Shero acquires aging winger (Guerin, Morrow), aging defender (Boucher, Murray) and prime aged winger (Kunitz, no one so far this year). Hoping Morrow and Murray revitalize on our team and play vital roles. Though I hope Despres isn't pushed out of the lineup...

Kunitz - Crosby - Dupuis
Morrow/Bennett - Malkin - Neal
Bennett/Morrow - Sutter - Kennedy
Cooke - Vitale - Adams
*Glass, Jeffrey

Letang - Niskanen
Orpik - Martin
Murray - Despres/Eaton/Engelland/Bortuzzo

Team has a lot more depth now. Hope that D sorts itself out though. Also, we have some extra bodies on the roster now, perhaps Shero isn't done dealing yet. Hoping Kennedy or Glass (or both) are moved as part of a package for a better winger.
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Number change roll call due to recent pickups.

Post #20 by Gordon Shumway » Mon Mar 25, 2013 3:29 pm

Douglas Murray: #3

Brenden Morrow: #10

Tanner Glass: #15

Dustin Jeffrey: #17.
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Post #21 by Roger Sterling » Mon Mar 25, 2013 4:23 pm

Jeffrey actually changed his? Weird.
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Post #22 by Roger Sterling » Mon Mar 25, 2013 4:58 pm

I think Murray is more washed up than Morrow, but we'll see. This doesn't really hurt the team in any case, I am hoping Shero goes out and signs like a few prospect free agents like Milner, Laganiere and Straka and that off sets the loss of the picks. The Morrow trade though, yeah Joe could be a solid player some day, but that was the problem...some day. Shero is in a win now mode with 3 playoff exits that were way too early, he had to do something this year.

While Murray and Morrow aren't what we want, it adds size, grit, and leadership and a ton of toughness to the line-up. We better not see ass clowns like Simmonds standing in front of Fleury with guys like that in the line-up, Murray has to be our crease clearer and log a ton of PK minutes to keep Orpik more fresh. -

But yeah, I'd gladly take Straka, Laganiere and Milner over the two 2nd's and the 5th.
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Post #23 by Roger Sterling » Mon Mar 25, 2013 5:00 pm

I love how much of a fucktard Scott Cullen is at TSN.

Hawks retain the #1 spot in the power ranking. Pens are 12-0 in their past 12 games, now 2nd. They were 5th last week. They've been perfect this month so far while the Hawks are 7-3 in their past 10. Those rankings are stupid, granted, but man the disrespect is just moronic.
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Post #24 by Gordon Shumway » Mon Mar 25, 2013 5:29 pm

Jesus titty fucking monkey jerking anal raping muck spreading circle jerking kiddy fingering Grandma rug munching MILF motor boating Christ is Murray huge he's only 6-3 245 dude looks like an NFL defensive linesman.
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Post #25 by Roger Sterling » Mon Mar 25, 2013 5:30 pm

Douglas Murray is definitely a monster. 6'3" 245lbs is massive, that is pretty much a linebacker on skates.

He also fucked Tiger Wood's ex wife, lol.
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Post #26 by Gordon Shumway » Mon Mar 25, 2013 5:34 pm

He looks like Thor, don't forget that part.
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Post #27 by Roger Sterling » Mon Mar 25, 2013 6:08 pm

BIG BLUE wrote:reminds me of the Hal Parminder Gill days


You spelled his first name wrong, it's Halpreet Singh Gill.
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Post #28 by Gordon Shumway » Mon Mar 25, 2013 6:21 pm

Roger Sterling wrote:So the Class of 2013 Free Agents just got really shitty.

  • Brad Boyes - 24pts in 28gms
  • Damien Brunner - 20pts in 29gms
  • Nathan Horton - 16pts in 27gms
  • David Clarkson - 19pts in 29gms
  • Alex Semin - 29pts in 27gms
  • Viktor Stalberg - 16pts in 28gms
  • Clarke MacArthur - 15pts in 26gms
  • Brenden Morrow - 11pts in 25gms
  • Mason Raymond - 14pts in 27gms
  • Jarome Iginla - 19pts in 26gms
  • Jaromir Jagr - 18pts in 26gms

Boyes might just end up re-signing with the Islanders but he wouldn't be a bad option, he's having a rebound year. I would still love to get Stalberg on this team, for Malkin's line. Dude is huge, skates insanely well for a guy his build and has a good scoring touch. If anything, he would also look amazing with Sutter.

Outside of that, I think Brunner stays with Detroit, but Morrow might come to the Pens for a cheap 1-2yr deal, he's the same age as Kunitz, but a more productive career and a higher ceiling for what he can put up with his resume.

I would let Cooke and Adams walk and trade Glass and Kennedy in the summer to add both of those guys, then retain Dupuis.

Kunitz, Crosby, Bennett
Morrow, Malkin, Neal
Stalberg, Sutter, Dupuis
Jeffrey, Vitale, *UFA*

Hell that 4th line UFA could be Colby Armstrong, at this point I am sure he'd take a good 1yr deal to come back to the Pens and be a vital part of the bottom 6.

I think Jarome ends up re-signing with the Flames, I would love to get him to the Pens, I'd take him over Iginla any day and go with a line-up like below but he'd have to take a big pay cut (4-4.5m/yr for 2-3yrs).

Kunitz, Crosby, Iginla
Bennett, Malkin, Neal
Stalberg, Sutter, Dupuis


Scratch off Jizz, Staalonia just gave him 5 yrs 7 mill per. :busky:
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Post #29 by Roger Sterling » Mon Mar 25, 2013 6:26 pm

Yeah, 7m/yr is a lot for Alex. Would have liked him on the Pens at around 5m/yr but yeah he fits with the Canes. They have like 6m in cap space next season.
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Post #30 by Gordon Shumway » Mon Mar 25, 2013 8:45 pm

Roger Sterling wrote:You spelled his first name wrong, it's Halpreet Singh Gill.


Actually it's Awesome Superballs Carlos SpicyWeiner Launchpad McQuack Odin Zeus Kull the Conquer Conan Halpreet Singh Gill. :smuglanne:
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Post #31 by Roger Sterling » Tue Mar 26, 2013 12:23 am

This is a good post about how Morrow got hyped as much as he did as a prospect. Jmelm is a good poster, one of the few good ones there.

Yeah, it seems that there have been some (and mostly) fan-generated expectations of Joe Morrow. The hype got built up, and certain expectations were made by fans and posters on these boards (not the Pens' scouts, but fans) about exactly what type of player Joe Morrow was. So let's take the words from the Pens own scouts & management....

At the time of the draft, they did some draft videos with Randy Sexton. Upon being interviewed, Sexton described Morrow as more of a trigger-man, and not so much of a quarter-back. Obviously, Joe still has overall skills that will help him be effective on a PP, but fans & posters on this board devised their own expectations of Joe Morrow that were not necessarily on the same page as the Pens' own views of this player. (and I like Joe Morrow, so I'm just giving the unbiased reality-check here).

I also said after the draft, when a lot of people were lamenting the selections of Pouliot at #8 and two Dmen overall in the 1st round of the draft, that: "If the Pens really felt that Joe Morrow was the next Duncan Keith, and Simon Despres was the next Brent Seabrook" (i.e. elite, all-world, first-pairing Dmen) "then the Pens would probably not have drafted 2 more Dmen in the first round". To this statement, the responses that I got were mostly of the "that's a good & vaild point" variety.

The truth is: Morrow is NOT an elite prospect (aka blue-chip, top-15/20 prospect in the league overall, etc). For example, he did not make last year's WJC Olympic team or named top 1 or 2 Dmen in the WHL last year). Now the difference is: Simon Despres has stepped in and surprised all of us with either just how good he has been this year, or how quickly & seamlessly he has transition. Harrington has continued his ascension into one of the best (and seemingly most underrated) prospects in the league, and Pouliot and Maatta have also continued to improve their stock and gain experience. We have also had a guy like Robert Bortuzzo step in and, despite not getting enough ice-time to go around, we know this guy is a legit NHL defenseman for us, and potentially for a long time; and even a surprise like Samuelsson, a great debut as a pro for Biran Dumoulin, and maybe a real decent prospect in D
Agostino. Morrow, conversely, didn't open new eyes this year as an elite prospect. And while this doesn't mean that he can't become a great player one day, his ultimate/overall upside may not be as high as some of the other guys in our system

And then, the most forgotten men in this: Paul Martin and Matt Niskanen: 1) Martin: the way he has turned his game around and contributed 5-on-5, PK, and perhaps most surprisingly the PP, suggests that this is a player who may very well not only finish out his contract here in PGH, but perhaps even be extended (Brooks and his salary will be gone by then, and hopefully the cap bounces up after next year, etc.). Martin has been a revelation, and has taken that right-side & PP spot for the next few years that some may have had Joe Morrow pencilled in for. 2) Matt Niskanen has FULLY turned around from being a reclammation project to a full-blown legit top-4 Dman who can play right or left side, and can play on the PP unit. He's also a better PK & 5-v-5 player than Morrow is now, even if he doesn't have quite the shot or quite the speed. So again, Niskanen may very well be a player that we look to extend for several more seasons. So when you factor in even one, or perhaps both, of Martin & Nisky, PLUS all the other great prospects we have on D, Morrow may not have really had a spot here. (Yes, he was one of our "top-6 prospects", but obviously wans't one of our top-6 Dmen in our organization overall when you factorin in guys who could be here medium-long term: Letang, Niskanen, Martin, Despres, Pouliot, Dumoulin, Bortuzzo, Maatta, Samuelsson and D'Agostino. Of that group, Morrow may well have been rated #7 or #8)

And of course: I would have rather traded Morrow for an established guy like Stewart or Iginla, or top prospect like Coyle, Niederreiter or Filip Forsberg , but he's not a top-tier guy like them, and obviously those guys were not available for the price Shero was willing to pay. And while Shero didn't mention the other guys they were looking at, but Brendan was the player we could get who would help our team now and wouldn't really hurt it in the long run. And let's not forget: this is a deep draft, and moving from the 5th round up to the 3rd does help. We may very well be able to find the next Morrow or GoGo to replace them with one of our 2nd/3rd round picks, or have those picks be used in a move-up scenario.

And finally, I will end my treatise here: people are forgetting the much maligned Tyler Kennedy. It's very possible that Brendan Morrow essentially bumps TK out of the 3rd line spot (Bennet would skate on RW there, his natural position), and TK could absolutely garner something like a 3rd round pick, or even a 2nd rounder, this year, because he is not a rental and is an RFA this year. So the deal *might* essentially be Brendan Morrow + 3rd rounder (plus another 2nd/3rd rounder) for Joe Morrow, because people wanted Kennedy out anyway. So let's wait and see folks.
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Post #32 by thejew09 » Tue Mar 26, 2013 1:57 pm

I like Iginla, Horton and Boyes for our top 6 from that list, and MacArthur for our third line perhaps. I still feel like Stalberg is just a glorified 3rd liner. One of those guys who looks great in his role, then you give him a larger role on a team's second line and it exposes all of his weaknesses. Kinda like Chris Higgins.
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Post #33 by thejew09 » Tue Mar 26, 2013 2:04 pm

That was a great post. Only part I'm kind of disagree with is the value the 2nd/3rd picks he was talking about. We could get another Gogo, or another Rust/CPZ. The latter are more likely.
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Post #34 by Roger Sterling » Tue Mar 26, 2013 2:11 pm

thejew09 wrote:I like Iginla, Horton and Boyes for our top 6 from that list, and MacArthur for our third line perhaps. I still feel like Stalberg is just a glorified 3rd liner. One of those guys who looks great in his role, then you give him a larger role on a team's second line and it exposes all of his weaknesses. Kinda like Chris Higgins.


Except he's looked good everywhere for the Hawks and he looked good in Toronto but they had to give to get (Versteeg trade). He hits, fights, and is a solid all around player. He's going to get a raise, not a lot, but a fairly decent one. He's a guy that brings size and offense to a bottom 6. If you are looking at MacArthur for the Pens bottom 6, he's not going to go for that. I think Stalberg ends up staying with Chicago, MacArthur goes to a team that needs help in their top 6 (I think he's Winnipeg bound, just a hunch).

Boyes is going to get a raise after the year he is having with the Islanders, don't be shocked if the Red Wings offer him a contract and he goes there, they are getting old and need some help with offensive creativity. Boyes brings that. Iginla is likely staying in Calgary after he has his stint elsewhere to win a Cup, I just see it like that, just like Morrow. Morrow is likely here for a cup of coffee to win a cup and then he goes back to Dallas to take on a lesser role with them.

The only realistic option the Pens might have is Horton. That all depends on how the Bruins cap structure is at next season. Ideally, Shero should look at re-signing Cooke and Dupuis.

Kunitz, Crosby, *UFA*
Bennett, Malkin, Neal
Cooke, Sutter, Dupuis
Glass, Vitale, Jeffrey

Horton would fit on that 1st line perfectly with Sid. I say Horton because he's going to price himself out of Boston. Even if he re-ups for the same contract, the Bruins have 7m in cap space and they need to re-sign both of their goaltenders. Rask is easily a 5m+ guy and Khudobin is going to be closer to 1.5m/yr. You figure that in and the Bruins might have to shed salary just to make ends meet for that 1 season.

I would gladly take Nathan Horton at a 3yr deal at 4.5m/yr. It's a 500k raise though, BUT...he gets a shot to play on a team that has the 2 best centers in the game.

Just my predictions anyway...here's where I think the UFA's I listed, end up:

Jerome Iginla: Back to Calgary after his Cup run.
Brad Boyes: Either re-signs with the Islanders or bolts for Detroit.
Viktor Stalberg: Chicago needs depth and size, he brings it, why give up on him now?
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Post #35 by Roger Sterling » Tue Mar 26, 2013 2:15 pm

I don't think NJ can afford to give up on Clarkson, they need all the offense they can get. Brunner is likely going to stay with Detroit and Mason Raymond is a waste of time, his career averages out to the same numbers Tyler Kennedy has put up, but TK is better defensively, more aggressive of a player, and he's put up his numbers playing on the 3rd line while Mason got a lot more top 6 minutes while also being in the bottom 6.

I think the biggest target Ray goes for is Horton, he's the best fit. Sid needs a guy that can drive the net and shoot, be a big body along the boards. Horton provides that, he has more of a finisher's touch than Dupuis does. Boyes is a playmaker, MacArthur can shoot pretty well, Clarkson seems like a guy that might not do well outside of the Devils (man that happens a lot with that team) and Brunner risks the Leino effect.

Am I making sense or do I sound off with this analysis?
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Post #36 by Roger Sterling » Tue Mar 26, 2013 2:44 pm

thejew09 wrote:That was a great post. Only part I'm kind of disagree with is the value the 2nd/3rd picks he was talking about. We could get another Gogo, or another Rust/CPZ. The latter are more likely.


Here's a twist: Bryan Rust had an amazing year. He seems like a late bloomer. Look at his numbers with Notre Dame.

In each year, he played 40 games.
2010-11: 6g 13a 19pts
2011-12: 5g 6a 11pts
2012-13: 15g 18a 33pts

This past season, he put up more points in 1yr than his previous two combined. That's some major progress for a guy that a lot of people wrote off. I still won't write the kid off, he's just 20yrs old, he's a project no doubt.

Read this.

Talent Analysis

Rust plays a high motor game that allows him to be effective in many different assignments all over the ice. He has excellent hockey sense but is not an overly creative forward, meaning he will produce offense but it will be through hardwork, playing to his strengths, and of course having complementary linemates. He rarely takes a penalty or makes a mistake on the ice and consequentially is often deployed when the game is on the line. His bread and butter is on the penalty kill, but he looks more than comfortable on the powerplay as well.


Now tell me he doesn't remind you of a potential Chris Kunitz.
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Post #37 by Roger Sterling » Tue Mar 26, 2013 2:55 pm

Losing the picks definitely sucks, but when you are a contender, you have to be ok with doing that once in a while. The last time Shero gave up this many picks was 2008, that was 5yrs ago. It's not like he's given up a lot this year too when you look at it.

Here's what we still have: 1st, 3rd (Wild), 3rd, 4th, 6th, and 7th. That's 6 out of 7 picks that the Penguins still have. That's if Shero doesn't make another move, the Sneep trade was basically Carl Sneep to Dallas for nothing because he won't play 10 games with the Stars this year before the season is out to get that 7th, kind of a bad move on Shero's part, but it's whatever.

Ben Lovejoy went for a 4th round pick for next year's draft, so next year the Pens have: 1st, 3rd, 4th, 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th.

The 2nd is out because there is a good shot the Pens make it past the 2nd round this year, if not, we keep our 2nd and the Sharks get the Pens 3rd. The good thing is, both of those picks are going to be super late anyway.

But yeah, there are some College FA's that I want Shero to go after. That would help off-set the loss of those picks when you go out and sign some guys that are closer to NHL ready with years of development under their belt vs kids that are still very early in their development and aren't physically mature yet.

My list would be...

Greg Carey - LW, 5'11" 195lbs (he's an elusive kid, goal scorer)
Shayne Taker - D, 6'4" 200+ lbs (puck mover, a pmd with a good shot, plays with Rust)
Eriah Hayes - F, 6'4" (powerforward, he plays a hard nosed game with balanced offense, screams Shero/Bylsma type)

Now, the Pens have 47 out of 50 for the contract limit, that will go up when Harrington, Hanowski (still needs to be signed), D'Agostino (still needs to be signed) all join WBS. Possibly Zlobin as well, that kid has nothing left to prove in the Q, he's a champion there, has vastly improved his game as well. So that's 4, putting the team at 51.

But when you figure in the fact that a lot of the UFA's might be gone, it gets better.

Possibly Out: Thiessen, Eaton, Morrow, Murray, Adams, TK

That would put the Pens at 45/50.

Shero can't sign all of them, but I would love it if he got 1F and 1D. Carey and Taker are most likely bets.
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Post #38 by Roger Sterling » Tue Mar 26, 2013 2:56 pm

Greg Carey, LW
Junior, St. Lawrence University

After leading (or co-leading) the Saints in scoring in his first two years, Greg Carey is on pace to make it three and eclipse the 50-point mark this season. He currently ranks second in the nation with 48 points and leads the nation with 26 goals, which includes his NCAA-leading 12 power-play goals in 34 games to date. He is part of the nation’s most prolific line combination that also includes senior Kyle Flanagan and junior Jeremy Wick. Carey’s most remarkable stat is that he has been held goalless in only 11 games so far this season. In St. Lawrence’s game versus Dartmouth on Feb. 23rd, Carey tied the school record for consecutive games (11) with a goal. Among the NHL teams that have shown an interest in Carey are the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Dallas Stars. He had a strong showing at the Maple Leafs' prospect camp this past summer and attended the Stars prospect camp in 2011.

Simply put, Carey is a goal-scorer that knows what to do with the puck when it’s on his stick. One of the things that makes Carey so dangerous with the puck is his wickedly quick shot and release. At times, he can make scoring goals look effortless and can score from just about anywhere. Carey is always a threat around the net, particularly in the slot, and is willing to pay the price in front, too. The Hamilton, ON native isn’t big (5’11”, 195 lbs.) in stature but he’s quick and elusive. Carey is a tough competitor that is willing to play the body when necessary. He possesses a junkyard dog-type of mentality when battling for pucks. Carey is an excellent skater with quick feet who transition's quite well. While he is noted more for his goal-scoring prowess, Carey is also an adept playmaker. He has great hands and puck-moving ability. Carey possesses great vision and does a very good job of reading and staying with plays. One area where Carey has improved over the course of his collegiate career is his defensive side. His excellent stick work allows him to effectively take away lanes and he has also shown a willingness to block shots.

Dan DeKeyser, D
Junior, Western Michigan University

Dan DeKeyser was the most coveted available collegiate free agent last season and that hasn’t changed this season. Among the teams heavily pursuing him are the Calgary Flames, the Detroit Red Wings and the Tampa Bay Lightning. DeKeyser opted to return to Western Michigan this season in large part due to the impending (and eventual) NHL lockout. His return has greatly benefited not only his Broncos team but his overall development, as well. To date, DeKeyser has played in 33 games, posting 15 points (two goals, 13 assists). He logs nearly 30 minutes of ice time per game playing alongside senior Luke Witkowski (TBL) as part of one of the nation’s most dominant defensive pairings.

The Clay Township, MI native has blossomed into one of college hockey’s top rearguards. And while he is a defensive defenseman, DeKeyser is by no means the stay-at-home type. He is very mobile, plays intelligently in all three zones, and can be seen jumping into plays when opportunities present themselves. At 6’3” and 198 pounds, DeKeyser has a good frame and one attribute that has had scouts clamoring to get glimpses of him is how well he uses that frame. DeKeyser uses his size, strength and tenacity quite effectively in wearing down opposing players and taking away time and space. This is particularly evident in his excellent play along the boards. DeKeyser is an agile skater with terrific feet and great balance. He moves equally well going north-south and east-west. His skating and feet also allow him to make smooth transitions and make the right plays. One attribute that sets DeKeyser apart from many other collegiate defensemen is his ability to control the tempo of the game. He sees the ice really well and possesses great hockey sense. His decision-making has continually improved with quicker and smarter reads and reactions. DeKeyser possesses a powerful shot and can get shots to the net. He has great hands and moves the puck exceedingly well, too.

Eric Hartzell, G
Senior, Quinnipiac University

One of the best stories in the NCAA this season is the Quinnipiac Bobcats. Quinnipiac recently captured their first ECAC regular season title since joining the conference in 2005-06 and one reason behind the team’s success is senior netminder, Eric Hartzell. The White Bear Lake, MN native, the top goaltending candidate for this year’s Hobey Baker Award, has started in 33 of the Bobcats’ 34 games to date and sports a 24-4-5 record that includes four shutouts. Hartzell’s 24 wins leads the nation and is also a new school single-season record. His 1.49 goals-against average ranks third nationally, while his .936 save percentage ranks seventh. He also ranks second in the nation with a .803 winning percentage. Hartzell’s most impressive stat is that he has allowed three or more goals in just four games so far this season. Not surprisingly, Hartzell’s stellar senior campaign has also caught the attention of several NHL teams. One team that has taken particular notice is the Philadelphia Flyers, whose prospect camp Hartzell attended this past summer.

Hartzell is a technically sound, 6’4”, 200-pound goaltender with a terrific glove. His large frame allows him to effectively economize his movements. Hartzell possesses very good reflexes, although he’s not overly quick in his lateral movements. His vastly improved ability to control rebounds and second and third chances have made him a more confident, consistent goaltender. That, in turn, has also made him a stabilizing presence on Quinnipiac’s back end. He has the ability to win games for his team and has shown that he can make the necessary saves at crucial times. Another aspect of Hartzell’s development that has contributed to his success is his approach to playing his position. He’s more methodical and has shown greater attention to detail. He is outstanding in his play down low and he covers his angles quite well. His reads and ability to track plays are also very good.

Eriah Hayes, RW
Senior, Minnesota State University-Mankato

Another great story coming out of the NCAA this season is Minnesota State-Mankato. The Mavericks are on pace to have their best season since joining the WCHA in 1999-2000. Among those leading the team is senior co-captain Eriah Hayes. The La Crescent, MN native currently leads Minnesota State-Mankato with 18 goals and ranks second on the team with 31 points in 34 games to date. His 11 power-play goals currently rank second nationally. Hayes began getting the attention of NHL teams two years ago and interest in the senior winger has grown since then. One team that could potentially land Hayes is the Chicago Blackhawks, whose prospect camp he has attended the last two summers.

Hayes is a rugged, hard-working, 6’4” and 210-pound power forward. Although Hayes is not afraid to mix things up, this season he has been able to strike a balance between his physicality and playing with discipline. He uses his size, strength and reach to great advantage, particularly in tight areas and is difficult to move off of the puck. One attribute that has had scouts really taking notice of Hayes is his shot. He possesses one of the hardest shots in all of college hockey and he shoots with great frequency. He also has great finishing ability. What separates Hayes from many other top scorers, particularly among those with big bodies, is how little energy he expends when creating or finishing plays. His skating and puck movements often times look effortless, and he effectively utilizes his given time and space. Hayes moves really well for a man his size and skates with long, powerful strides. His leadership and ability to set the tone of a game have been invaluable assets for Minnesota State-Mankato this season and they are qualities that Hayes could one day bring to his pro team.

Antoine Laganiere, RW
Senior, Yale University

Among the group of available free agent forwards this season, none has garnered as much NHL interest as Yale senior Antoine Laganiere. At least a dozen teams are vying for the Ile Cadieux, QC native’s services. Among the teams pursuing Laganiere is the Vancouver Canucks, whose prospect camp he attended in 2011. The Edmonton Oilers and the Pittsburgh Penguins are also among those showing interest. The senior winger attended both teams’ prospect camps last summer. Laganiere is currently third on the Bulldogs roster with 24 points (12 goals, 12 assists) in 29 games to date. He co-leads Yale with two game-winners and ranks second with six power-play goals.

Laganiere is a 6’4”, 197-pound power forward who uses his frame exceedingly well in creating space and opportunities. Where this is particularly noticeable is in his strong play in the dirty areas, an attribute that has made scouts take notice, as well. Laganiere takes full advantage of his size, reach and tremendous strength in maintaining both puck control and his positioning. He is not one to shy away from the physical aspects of the game. He can deliver solid checks and is aggressive on the forecheck. He is also a competitor. One notable improvement Laganiere has made since arriving at Yale is in his skating. He is an excellent skater with great mobility and skates with long, powerful strides. His added strength has greatly enhanced his speed and agility. Laganiere possesses great hands and a blisteringly hard shot. He can make nice, crisp passes, and along with his outstanding vision, can utilize open spaces quite effectively. He also has great finishing ability. One of Laganiere’s best assets is his stick, which he uses equally well in both offensive and defensive situations.

Drew LeBlanc, C
R-Senior, St. Cloud State University

St. Cloud State’s Drew LeBlanc was off to a great start in what was supposed to be his senior year last season before a horrendous leg injury versus Wisconsin on Nov. 5th, 2011 abruptly ended his season and forced him to red-shirt. Now healthy, LeBlanc has emerged as college hockey’s best comeback story and a prime candidate for this season’s Hobey Baker Award. The Hermantown, MN native has been the catalyst behind an outstanding Huskies squad that currently sits atop the WCHA standings. LeBlanc leads the nation with 33 assists and is tied for third with 44 points in 34 games to date. Despite his injury-shortened year last season, NHL interest in LeBlanc hasn’t diminished. The Chicago Blackhawks, who had tendered an offer to the red-shirted senior after his stellar 2010-11 campaign, is still in the picture. The Minnesota Wild, whose prospect camp LeBlanc attended last summer, also continue to show interest.

LeBlanc is a 6’0”, 195-pound playmaking center that plays an intelligent two-way game. He also possesses some of the best hands in all of college hockey. His superb passing skills and great vision allow him to make plays that few other collegians can make. And it’s an attribute that hasn’t been lost on scouts, either. LeBlanc’s decision-making is excellent. He makes few mistakes and thinks the game remarkably well. He also has the ability to make those around him better. Although LeBlanc is known more for his playmaking ability, he has shown a knack for scoring timely goals, as well. One attribute that sets LeBlanc apart from many other collegiate players is his ability to create time and space for his teammates. He can control the tempo of the game and, with his tremendous patience with the puck, can allow teammates the time get into the best possible positions. LeBlanc is an excellent skater that moves exceedingly well with the puck. While he isn’t exceedingly fast, LeBlanc does have good speed, acceleration and can transition quickly. LeBlanc, who is one of St. Cloud State’s co-captains, also possesses strong leadership qualities.

Rylan Schwartz, C
Senior, Colorado College

One of the questions surrounding Rylan Schwartz coming into this season was how effective he could be without his younger sibling, Jaden. Schwartz has resoundingly answered that question with a strong senior campaign that currently has him among the top point producers in the NCAA and squarely on the NHL's radar, as well. Among the teams already eyeing Schwartz are the San Jose Sharks and the St. Louis Blues, whose prospect camps he attended in the summer of 2012 and 2011, respectively. The Wilcox, SK native leads the Tigers with 42 points (15 goals, 27 assists) in 33 games to date. His 42 points has exceeded his total from last season. Schwartz currently centers Colorado College’s dynamic top line that includes junior Alex Krushelnyski and sophomore Charlie Taft.

Schwartz is a center on the small side (5’10”, 205 lbs.) that is equally adept at both setting up and finishing plays. He has established himself as not only the Tigers’ top face-off man and playmaker but also as a clutch goal scorer. He possesses great vision, hands, and can make some of the nicest tape-to-tape passes that you’ll ever see. One notable aspect of Schwartz’s development is how well he uses his strength; he is remarkably strong on his skates, which has greatly benefited his ability to protect and move with the puck. It has also enhanced his skating, adding power and more speed. Schwartz’s excellent stick work is among his best assets and one that has had NHL scouts taking notice. He utilizes his stick effectively in all three zones and it’s especially evident in Colorado College’s transition game. Another area where Schwartz has developed quite nicely is on the defensive side. He has outstanding defensive zone awareness and has become an effective penalty killer for the Tigers. While Schwartz isn’t an overly physical player, he is a fierce competitor that does plays with a bit of grit.

Shayne Taker, D
Junior, University of Notre Dame

Shayne Taker (pronounced “tacker” ;) is part of Notre Dame’s excellent and very mobile defensive corps. At 6’4” and 201 pounds, he is one of the Fighting Irish’s biggest rearguards. He and senior defensive partner Sam Calabrese have played together all season in both even strength and power-play situations. The Surrey, BC native has played in all 36 games to date, posting 13 points (one goal, 12 assists). Taker’s lone goal so far, a power-play tally, came back on Dec. 15th versus Bowling Green. His 13 points is nearly double what he posted last season. Taker began gaining NHL interest last season, and a number of teams continue to eye the junior defenseman. One of them is the Vancouver Canucks, whose prospect camp Taker attended this past summer.

Taker is an excellent skating, puck-moving defenseman. He plays a solid two-way game, but where he has really begun to blossom is on offense. This season, he sees regular time on Notre Dame’s power-play and can be seen jumping up into plays, as well. His growing offensive side hasn’t come at the expense of his outstanding defensive side, either. Taker has shown more confidence and patience with the puck and he’s making better decisions. That has resulted in smarter puck movement, especially in his outlet passes. Taker possesses a hard shot that has developed more velocity thanks to his added physical strength. One of Taker’s best attributes and one scouts have taken notice of is his skating. He is very mobile with good speed and acceleration. His noticeably improved feet have significantly enhanced his transitioning, while making his strides smoother. Taker is a fierce competitor that also brings a physical element to his game. While he’s not afraid to mix things up, Taker has also shown that he can play with discipline.

Ryan Walters, LW
Junior, University of Nebraska-Omaha

This time last season, Nebraska-Omaha winger Ryan Walters was barely on the NHL scouting radar. But that’s all changed for the Rosemount, MN native this season. Walters is in the midst of his best season as a Maverick and is a top candidate for this year’s Hobey Baker Award. Walters currently leads the nation with 49 points (21 goals, 28 assists) in 34 games to date. His 49 points are nearly double his total from last season. He also co-leads the nation with a plus-24 rating. Walters has been one of the nation’s most consistent point-producers, having been held pointless in just seven games so far this season. He has played much of the season alongside sophomore Josh Archibald (PIT), giving Nebraska-Omaha one of the nation’s most lethal scoring duos.

Walters is the quintessential late bloomer. His game has grown and developed through hard work, greater attention to detail, and playing to his strengths. At 6’0”, 196 pounds, Walters isn’t overly big but he uses his physical strength quite effectively at both ends of the ice. One notable area that has gotten the attention of scouts is the improvement of Walters’ puck skills, particularly where accuracy is concerned. He has developed a keen sense of being able to put the puck right where he wants it more consistently. That, coupled with his great vision, allows Walters to be equally dangerous in both finishing and setting up plays. He moves remarkably well in traffic and his ability to cycle the puck is also quite good. Although Walters doesn’t possess blazing speed, he is an excellent skater with very good feet that transitions very well. Another area of Walters’ game that has developed nicely is his defensive side. He has blossomed into an effective penalty killer for Nebraska-Omaha and he uses his stick exceedingly well in stripping pucks and taking away lanes.

Other notables: Mike Boivin, D – Senior, Colorado College; Austin Czarnik, F – Sophomore, Miami University; Kyle Flanagan, F – Senior, St. Lawrence University; Giancarlo Iuorio, F – Senior, Niagara University; Pat Mullane, F – Senior, Boston College; Nate Schmidt, D – Junior, University of Minnesota; Trevor van Riemsdyk, D – Sophomore, University of New Hampshire
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Post #39 by Roger Sterling » Tue Mar 26, 2013 3:25 pm

Jussi Jokinen is on waivers, if you are Shero and he falls to you on the waiver wire, do you make a claim? You add a guy that could rebound with you at 3m/yr. He's proven to be a 45-60+ winger/center. Someone would definitely need to go then, to make room even with the roster increase April 3rd.

Kunitz, Crosby, Dupuis
Morrow, Malkin, Neal
Jokinen, Sutter, Bennett
Cooke, Vitale, Kennedy

Ehn...not bad.

Maybe give Jeffrey a new home, trade him for a 2nd or a 3rd. That would give the Pens the roster space to keep Beau and Despres down to keep the roster at 23 and bring them up to get to 25. If you keep Jeffrey and add Jokinen you get to 24, that's 1 too many. Unless Bylsma/Shero put someone else on the IR as well.
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Post #40 by Roger Sterling » Tue Mar 26, 2013 4:53 pm

I think Boston wins this, but who do you think Shero will give up to get Iginla? They also have Kipper on the market as well.

The Flames need basically everything, their forward prospect pool is weak, their defense pool is weak, and their goaltending pool is weak.

The Bruins can offer a bit of everything to them, so can LA. There are 4 teams that Jerome said ok to, 2 EC and 2 WC - Chicago, LA, Pittsburgh, and Boston. I don't see Chicago really wanting to over spend either, so I think it's really between Boston and LA. The only way we get Iginla is if he changes his list of teams and says only Pittsburgh. You have to think he's seen what Ray has done and says ok that's the team that's most serious. But at this point, I really don't want to see Shero give up Beau or Despres or even Pouliot and Harrington.
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Post #41 by thejew09 » Tue Mar 26, 2013 6:37 pm

About as far I'd go for Iggy is Kennedy + Dumoulin + Jeffrey + 1st. Something to that effect. Or if they'd like, Kennedy + Dumoulin + 1st + 2014 3rd. But really, That's not even really worth it for Calgary. The low 1st has a good chance of at least being an NHL player, then there's Dumoulin who will hopefully be a top 4 D-man, and then Kennedy is a 3rd liner, and Jeffrey a 4th liner/3rd a long shot. If I were them I'd be hesitant to take that deal, and would rather deal with Boston (who can throw up something like Subban, Knight/Khoklachev, 1st + roster player).

No way do I even consider trading Despres or Bennett for Iginla, and I really would be against Pouliot or Maatta being tossed out there, or Harrington for that matter. In a few years once Orpik has completely burned out we'll need a guy like Harrington. Every team could use a Pouliot, or a jack-of-all-trades in Maatta.
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Post #42 by Roger Sterling » Tue Mar 26, 2013 6:46 pm

Yeah, I think Shero should stay out of this one.
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Post #43 by Gordon Shumway » Wed Mar 27, 2013 12:59 am

MOAR D?
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Post #44 by Roger Sterling » Sat Mar 30, 2013 11:53 pm

I knew that Iginla would get ice time with Malkin but I don't think he fits that line at all, that line needs a guy that drives the net and is good for garbage goals, Neal is the winger Malkin defers to while the 3rd forward drives the net and wreaks havoc. If they plan on using Jarome in that capacity, I can see him walking after this season. Iginla's game is perfect for Crosby's, it's why they look so good on a line together. I still want to see Morrow with that 2nd line. I know Dupuis has been good, but he could be a guy that could jump start Sutter's line as well. I still want to see this tried, yeah the 1st line has been great, but you have Iginla, a guy that has better hands than Dupuis ever will, use him with Sid.

Kunitz, Crosby, Iginla
Morrow, Malkin, Neal
Cooke, Sutter, Dupuis
Kennedy/Glass, Vitale, Adams
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Post #45 by Roger Sterling » Sun Mar 31, 2013 3:39 pm

So without Sid for at least 2-3 weeks (Stamkos will likely win the Art Ross thanks to this, it's all good...goal is the other trophy after 16 wins in the playoffs, anyway). So the line-up for a little SHOULD be:

Neal, Malkin, Iginla
Kunitz, Sutter, Dupuis
Cooke, Jeffrey, Kennedy
Glass, Vitale, Adams

At least we have Malkin back, I would move Neal to LW unless Iginla is comfortable there and he did say he played there when Fleury was on the team and he had to play LW, he also has played it on the powerplay. This is like the year we got Hossa all over again. Get a winger that is perfect for Sid, he gets hurt.
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Post #46 by Roger Sterling » Sun Mar 31, 2013 10:07 pm

How funny would it be if Agostino and Hanowsi both refused to sign with the Flames and Shero got them back for nothing?

LOL...gotta love College prospects.
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Post #47 by Roger Sterling » Mon Apr 01, 2013 1:19 am

So we are back to the wonderful duo of 2010-11 of - Kunitz, Jeffrey, Dupuis as our 2nd line.

I wonder if they can push this win streak with that.
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Post #48 by Gordon Shumway » Mon Apr 01, 2013 8:22 pm

Roger Sterling wrote:How funny would it be if Agostino and Hanowsi both refused to sign with the Flames and Shero got them back for nothing?

LOL...gotta love College prospects.


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