Now that the insufferable firing and hiring processes are completed, the fun can begin. It is the Penguins’ first draft under Jim Rutherford, and here is what they should do.
Fire whoever runs the Twitter account
The @penguins account should have tweeted this:
“Happy to be in Philly. Congrats to the Kings on winning the Cup and getting whatever player the Flyers draft this weekend.”
By the way, never forget:
— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) March 6, 2014
Before their pick, fire the scouting department
Imagine this: Jim Rutherford walks up to the podium, stares at the Penguins table, and screams into the mic, “YOU’RE ALL FUCKING FIRED.” In a perfect world, Ray Shero then runs up behind Rutherford and hits him with a steel chair.
Trade Matt Niskanen’s rights
Literally cannot wait to see who overpays for Niskanen. The new free-agent format might limit moves. Still should be worth a sixth-round pick.
Let Brooks Orpik walk
If Orpik leaves, Marc-Andre Fleury will become the longest tenured Penguin. It sure sounds like the Penguins are not going to re-sign Orpik, but with injuries already projected to keep Olli Maatta and Derrick Pouliot out of the lineup until Decemeber you never know.
Draft a Russian
@jmarshfof informed us of who he thinks the Penguins should take: Nikolay Goldobin
Nikolay Goldobin is one of the more electric players in this draft class. His ability to set-up his teammates, dangle through traffic, find loose pucks in front, and snipe is top notch. He’s an elite offensive talent with an electric, darting, and effortless skating stride. He’s a specialist with the puck on his stick and has quick hands that are difficult to read. This is a player that will bring you to the edge of your seat when he gets his top gear going heading into the offensive zone because he’s a magician and a dangle expert. He’s a very consistent offensive presence and produced a 22 game point streak in the meat of this season. Goldobin’s deficiency comes at the opposite end of the ice in his defensive zone. It appears that, at times, Goldobin completely shirks his responsibilities on the backend. Despite his electric approach to offense he’s also capable of getting lost in the shuffle and sneaking into good areas. His anticipation is top notch and he can create offense simply by opening up space in a lane or taking up an area of the ice. His wrist-shot is difficult to track and he’s capable of firing the puck off balance as effectively as he can with time and space. He stalks prime scoring chances on the ice from an offensive standpoint. Another key issue to his game lies in his physicality as he’s not very strong and does not go to war in key areas of the ice. The perception can be that he’s not interested in physical play or in the defensive aspect of the game. Both of these issues are coachable, the offensive skill set he brings is not. This is a player that would be well served spending time with a talented, playmaking center that could play equal parts set-up man and finisher with Goldobin.
Jesse actually said the Penguins should draft Nikita Scherbak
Nikita Scherbak is one of the most talented players in this draft class. His hands are smooth and lethal and his first step and agility are two of his best assets. Scherbak finished his first year playing on North American ice in an impressive fashion and won the WHL rookie of the year award for scoring and immediately adapting to the ice surface. Scherbak exhibited deficiencies in a few areas, including along the tougher areas of the ice and in his defensive zone, but responded well to coaching throughout the year. What can’t be coached is Scherbak’s offensive skill set. His shot is quick and deceptive, he puts a large amount of velocity into his wrister with little to no effort. Because of his release, Scherbak’s shot is also inherently difficult for goaltenders to track. His speed, light feet, and ability to make himself narrow are nightmares for defensemen to handle. His dangle-ability is top notch and his hands are extremely fast. His skill set can cause defensemen and goaltenders to get caught watching his every move. Scherbak does not stick to the perimeter and is willing to get in close and battle defenders despite being at a frame disadvantage in some cases. He can have a tendency to lean up ice a bit and over-anticipates developing plays. His vision and creativity levels are high-enough that his teammates have to avoid puck-watching and prepare for tape-to-tape passes at a moments notice, as Scherbak creates as much for others as he does himself. Scherbak also has a growing element of pest to his game. While this isn’t exhibited on a nightly basis, Scherbak will haunt defenders with his electric approach to offense, compounded with with an inhernet ability to be annoying and in your space at all times. Overall, this is an extremely talented forward with more room to grow, but the skill set to be a talented contributor to an NHL team with highly skilled centers that have a track record of scoring goals.
2013/14 WHL Statistics: 65GP -28G – 50A – 78PTS – 46PIM – -6
Don’t force a James Neal trade
Eklund struck late Thursday night. Maybe under a new coach Neal will stop being a dick? Unless it is something like Evander Kane for Neal, Pens should pass.
Take a look at these five free agent forwards
1. Ales Hemsky. Adam Gretz had a great write-up on him a few days ago.
Few players in the league possess his skating ability or slick hands with the puck, and all of that seems to get overlooked because his point totals have dropped. But when you look a little deeper, you might start to get an idea as to why his production has sharply fallen off, and a lot of it might be out of his control.
And with Mike Johnston, a coach that can reportedly coach skilled players, this could be a knock out.
2. Dan Boyle
Boyle would be a great mentor to the Penguins young offensive defenseman. Not sure what the going price is on him, but this would be an upgrade over Matt Niskanen.
3. Dave Bolland
This won’t happen for several reasons, Bolland wanting a really long contract is the main reason. But, if we didn’t know that, Bolland is a guy the Penguins could use. It would mean the end of Brandon Sutter probably, but we’d take that trade off anyday.
4. Steve Ott
Ott is a total dick. But he is the guy the Penguins should have traded for two seasons ago. If you could get him at a good price, why not?
5. Mike Cammalleri
This has always been a dream of ours. We’d imagine something like this happening if the Penguins trade James Neal. Cammalleri could probably also play with Crosby, which would be fun.
Don’t even think about it.
1. Ryan Malone.
If the Penguins do this, their new team slogan should just be ” He played here!”
2. Martin Brodeur
Don’t even think about this. Pens do need a backup goalie though FYI.
Love you, Ray, but the drafting style failed. If the Penguins do anything this weekend, hopefully it is learning from past mistakes.