2018 Summer Game Plan

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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby Malkintent on Fri May 25, 2018 6:16 am

You can't just say two guys can/will replace what Kessel brings. You'd have to take someone else out of the lineup so which two players are going to replace what Phil and ______ bring.

I'm hesitant to give Kessel away just yet. The Pens had Crosby and Malkin for years and did nothing from 2010 to 2015. Pens get Phil and win two straight. This forward core is so good they dominated in 2016 and losing our #1 dman (like him or not) only made it more fair for the rest of the league. Maybe if Malkin and Kessel weren't hurt they'd still be in it. Point is I think trading Kessel now would be a mistake. Sprong hasn't proven anything yet.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby KG on Fri May 25, 2018 7:21 am

Malkintent wrote:You can't just say two guys can/will replace what Kessel brings. You'd have to take someone else out of the lineup so which two players are going to replace what Phil and ______ bring.

I'm hesitant to give Kessel away just yet. The Pens had Crosby and Malkin for years and did nothing from 2010 to 2015. Pens get Phil and win two straight. This forward core is so good they dominated in 2016 and losing our #1 dman (like him or not) only made it more fair for the rest of the league. Maybe if Malkin and Kessel weren't hurt they'd still be in it. Point is I think trading Kessel now would be a mistake. Sprong hasn't proven anything yet.


Good post. I agree. The depth dynamic scoring model has worked. If they move from Kessel they would just spend time and assets replacing him. He’s still a dynamic player. I wouldn’t move him yet unless they got a great offer.

It’s also not realistic to pencil Sprong in for X amount of goals. Sully chose to play offensive stalwarts Kuhnackl and Simon over him. So who knows!
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby penny lane on Fri May 25, 2018 8:05 am

This relationship will take coaching from Mike Sullivan. If he was able to take Fleury out of the line up, he should be able to do the same with Phil. Injury no injury- why could Phil not shoot the puck with velocity?
Tres' pressure for Brassard next year... and to add more, if he could click with Phil it would be huge.
Phil will be Phil, but if he is scoring and contributing- best opportunity for the pens to continue winning.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby KG on Fri May 25, 2018 8:32 am

If the Pens want to continue the balanced scoring attack, and they certainly do. They start out with this:

Sid/Jake
Geno/Horny
Brass/Phill

That’s the making of 3 great lines. I wouldn’t mess with that. I would add to it.

I’m with FLP I would sign Grabner and put him and his speed in the top 6 and bump down Haggy to the bottom lines. Play Sprong and ZAR all season. Trade Sheary and Hunwick for a 5/6 D man. Sign a veteran solid backup.

I wouldn’t make any wholesale changes.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby KG on Fri May 25, 2018 9:27 am

Random thought....Washington and Vegas are in the cup and they were both largely quiet on the deadline. Vegas overpaid for Tartar and he's a healthy scratch. Washington stood pat. Yes Vegas added Reaves....but it does seem the teams that make the larger trades come deadline doesn't usually result in winning it all...
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby FLPensFan on Fri May 25, 2018 9:55 am

KG wrote:If the Pens want to continue the balanced scoring attack, and they certainly do. They start out with this:

Sid/Jake
Geno/Horny
Brass/Phill

That’s the making of 3 great lines. I wouldn’t mess with that. I would add to it.

I’m with FLP I would sign Grabner and put him and his speed in the top 6 and bump down Haggy to the bottom lines. Play Sprong and ZAR all season. Trade Sheary and Hunwick for a 5/6 D man. Sign a veteran solid backup.

I wouldn’t make any wholesale changes.

I have no problem with any of what you said above. Grabner or a gritty/skilled forward on LW is top priority in my book. A good 5/6 d-man to pair with Oleksiak is 2nd. Sadly, I don't think the Penguins will have the cap space for a veteran backup. I think it will be DeSmith or Jarry.

At the same time, what do you do if rumors are true that Kessel is demanding to play with Malkin? I wouldn't mind a Jake-Sid-Horny, Grabner-Geno-Phil, with ZAR-Brassard-Sprong as 3rd line, with Hags-Sheahan-Rust as the 4th line. You bump Hags/Rust up to 3rd line as needed based on the performance of ZAR and Sprong.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby no name on Fri May 25, 2018 10:05 am

I don't see the same Sullivan who came here and said. "I sure won't take one day for granted i'll tell you that". Seems like his head is getting to big, he will run himself out of town the same way he did out of Boston.

Earth to Sullivan, time to come back down.

This Kessel trade talk, not sure you are going to find another guy like him, who can do the things he can. If you would trade him, we are still a cup chasing team, no picks or prospects, players who can help right now.
Last edited by no name on Fri May 25, 2018 10:10 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby lemieuxReturns on Fri May 25, 2018 10:07 am

Here are the things that still bother me since the Penguins have been eliminated.
- Murray giving up that Niski shot from so far away
- Letang being Letang in game 5 with us up 3-2
- All the media hate towards Kessel
- Silence from Geno and the rumor yesterday that Geno was upset that he didnt play with Kessel.
- Sullivan looking more and more like a guy who needs to chill when it comes to players:

* Plots. Wasnt playing great so he sits him. Rumor was Plots was angry about sitting out too much and asked to be traded if he was not going to get played. Hard to blame the guy when he bought out his own KHL contract to come to the Penguins (reporting early).

* MAF. When Sullivan came here, he had an AHL team full of players that were his guys. Murray was one of them. When MAF went down in the season due to a concussion he gave the reigns to Murray. The following season, when Murray got hurt and MAF played great, it was Murray again once he was healed.

* Cole. He was sitting Cole when every fan could see Cole deserved to play. It was the first real showing of stuburnness from the coach that appeared to be hurting the team. JR ends up essentially giving him away.

* Reaves. JR brought this guy in to help. Sullivan obviously dissagreed with JR from the begining. Played Reaves less than 5 minutes a night.

* Kessel. Looks like Sullivan has issues with Kessel. The guy who had his best season in the NHL this year. Who averaged nearly a point a game in the playoffs, AGAIN. If Kessel is traded because of Sullivan and not because of the opportunity to grab a huge asset then we are in real trouble hear. It is one thing to trade guys like Reaves because the coach has problems but if we are trading away a 90+ point guy who is one of the main reasons we just won 2 cups because Sullivan has an ego..... ****, this is going to be a long Sullivan tenure from hell.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby Jim on Fri May 25, 2018 10:13 am

It is nice to see that people have finally taken off the rose-colored-Sullivan glasses and are beginning to see what I have been saying for a year and a half.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby Southern Fan on Fri May 25, 2018 10:25 am

Sullivan has a funny way of not "liking" Kessel. He was on the number one power play being the puck handler thru the neutral zone. He got his playing time. He was out there in game 6 with 30 seconds left before overtime in the offensive zone. I guess he trusted him, but didn't want to trust him.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby Malkintent on Fri May 25, 2018 10:31 am

Wasn't Plotnikov under Johnston's tenure?
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby largegarlic on Fri May 25, 2018 10:35 am

Southern Fan wrote:Sullivan has a funny way of not "liking" Kessel. He was on the number one power play being the puck handler thru the neutral zone. He got his playing time. He was out there in game 6 with 30 seconds left before overtime in the offensive zone. I guess he trusted him, but didn't want to trust him.


That's a good point. I know a lot of us on here were complaining that Kessel was still on the top PP unit in the back half of the Caps series when he clearly wasn't effective.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby Cow_Master66 on Fri May 25, 2018 11:01 am

Phil's best and most important asset is that he's a big game player that produces in the playoffs. If he had this year, like he has every year prior, nobody would be talking about this. Whether he scores 100, 90, or 60 regular season points matters not. The only thing expected out of Phil is production once the real season starts. This past post season was not the norm, so I think everyone (including Sully) needs to chill the F out... :pop:
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby lemieuxReturns on Fri May 25, 2018 11:11 am

Malkintent wrote:Wasn't Plotnikov under Johnston's tenure?


Plots played 32 total NHL games with the Penguins.

Sullivan was the head coach for 10 of those 32 games. After the game on January 6th against Chicago, he never played again until he was eventually traded to Arizona on February 29th.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby Jim on Fri May 25, 2018 11:20 am

largegarlic wrote:
Southern Fan wrote:Sullivan has a funny way of not "liking" Kessel. He was on the number one power play being the puck handler thru the neutral zone. He got his playing time. He was out there in game 6 with 30 seconds left before overtime in the offensive zone. I guess he trusted him, but didn't want to trust him.


That's a good point. I know a lot of us on here were complaining that Kessel was still on the top PP unit in the back half of the Caps series when he clearly wasn't effective.


Maybe everyone is basing this Kessel/Sullivan rift and trade talk on a single source that is a hack and click bait artist.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby dark_forces on Fri May 25, 2018 11:21 am

Anyone read the latest TIOPS article? Anything worthwhile about kessel?
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby thehockeyguru on Fri May 25, 2018 11:22 am

largegarlic wrote:
Southern Fan wrote:Sullivan has a funny way of not "liking" Kessel. He was on the number one power play being the puck handler thru the neutral zone. He got his playing time. He was out there in game 6 with 30 seconds left before overtime in the offensive zone. I guess he trusted him, but didn't want to trust him.


That's a good point. I know a lot of us on here were complaining that Kessel was still on the top PP unit in the back half of the Caps series when he clearly wasn't effective.


I also remember a week before Cole was traded there was a 5-3 we had to kill and he went with Cole, Hagelin and Sheahan to kill it. You don't put Cole out there in that situation if he isn't your best penalty killer. Furthermore you don't downplay the guys contributions when he was a key piece in winning two cups.

I don't get the sense at all that Sullivan views some of the moves he made as the incorrect ones and that worries me.
Last edited by thehockeyguru on Fri May 25, 2018 11:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby penny lane on Fri May 25, 2018 11:23 am

I've never heard Evgeni complain about linemates~why? He always gets new ones. :D Geno produces with whoever.

This exit from post season, to the caps is a humbling experience for all of us.
That could be a good thing!
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby Daniel on Fri May 25, 2018 12:05 pm

thehockeyguru wrote:
largegarlic wrote:
Southern Fan wrote:Sullivan has a funny way of not "liking" Kessel. He was on the number one power play being the puck handler thru the neutral zone. He got his playing time. He was out there in game 6 with 30 seconds left before overtime in the offensive zone. I guess he trusted him, but didn't want to trust him.


That's a good point. I know a lot of us on here were complaining that Kessel was still on the top PP unit in the back half of the Caps series when he clearly wasn't effective.


I also remember a week before Cole was traded there was a 5-3 we had to kill and he went with Cole, Hagelin and Sheahan to kill it. You don't put Cole out there in that situation if he isn't your best penalty killer. Furthermore you don't downplay the guys contributions when he was a key piece in winning two cups.

I don't get the sense at all that Sullivan views some of the moves he made as the incorrect ones and that worries me.


I think with Cole and Kessel, Sullivan has off ice problems and I think Tocchet being gone might not help. I think we didn't see these kinds of issues as much because Tocchet was able to be a buffer and Recchi isn't.

With Reaves, I wonder if the lack of an NHL 4th line C had a lot to do with Reaves ice time, since the 4th line as a whole didn't get much ice time.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby pens_CT on Fri May 25, 2018 12:51 pm

Jim wrote:It is nice to see that people have finally taken off the rose-colored-Sullivan glasses and are beginning to see what I have been saying for a year and a half.


All coaches have a shelf life, with that said when you consider some of the clowns this organization has employed as the coach over its history, I would put Sullivan just behind Bob Johnson and Bowman. If Rutherford fired Sullivan tomorrow he would have another job within a week. So the point is I don't see Sullivan as one of the top three reasons why this team didn't make it to the finals again. I think Rutherford and company need to evaluate next year's result and make a decision, and obviously if there is a disconnect between the GM and the coach on the make up of the team, then something needs to change. I'm not sure we are close to being at that point.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby Daniel on Fri May 25, 2018 12:59 pm

pens_CT wrote:
Jim wrote:It is nice to see that people have finally taken off the rose-colored-Sullivan glasses and are beginning to see what I have been saying for a year and a half.


All coaches have a shelf life, with that said when you consider some of the clowns this organization has employed as the coach over its history, I would put Sullivan just behind Bob Johnson and Bowman. If Rutherford fired Sullivan tomorrow he would have another job within a week. So the point is I don't see Sullivan as one of the top three reasons why this team didn't make it to the finals again. I think Rutherford and company need to evaluate next year's result and make a decision, and obviously if there is a disconnect between the GM and the coach on the make up of the team, then something needs to change. I'm not sure we are close to being at that point.


Frankly, I think that as a player can have a bad year so can a coach and Sullivan simply had a bad year. How he adapts for next year will be key. I think Rutherford waiting so long to get him center help didn't help matters either.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby FLPensFan on Fri May 25, 2018 1:13 pm

dark_forces wrote:Anyone read the latest TIOPS article? Anything worthwhile about kessel?

The Onion of Hockey (aka TIOPS) says the Penguins are looking for 1 of 2 scenarios for a Kessel trade:

1. A Neal for Hornqvist type swap, where the player coming back for Kessel is a more complete, 200 foot player. TIOPS says this is the primary objective, and the Pittsburgh is open to retaining a small percentage of Kessel's contract.

2. Opening up about 4M in cap space, and having a young NHL player coming back.

TIOPS says there is interest from Arizona, Nashville, and Chicago.
---states Poile likes Kessel. Talking about a Kessel for Craig Smith centered deal
---states Hawks have buyers remorse over Panarin for Saad, and that Saad would be the player coming back for Penguins. Then goes on to say the increased speed is limiting Saad's effectiveness, where others say he just had an off year and will rebound.
---Arizona is seen because of scenario 2.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby thehockeyguru on Fri May 25, 2018 1:15 pm

Jim wrote:It is nice to see that people have finally taken off the rose-colored-Sullivan glasses and are beginning to see what I have been saying for a year and a half.


For me it's just playing favorites. To say that Geno and Phil can't play together because they are a defensive liability while continuing to play Letang 25 minutes a night is nuts.

He sat Cole because of his "gaffs" but I can't think of one that was more blatant than 5 Letang mistakes that cost us goals.

There have been people on here who have said HCMS is the total Alpha in that locker room I don't see it. When things are going well it appears that way, but when things aren't going well he plays favorites. To me that isn't a true leader.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby Jim on Fri May 25, 2018 2:43 pm

FLPensFan wrote:
dark_forces wrote:Anyone read the latest TIOPS article? Anything worthwhile about kessel?

The Onion of Hockey (aka TIOPS) says the Penguins are looking for 1 of 2 scenarios for a Kessel trade:

1. A Neal for Hornqvist type swap, where the player coming back for Kessel is a more complete, 200 foot player. TIOPS says this is the primary objective, and the Pittsburgh is open to retaining a small percentage of Kessel's contract.

2. Opening up about 4M in cap space, and having a young NHL player coming back.

TIOPS says there is interest from Arizona, Nashville, and Chicago.
---states Poile likes Kessel. Talking about a Kessel for Craig Smith centered deal
---states Hawks have buyers remorse over Panarin for Saad, and that Saad would be the player coming back for Penguins. Then goes on to say the increased speed is limiting Saad's effectiveness, where others say he just had an off year and will rebound.
---Arizona is seen because of scenario 2.


Just say no to Saad, unless it would be Saad @50% plus pieces.
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Re: 2018 Summer Game Plan

Postby thehockeyguru on Fri May 25, 2018 3:11 pm

FLPensFan wrote:
dark_forces wrote:Anyone read the latest TIOPS article? Anything worthwhile about kessel?

The Onion of Hockey (aka TIOPS) says the Penguins are looking for 1 of 2 scenarios for a Kessel trade:

1. A Neal for Hornqvist type swap, where the player coming back for Kessel is a more complete, 200 foot player. TIOPS says this is the primary objective, and the Pittsburgh is open to retaining a small percentage of Kessel's contract.

2. Opening up about 4M in cap space, and having a young NHL player coming back.

TIOPS says there is interest from Arizona, Nashville, and Chicago.
---states Poile likes Kessel. Talking about a Kessel for Craig Smith centered deal
---states Hawks have buyers remorse over Panarin for Saad, and that Saad would be the player coming back for Penguins. Then goes on to say the increased speed is limiting Saad's effectiveness, where others say he just had an off year and will rebound.
---Arizona is seen because of scenario 2.


-Craig Smith would be a good start but I'd want more from Nashville.

-I have no interest in Saad at 6M, he needs to prove that this past season wasn't the norm for him.

-The ultimate wild card here is can Kessel plus get the Pens the #5 pick? If so, I would really consider it. Finding a way then to get from #5 to #1 for Rasmus Dahlin could then be achievable. IMO Rasmus Dahlin can be a franchise defenseman the Pens could build around for a decade. I wouldn't let that opportunity slip by if the Pens could do it.
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