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Old
01-09-2013, 08:24 AM
  #226
mrzeigler
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Originally Posted by Ogrezilla View Post
I won't get my hopes up, but we'll see. I definitely like Jeffrey. I don't see that being the long term solution, but it could prove to be the best setup for what we currently have. Can't say I've seen enough of Sutter to know if he'd be a good top 6 fit beyond being a stopgap.

Kunitz - Crosby - Dupuis
Sutter - Malkin - Neal
Cooke - Jeffrey - Kennedy
Glass - Vitale - Tangradi/Adams

I don't see it happening but its not impossible I guess.




I don't see it happening, either. You don't trade a premier shut-down center who wants a larger offensive role for a pretty damn good defensive center only to put that guy on the wing of Sidney Crosby or Evgeni Malkin.

Sutter is at his most valuable to this team in the role of shutdown 3C, top-4 PKer and guy who will chip in 15-23 goals over the course of a regular season. A smart organization won't cast aside his tremendous defensive value by trying to squeeze an extra half dozen goals out of him by making him a regular top-6 winger.

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Old
01-09-2013, 08:26 AM
  #227
Ogrezilla
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Originally Posted by Jag68Sid87 View Post
I want to add the following: while I have zero faith in Bylsma to choose the right (as in correct, not left or right) winger to complete the top six, a lot of the blame here has to fall on Shero. He's kinda placed his coach in a position where the only options are Cooke, Kennedy, Jeffrey, Tangradi and Bennett...and none of them are ideal. Personally, I think we would be wise in giving Tangradi a legit shot, but it's also clear to me that the coach doesn't like him.

If Zach Parise was plans A, B, C and D, well then plan E isn't great.

It shouldn't be TOO hard to decide which young defenseman to move, and ship him out for a capable top-six winger. The problem is, perhaps we need to shore up the D even more than we may need a winger.

Which begs the question: how come we're favored to win the Cup with so many question marks?
Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby are really freaking good at hockey.

Kunitz - Crosby - Dupuis
Cooke - Malkin - Neal

is easily the best top 6 in the league. Not even a question.

The question about needing a d-man more than a forward depends on your philosophy. Do you want as few holes in your team as possible, or do you want to exploit your biggest advantage as much as possible?

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01-09-2013, 08:37 AM
  #228
Jag68Sid87
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Originally Posted by Ogrezilla View Post
Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby are really freaking good at hockey.

Kunitz - Crosby - Dupuis
Cooke - Malkin - Neal

is easily the best top 6 in the league. Not even a question.

The question about needing a d-man more than a forward depends on your philosophy. Do you want as few holes in your team as possible, or do you want to exploit your biggest advantage as much as possible?
Well, to answer your last question, I've always felt it was crazy NOT to exploit your biggest advantage as much as possible, so I've never understood the neglect on the wings thing. In fact, it's crazy to have Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin on your roster and NOT build around THEM!

Regarding the top six, I think I'd rather have:

Brown-Kopitar-Williams
Gagne/Penner-Richards-Carter

Especially when you can then put out two hard lines to play against, a Norris trophy candidate on D, true shutdown blueliners, depth everywhere and a Vezina trophy winning goaltender.

The Kings are what we used to be, and the standard right now. In fact, if Tyler Toffoli were a Pens prospect, he'd be the top candidate to complete our top 6. But he can't crack LA.

Yes, having Crosby and Malkin is an edge for us and always will be, and always gives us a chance. But we've seen in the last few years that they cannot cover up for all the weaknesses, either. Not at the highest level. Not when your coach is a maroon. Not when your goalie is a spazz. Not when you're so predictable on offense. Not when you're so awful defensively.

Having three complementary wingers in your top six and only one sniper just isn't enough anymore. Not when all the other pieces from the '09 Cup team are missing. And now secondary scoring will be added to the list of things we don't have anymore, unless Brandon Sutter plays better than expected and morphs into Jordan Staal. I like him, and he just might, but we lost SOMETHING in that deal, without question.

So, I don't think all the expectations surrounding this team will be a good thing, because there are just too many holes.

If it leads to a firing or major trade, so be it.

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01-09-2013, 08:43 AM
  #229
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I completely agree we need to build around Sid and Geno. Right now, both wing and defense are a hole that needs fixing. So we aren't really doing either of the things I said. I'm just saying where the expectations come from.

That said, I don't think a lack of snipers is the biggest issue with the top 6 even. Our top 6 as is will score more than the King's top 6. No doubt in my mind. But theirs might carry play more because the complimentary guys on their wings are better than Cooke and Dupuis. Their lines are complete. Ours are not. I think we need one more scorer and one more tough to play against guy to really complete the top 6. And I hope that's the direction we go if we have to make a choice between adding forwards or defense.

But just back to us vs the Kings top 6, I take ours. Sid and Geno are just that much better than Kopitar and Richards imo.

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01-09-2013, 08:49 AM
  #230
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Originally Posted by Ogrezilla View Post
I completely agree we need to build around Sid and Geno. Right now, both wing and defense are a hole that needs fixing. So we aren't really doing either of the things I said. I'm just saying where the expectations come from.

That said, I don't think a lack of snipers is the biggest issue with the top 6 even. Our top 6 as is will score more than the King's top 6. No doubt in my mind. But theirs might carry play more because the complimentary guys on their wings are better than Cooke and Dupuis. Their lines are complete. Ours are not. I think we need one more scorer and one more tough to play against guy to really complete the top 6. And I hope that's the direction we go if we have to make a choice between adding forwards or defense.

But just back to us vs the Kings top 6, I take ours. Sid and Geno are just that much better than Kopitar and Richards imo.
The thing is, by having non top-six wingers in our top six, the massive advantage we would have had with Sid and Geno is lessened...and everybody inches closer to us and we revert back towards the pack just a little. It's frustrating.

We desperately need some of our youth to pan out in a big way, both on D and on the wings.

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01-09-2013, 08:57 AM
  #231
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Originally Posted by Jag68Sid87 View Post
The thing is, by having non top-six wingers in our top six, the massive advantage we would have had with Sid and Geno is lessened...and everybody inches closer to us and we revert back towards the pack just a little. It's frustrating.

We desperately need some of our youth to pan out in a big way, both on D and on the wings.
That youth needs to play, but DB loves his vets. So it's a catch 22.

I just have faith DB learned a hard lesson about how youth can be served in the Flyer series. Boston and LA both also won the Cup with three rookies in the lineup.

If DB can't change and see it by now, he never will. I think he is a smart guy who unfortunately has a stubborn streak that makes him set in his ways.

If he can lose the stubbornness, he could be a hell of a coach.

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Old
01-09-2013, 09:52 AM
  #232
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Originally Posted by Jag68Sid87 View Post
Well, to answer your last question, I've always felt it was crazy NOT to exploit your biggest advantage as much as possible, so I've never understood the neglect on the wings thing. In fact, it's crazy to have Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin on your roster and NOT build around THEM!

Regarding the top six, I think I'd rather have:

Brown-Kopitar-Williams
Gagne/Penner-Richards-Carter


Especially when you can then put out two hard lines to play against, a Norris trophy candidate on D, true shutdown blueliners, depth everywhere and a Vezina trophy winning goaltender.

The Kings are what we used to be, and the standard right now. In fact, if Tyler Toffoli were a Pens prospect, he'd be the top candidate to complete our top 6. But he can't crack LA.

Yes, having Crosby and Malkin is an edge for us and always will be, and always gives us a chance. But we've seen in the last few years that they cannot cover up for all the weaknesses, either. Not at the highest level. Not when your coach is a maroon. Not when your goalie is a spazz. Not when you're so predictable on offense. Not when you're so awful defensively.

Having three complementary wingers in your top six and only one sniper just isn't enough anymore. Not when all the other pieces from the '09 Cup team are missing. And now secondary scoring will be added to the list of things we don't have anymore, unless Brandon Sutter plays better than expected and morphs into Jordan Staal. I like him, and he just might, but we lost SOMETHING in that deal, without question.

So, I don't think all the expectations surrounding this team will be a good thing, because there are just too many holes.

If it leads to a firing or major trade, so be it.

Kings get hot for 2 months, sneak into the playoffs and now are the bench mark for the entire league

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01-09-2013, 09:58 AM
  #233
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Originally Posted by Jag68Sid87 View Post
I want to add the following: while I have zero faith in Bylsma to choose the right (as in correct, not left or right) winger to complete the top six, a lot of the blame here has to fall on Shero. He's kinda placed his coach in a position where the only options are Cooke, Kennedy, Jeffrey, Tangradi and Bennett...and none of them are ideal. Personally, I think we would be wise in giving Tangradi a legit shot, but it's also clear to me that the coach doesn't like him.

If Zach Parise was plans A, B, C and D, well then plan E isn't great.

It shouldn't be TOO hard to decide which young defenseman to move, and ship him out for a capable top-six winger. The problem is, perhaps we need to shore up the D even more than we may need a winger.

Which begs the question: how come we're favored to win the Cup with so many question marks?
I have said a couple of times that one thing the Pens really need is the old Ray Shero, not the guy the last three years who is so married to picks and prospects that he forgets the player, if he even pans out, isn't necessarily likely to have a significant impact and is highly unlikely to have a significant impact before Geno turns 30. The emphasis he placed on winning when Sid and Geno were in their rookie deals vis-a-vis the assets he'd move to go for it was NOT the same after the Pens won the cup.

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01-09-2013, 10:03 AM
  #234
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Originally Posted by Ogrezilla View Post
Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby are really freaking good at hockey.

Kunitz - Crosby - Dupuis
Cooke - Malkin - Neal

is easily the best top 6 in the league. Not even a question.

The question about needing a d-man more than a forward depends on your philosophy. Do you want as few holes in your team as possible, or do you want to exploit your biggest advantage as much as possible?
So, if Crosby and Malkin are really freaking good at hockey, if THEY are the Pens advantage, then why not exploit it by giving both of them a pair of legit top six guys each? Why say 'I've got the best center in hockey on two lines' and then ask each of them to skate with an arm tied behind their backs. Kind of mitigates the advantage, no?

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01-09-2013, 10:05 AM
  #235
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Originally Posted by Anderson55 View Post
Kings get hot for 2 months, sneak into the playoffs and now are the bench mark for the entire league
Pens get lucky, win a cup without having to face a tough defensive team in their run, and suddenly Sid's and Geno's wingers don't matter.

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01-09-2013, 10:21 AM
  #236
Ogrezilla
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Originally Posted by KIRK View Post
So, if Crosby and Malkin are really freaking good at hockey, if THEY are the Pens advantage, then why not exploit it by giving both of them a pair of legit top six guys each? Why say 'I've got the best center in hockey on two lines' and then ask each of them to skate with an arm tied behind their backs. Kind of mitigates the advantage, no?
I am on your side here. But I do see the other side as being logical enough to be defended.

Side 1. Sid and Geno are the best players in the world. Surround them with talent and overwhelm people with that advantage. Weaknesses elsewhere will happen.

Side 2. Sid and Geno ar the best players in the world. Build a team with as few weaknesses as possible and lean on them to make the offense work. They are the best players in the world, right?

as I said above, the team currently doesn't really fall into either of these categories.

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Old
01-09-2013, 10:38 AM
  #237
alcanalz
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Pens get lucky, win a cup without having to face a tough defensive team in their run, and suddenly Sid's and Geno's wingers don't matter.
... the Red Wings? Even the year before, the Rangers were top of the line defensively when we made our first run.

Oh lord.

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01-09-2013, 10:39 AM
  #238
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Kings get hot for 2 months, sneak into the playoffs and now are the bench mark for the entire league
They were much better than their record indicated. Plus, they dominated in the playoffs. So yeah, I think right now they are the benchmark.

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01-09-2013, 10:50 AM
  #239
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Kings have offense power but didn't win a ton of games last year by scoring lots. They had excellent goal tending and were extremely stingy defensively. They gave up very little chances and I think that was their advantage. All 5 players did a great job at making it difficult to get scoring opportunities

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01-09-2013, 11:22 AM
  #240
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... the Red Wings? Even the year before, the Rangers were top of the line defensively when we made our first run.

Oh lord.
Yes, you've proven how not so with it you are:

In 2009, the Pens won the cup with garbage on Geno's wings. They played Philly and Washington, neither of whom were close to good defensive teams. Carolina had nobody to matchup against Geno. Detroit had the same problem with Datsyuk hurt. If Datsyuk is healthy OR the Pens meet a good defensive team like Boston or Philly in 2009, it's a different ball game.

In 2008, the Pens marched through the East, including against a good Rangers defensive team and could've beaten Detroit in the finals if Geno had been healthy and the team hadn't had collective first time cup jitters.

NOW, here's the question: What were the Pens two lines in 2008, when they marched through the East without any problem?

Dupuis-Sid-Hossa (Hossa + Dupuis equals two legit top six wingers in effect because Hossa was elite).

Malone-Malkin-Sykora (Malkin with two legit top six wingers).

So, really, in your attempt at mockery, you proved my point, that this team would be best constructed where both Sid and Geno had two good wingers each so that they could exploit the advantage that Sid and Geno represent.

Now, think about all that while I sign off by noting in reply to you OH LORD

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ogrezilla View Post
I am on your side here. But I do see the other side as being logical enough to be defended.

Side 1. Sid and Geno are the best players in the world. Surround them with talent and overwhelm people with that advantage. Weaknesses elsewhere will happen.

Side 2. Sid and Geno ar the best players in the world. Build a team with as few weaknesses as possible and lean on them to make the offense work. They are the best players in the world, right?

as I said above, the team currently doesn't really fall into either of these categories.
The 2008 run was mainly Side 1 at play and would've worked if they don't get unlucky . . . if Geno doesn't get hurt or the cup finals rookie jitters aren't so pronounced.

The 2009 run was a little more Side 2 at play, even after the Kunitz and Guerin deals. It worked because they got lucky, not facing a top end defensive team in the East and getting a hobbled Datsyuk in the finals .

Ergo, luck always is part of it, but Shero has tried the side 2 approach the last three years. Leaving 2011 out of it, he really hasn't made an effort to put Sid and Geno combined in a position to overwhelm teams since 2008.


Last edited by KIRK: 01-09-2013 at 11:27 AM.
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01-09-2013, 11:22 AM
  #241
UnrealMachine
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Regarding the top six, I think I'd rather have:

Brown-Kopitar-Williams
Gagne/Penner-Richards-Carter
2011-2012: Crosby/Malkin/Neal/Dupuis/Kunitz = Scoring rate of 460 points over 82 games.
2012-2012: Brown/Kopitar/Williams/Penner/Richards/Carter = Scoring rate of 310 points over 82 games.

Assume the other top 6 forward that we dress can get at least 40 points over the course of the season and you are looking at the potential of over 500 points from our top 6 next season over 82 games.

For reference, the Kings' most productive forward would have been our 4th most productive forward last season.

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01-09-2013, 11:54 AM
  #242
Ogrezilla
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2011-2012: Crosby/Malkin/Neal/Dupuis/Kunitz = Scoring rate of 460 points over 82 games.
2012-2012: Brown/Kopitar/Williams/Penner/Richards/Carter = Scoring rate of 310 points over 82 games.

Assume the other top 6 forward that we dress can get at least 40 points over the course of the season and you are looking at the potential of over 500 points from our top 6 next season over 82 games.

For reference, the Kings' most productive forward would have been our 4th most productive forward last season.
exactly. I agree with Jags that the top 6 wings should be better. But pure production is not the biggest need there. At least not in the form of a sniper. I wouldn't be against it, but give me two more Kunitz's and I'm thrilled. One more Kunitz and one more Neal is the ideal though. We don't have the defense or the goaltending that LA has. We need more production than they do or we need to improve our defense. I think improving the forwards -- building around Sid and Geno -- is the best way to improve this team as a whole. My dream is to have the top 6 wings to allow us to have a Cooke - Sutter - Dupuis 3rd line.

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01-09-2013, 01:07 PM
  #243
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MacIntyre will get some games with the East bulking up (Scott in Buffalo, Carkner/Boulton on Island, Parros in Florida)

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01-09-2013, 01:16 PM
  #244
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MacIntyre will get some games with the East bulking up (Scott in Buffalo, Carkner/Boulton on Island, Parros in Florida)
God I hope so, but as long as Bylsma is coaching we will be a four-line team.

It's illogical to me to be a four-line team when you have 2 superstars that are under-utilized, and we don't protect them very well, but it is what it is.

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01-09-2013, 03:06 PM
  #245
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I don't know whether or not stacking the top 6 is the best thing for this team, but I'm just not getting this notion that defensive teams are our achilles heel. Out of curiosity I looked at our record last year against the top 5 defensive teams in the league (LAK, PHO, NYR, VAN, STL) and we went a combined 8-2-1 against them while struggling against offensive teams like Ottawa and Philly.

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01-09-2013, 03:08 PM
  #246
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I don't know whether or not stacking the top 6 is the best thing for this team, but I'm just not getting this notion that defensive teams are our achilles heel. Out of curiosity I looked at our record last year against the top 5 defensive teams in the league (LAK, PHO, NYR, VAN, STL) and we went a combined 8-2-1 against them while struggling against offensive teams like Ottawa and Philly.
Fair point. Then again, how did we fare against Montreal before in the playoffs. That's the big concern, not our record in the regular season against any given team, but how we match up over a seven game series.

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01-09-2013, 03:23 PM
  #247
Ogrezilla
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Fair point. Then again, how did we fare against Montreal before in the playoffs. That's the big concern, not our record in the regular season against any given team, but how we match up over a seven game series.
That has only happened once though. I don't know if you can use one series three years ago to define our weakness

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01-09-2013, 03:26 PM
  #248
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That has only happened once though. I don't know if you can use one series three years ago to define our weakness
Yeah, using that from 3 years ago against a red-hot goalie that did the same to the Caps after 2 full Stanley Cup runs is not as representative as more recent data like last year when we led the league in goals and scored plenty in the Philly series too

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01-09-2013, 03:36 PM
  #249
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Fair point. Then again, how did we fare against Montreal before in the playoffs. That's the big concern, not our record in the regular season against any given team, but how we match up over a seven game series.
Not well. But how much of that was because of our offense and how much of it was because of our own terrible defense and Fleury's .891 save percentage + allowing goals from the goal line? Why didn't we match up well against Philly last year when they have no defense and Bryzgalov the Clown in net?

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01-09-2013, 03:39 PM
  #250
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We need another scoring threat. A proper defensive team like the Rags would give us trouble in the postseason without one IMO.

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