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Malkin's Line Concerns Me Deeply. Panic!

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Old
02-12-2013, 10:17 AM
  #176
IHWR
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Conversely, "You idiots" would make a great hf username.

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02-12-2013, 10:17 AM
  #177
Chili Goal
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While it is not a good use of time to ponder trading Malkin, I would submit that for the long-term commitment the front office will undoubtedly make to him this offseason, the expectations placed on him SHOULD be extremely high. Coming into this shortened season, everyone was writing that Malkin would be 'game-ready' from playing overseas, and that this would offset the rust we would see from Crosby. That assessment appear to have been lost in the stat lines that were brought up earlier in this thread as proof comparison that his game is on par with Crosby's. Far from being game-ready, Malkin's play has taken a decided step backwards from last season. Whether that is singling him out or not really doesn't matter - he needs to be better, period. two obvious, correctable areas in my mind:

1.) Malkin is not 21 anymore, yet continues to take himself out of play at least once a game with undisciplined, selfish penalties. It is so easily addressed, if he improves upon even one facet of his game, it should be that. Then maybe Neal will stop doing it as well...

2.) this season Malkin has become much more of a perimeter player. worse, he has developed an annoying tendency to skate the puck from deep in the attacking zone BACK to the blue line. I'm not sure what type of strategy this is, but I haven't really seen quite so much of it from him prior to his KHL stint. case in point was sunday night, when his ridiculous loop-de-loo free-lancing in the zone was a primary factor in our giving up that first goal - and eerily reminiscent of his fellow countryman (see 4:40 mark of this if you want to do a double-take):



Geno at his best is driving to the net. this season, for whatever reason, he is skating near the boards (and not drawing as much coverage), and then forcing the puck cross-ice to Neal, resulting in way too many turnovers. the sooner he gets back to bearing down on the goaltender, the better off we'll be.

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02-12-2013, 10:25 AM
  #178
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Originally Posted by IHWR View Post
Shaddup already.

This board becomes unreadable if we lose two games in a row.

Every team has holes in their lineup...and if they don't right now, the salary cap will rip them open in a year or two anyways. Quit acting like having 2 generational talents on one team for the second time in the franchise's history and 1-3 Stanley Cups in your lifetime isn't enough for you (based on the quality of your posts I assume most of you are 14 years old or younger).

I get why a lot of other fans hate us.

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02-12-2013, 10:27 AM
  #179
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Originally Posted by Shady Machine View Post
I am deeply concerned about Malkin's thyme.
Me too. I don't think he's been watering it enough.


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02-12-2013, 11:39 AM
  #180
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Originally Posted by Chili Goal 7 View Post
While it is not a good use of time to ponder trading Malkin, I would submit that for the long-term commitment the front office will undoubtedly make to him this offseason, the expectations placed on him SHOULD be extremely high. Coming into this shortened season, everyone was writing that Malkin would be 'game-ready' from playing overseas, and that this would offset the rust we would see from Crosby. That assessment appear to have been lost in the stat lines that were brought up earlier in this thread as proof comparison that his game is on par with Crosby's. Far from being game-ready, Malkin's play has taken a decided step backwards from last season. Whether that is singling him out or not really doesn't matter - he needs to be better, period. two obvious, correctable areas in my mind:

1.) Malkin is not 21 anymore, yet continues to take himself out of play at least once a game with undisciplined, selfish penalties. It is so easily addressed, if he improves upon even one facet of his game, it should be that. Then maybe Neal will stop doing it as well...

2.) this season Malkin has become much more of a perimeter player. worse, he has developed an annoying tendency to skate the puck from deep in the attacking zone BACK to the blue line. I'm not sure what type of strategy this is, but I haven't really seen quite so much of it from him prior to his KHL stint. case in point was sunday night, when his ridiculous loop-de-loo free-lancing in the zone was a primary factor in our giving up that first goal - and eerily reminiscent of his fellow countryman (see 4:40 mark of this if you want to do a double-take):



Geno at his best is driving to the net. this season, for whatever reason, he is skating near the boards (and not drawing as much coverage), and then forcing the puck cross-ice to Neal, resulting in way too many turnovers. the sooner he gets back to bearing down on the goaltender, the better off we'll be.
Perhaps he's near the boards more because he's the only one on his line who can win a puck battle. Perhaps he's forcing the puck to Neal because he's got nowhere else to go with it and no puck support from the other winger.

The sooner he gets back to bearing down on the goaltender is right. Unfortunately, it's not a luxury he's had this season.

Personally, I think Malkin would find greener NHL pastures outside of Pittsburgh, and it goes well beyond the money. I just hope that he never realizes it, because I suspect his buddies Kovalchuk and Datsyuk will spend the summer telling him about the wonders of playing for guys like Peter DeBoer and Mike Babcock, coaches who will trust him, in systems designed to accentuate his strengths, and where his quality of linemates will take precedence over the construction of the third or even fourth lines. Plus, if Malkin left, then the Pens could be a euro free zone at last, without anyone who might not fit the whole 'get to our game' approach.


Last edited by KIRK: 02-12-2013 at 11:59 AM.
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Old
02-12-2013, 11:48 AM
  #181
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Conversely, "You idiots" would make a great hf username.
I had something similar as my title. They took away my ability to change it now.

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02-12-2013, 12:13 PM
  #182
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Originally Posted by KIRK View Post
Perhaps he's near the boards more because he's the only one on his line who can win a puck battle. Perhaps he's forcing the puck to Neal because he's got nowhere else to go with it and no puck support from the other winger.

The sooner he gets back to bearing down on the goaltender is right. Unfortunately, it's not a luxury he's had this season.

Personally, I think Malkin would find greener NHL pastures outside of Pittsburgh, and it goes well beyond the money. I just hope that he never realizes it, because I suspect his buddies Kovalchuk and Datsyuk will spend the summer telling him about the wonders of playing for guys like Peter DeBoer and Mike Babcock, coaches who will trust him, in systems designed to accentuate his strengths, and where his quality of linemates will take precedence over the construction of the third or even fourth lines. Plus, if Malkin left, then the Pens could be a euro free zone at last, without anyone who might not fit the whole 'get to our game' approach.
Babcock and DeBoer? Seriously?
While I tend to agree with most stuff you say about Malkin, neither of those would come any close to letting him play to his strengths. Both Kovalchuk and Datsyuk would definitely have better numbers playing in less defensively oriented systems, wouldn't you agree?

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02-12-2013, 12:13 PM
  #183
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Originally Posted by HandshakeLine View Post
Me too. I don't think he's been watering it enough.



I saw that and was like "did I really type that"?

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Old
02-12-2013, 12:45 PM
  #184
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Originally Posted by KIRK View Post
Personally, I think Malkin would find greener NHL pastures outside of Pittsburgh, and it goes well beyond the money. I just hope that he never realizes it, because I suspect his buddies Kovalchuk and Datsyuk will spend the summer telling him about the wonders of playing for guys like Peter DeBoer and Mike Babcock, coaches who will trust him, in systems designed to accentuate his strengths, and where his quality of linemates will take precedence over the construction of the third or even fourth lines. Plus, if Malkin left, then the Pens could be a euro free zone at last, without anyone who might not fit the whole 'get to our game' approach.
Kirk, you make it sound like Malkin's stuck playing with Talbot and Fedotenko again. Malkin's got the best winger on the team on his line. Yes, the other wing is a question mark, but you know what? I'd give anything to see Crosby have a guy like Neal on his line, even if it meant taking Boychuk/Tangradi/Jeffrey as part of the package.

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02-12-2013, 12:46 PM
  #185
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Originally Posted by Sidney the Kidney View Post
Kirk, you make it sound like Malkin's stuck playing with Talbot and Fedotenko again. Malkin's got the best winger on the team on his line. Yes, the other wing is a question mark, but you know what? I'd give anything to see Crosby have a guy like Neal on his line, even if it meant taking Boychuk/Tangradi/Jeffrey as part of the package.
Give me all your possessions and I will see to it that Neal and Boychuk flank Crosby tomorrow night.

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02-12-2013, 12:52 PM
  #186
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Originally Posted by laufer72 View Post
Babcock and DeBoer? Seriously?
While I tend to agree with most stuff you say about Malkin, neither of those would come any close to letting him play to his strengths. Both Kovalchuk and Datsyuk would definitely have better numbers playing in less defensively oriented systems, wouldn't you agree?
Kovalchuk had 83 points last year. Datsyuk is great in his own way but not as great as everyone says he is, i.e. not even in the conversation of best player in the world. Their numbers are good and I don't necessarily think a lot of teams play a "defensive" or "offensive" strategy at the moment.

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02-12-2013, 12:55 PM
  #187
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Kirk, you make it sound like Malkin's stuck playing with Talbot and Fedotenko again. Malkin's got the best winger on the team on his line. Yes, the other wing is a question mark, but you know what? I'd give anything to see Crosby have a guy like Neal on his line, even if it meant taking Boychuk/Tangradi/Jeffrey as part of the package.
I'm not sure how, but this board has somehow managed to understate the fact that Malkin's right wing has not managed a single point all season. Then for an encore the blame gets turned around on Malkin lol. I put "lol" there because I thought about it for a second and really did start laughing.

There are a lot of things I'll never understand, but the latest one is how so many people are more comfortable saying "Why oh why can't Malkin turn Boychuk into a scorer?" than "Boychuk is not a very good hockey player"

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02-12-2013, 12:59 PM
  #188
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I'm not sure how, but this board has somehow managed to understate the fact that Malkin's right wing has not managed a single point all season. Then for an encore the blame gets turned around on Malkin lol. I put "lol" there because I thought about it for a second and really did start laughing.
Technically speaking, it's Malkin's LW that hasn't got a single point this season. Neal generally plays his off-wing.

In general, all I'm saying is it seems Kirk's more concerned with making sure Geno's got two all-star caliber wingers because he's convinced Geno will get mad and go home after this season, than the holes in the rest of the roster. He had the same complaint last season when Sullivan was "dragging down" Malkin's line.

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02-12-2013, 01:01 PM
  #189
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Originally Posted by UnderratedBrooks44 View Post
I'm not sure how, but this board has somehow managed to understate the fact that Malkin's right wing has not managed a single point all season. Then for an encore the blame gets turned around on Malkin lol. I put "lol" there because I thought about it for a second and really did start laughing.

There are a lot of things I'll never understand, but the latest one is how so many people are more comfortable saying "Why oh why can't Malkin turn Boychuk into a scorer?" than "Boychuk is not a very good hockey player"
For the record, Malkin's right wing is James Neal.

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02-12-2013, 01:26 PM
  #190
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Originally Posted by Sidney the Kidney View Post
Technically speaking, it's Malkin's LW that hasn't got a single point this season. Neal generally plays his off-wing.

In general, all I'm saying is it seems Kirk's more concerned with making sure Geno's got two all-star caliber wingers because he's convinced Geno will get mad and go home after this season, than the holes in the rest of the roster. He had the same complaint last season when Sullivan was "dragging down" Malkin's line.
Well, we all know KIRK goes a little over the top sometimes with his defending (for lack of a better word) of Malkin (even when a defense isn't necessary or warranted). That said, trying to play hockey with one winger (who is primarily a shooter, even if a great one) and another guy that is either a 13 forward or waiver fodder isn't exactly easy.

That said, I do think Boychuk or Jeffrey could work out in that role. They just need more time to develop chemistry.

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02-12-2013, 01:36 PM
  #191
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Originally Posted by UnderratedBrooks44 View Post
I'm not sure how, but this board has somehow managed to understate the fact that Malkin's right wing has not managed a single point all season. Then for an encore the blame gets turned around on Malkin lol. I put "lol" there because I thought about it for a second and really did start laughing.

There are a lot of things I'll never understand, but the latest one is how so many people are more comfortable saying "Why oh why can't Malkin turn Boychuk into a scorer?" than "Boychuk is not a very good hockey player"
How many even-strength points does the rest of the line have to the relevant time frame?

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02-12-2013, 04:47 PM
  #192
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How many even-strength points does the rest of the line have to the relevant time frame?
The line has produced 3 ES goals in the 6 games Boychuk has been on it. Each came in isolated shifts where they were between linechanges or for some other reason Boychuk was on the bench.

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02-12-2013, 05:16 PM
  #193
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KIRK exaggerating. Now I've seen everything

seriously though, the first point about why Geno is playing near the boards more is completely valid. He simply has to because Boygradeddy don't get the job done there. I really don't get why we haven't at least tried Cooke there. He is the closest thing we have to Kunitz other than Kunitz.

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02-12-2013, 05:23 PM
  #194
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This thread better take a turn for the better soon or it's going to die alive.

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02-12-2013, 05:36 PM
  #195
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This thread better take a turn for the better soon or it's going to die alive.
Kunitz - Sid - Dupuis
Vitale - Malkin - Neal
Cooke - Sutter - Kennedy/Boychuk
Glass - Jeffrey - Adams

Go Pens.

completely serious btw. Very little doubt in my mind that line would be more effective with Vitale or Cooke than with Boychuk, TK or Tangradi. Those two might bring less things to the table, but they bring the right things.

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02-12-2013, 05:49 PM
  #196
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Kunitz should be on Malkin's line. Malkin needs a puck retrieval guy, a guy who will go into the boards and punish defenders.

It's too bad Tangradi isn't working out, because his size is exactly what Malkin needs on his wing. Kunitz is getting a little broken, and if Tangradi could have brought what we lost with Ryan Malone, it would've been great.

But Malkin is also ridiculous undisciplined. I can't think of a more undisciplined player in the entire league who isn't playing 8 minutes a game on a fourth line. The way he completely loses his head and either starts pouting or taking stupid penalties is absolutely unacceptable for someone getting paid like a superstar.

Crosby gets the toughest defensive matches, and yet him, Kunitz and Dupuis are +7, +7 and +6. Malkin's at -2, Neal is at -6. That's unacceptable even strength play.

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02-12-2013, 05:52 PM
  #197
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But Malkin is also ridiculous undisciplined. I can't think of a more undisciplined player in the entire league who isn't playing 8 minutes a game on a fourth line. The way he completely loses his head and either starts pouting or taking stupid penalties is absolutely unacceptable for someone getting paid like a superstar.
This is my one minor beef with Geno. He really needs to cut down on the undisciplined penalties. More often than not, if someone steals the puck off of him, there's a very good chance Geno will immediately hook/trip them as they're skating the other way and receive a penalty for it. He does that more than any skilled player I've seen.

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02-12-2013, 06:19 PM
  #198
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Kunitz - Sid - Dupuis
Vitale - Malkin - Neal
Cooke - Sutter - Kennedy/Boychuk
Glass - Jeffrey - Adams

Go Pens.

completely serious btw. Very little doubt in my mind that line would be more effective with Vitale or Cooke than with Boychuk, TK or Tangradi. Those two might bring less things to the table, but they bring the right things.
Agree 100%. Matt Cooke is underrated in this capacity IMO. He's a pretty smart guy / has a nose for being around the net at the right times, etc when he plays on a line focused on offense. Joe would do pretty much everything Kunitz does but would dish out 40A instead of 20G, 20A. But seriously, he'd do a pretty good job IMO.


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This is my one minor beef with Geno. He really needs to cut down on the undisciplined penalties.
I can live with this kind of criticism as it's valid and a recurring theme at times. It's one of the weaker edges of his game, maybe the only weak edge technically speaking.

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02-12-2013, 06:27 PM
  #199
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Originally Posted by Ogrezilla View Post
Kunitz - Sid - Dupuis
Vitale - Malkin - Neal
Cooke - Sutter - Kennedy/Boychuk
Glass - Jeffrey - Adams

Go Pens.

completely serious btw. Very little doubt in my mind that line would be more effective with Vitale or Cooke than with Boychuk, TK or Tangradi. Those two might bring less things to the table, but they bring the right things.
Make it happen Dan.

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02-12-2013, 06:52 PM
  #200
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Boychuk passes the puck off way too much, he has opportunities to shoot and then passes it to Neal or Malkin, forced passes too where any other player in that same situation would shoot the puck. I still want to give Boychuk a shot, but seriously, he has barely 1 shot a game.

I'm all for swapping Boychuk with Cooke for a few games, just so the Geno line has a guy that drives to the net, will shoot, and is good at cycling the puck.

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