The trade deadline has passed as the Penguins Ray Shero has shown the Pittsburgh area why he was hired in the first place. To make this team a winner, for today and for tomorrow.
Traded away from the Penguins were fan favorite Colby Armstrong, Eric Christensen, and Angelo Esposito, with a three draft picks. The Pens pick up Marian Hossa, Pascal Dupuis, from Atlanta and Hal Gill from the Leafs.
Esposito was a trade day "wow" when he fell from lofty expectations to where the Pens could draft him. He has since not lived up to the hype from two years ago and as a center was no needed in this team which is deep and young down the middle. Maybe he was drafted just for this purpose?
Christensen was a sniper but only when he wanted to be and in the shootouts. He never became very consistent, either because of playing time or it just wasn’t in him. He also took more than his share of hooking penalties.
Armstrong is the one that will be missed, but much more for his locker room friends and chemistry than his play. He has waffled between being a scorer and a big hitter for the past two years and never really got settled or comfortable with either. We’ll see if Hossa can fill those shoes off the ice.
On the ice, Hossa will exceed the output of many players. If he and Sidney Crosby can find true chemistry, it will be magic on the ice. With Evgeni Malkin, Ryan Malone and Petr Sykora fronting one of the top lines and Crosby, Hossa and some lucky bastard running the other top line, teams will have fits trying to stop the goals from going in. And the last time we played the Thrashers, I thought Dupuis was one of their best players on the ice.
The other need for the Penguins, was for a strong defensive defenseman. Does a seasoned six foot seven gorilla with a wingspan bigger than Jordan Staal’s sound like a good idea? Gill was a plus player for the Leafs and cleared the front of the net like a bulldozer on a construction site.
And finally, these new Penguin players remind me of some additions the previous General Manager made in the hay day of the Stanley Cup wins. Remember a scoring winger, a tough winger and a tall defensive defenseman coming at trade deadline?