As the Chanukah/ Christmas season approaches, we all get certain things in our minds such as gifts, snow, long lines at the mall, gifts, Santa, his elves and reign deer, the same twelve songs played 24-7, gifts, movies like Christmas Story, Miracle on 34th Street, Christmas Vacation, Die Hard, Bad Santa, BOOZE and finally gifts.So in the spirit of the holiday we at View from the Igloo have put together our Chanukah/ Christmas wish list for the holiday season.
1) A stay at home physical defenseman
We’ve been asking for one since Ulf Samuelsson left a decade ago and still have yet to get one outside of Brooks Orpik that is capable of hitting and actually covering people at one time. Sadly the next closest thing we have had is Jamie Pushor and Eric Cairns. Credit to Shero for going after Hannan though losing out, but I can’t figure out why he signed Sydor as a back up plan.
2) Bob Errey fired
I am starting to think the mute button was invented because of Bob Errey. There are few things more annoying than Errey during a broadcast with his homerism, inability to tell who the penalty is on and constantly back patting himself when he sees something on the ice that everyone else saw but said nothing because they knew it was meaningless. Yet Errey continues to bombard our ears with attempts at humor and cuteness that make a Devils-Wild game look exciting and completely idiotic analysis. For a guy that played hockey as a career, he shows so little knowledge at times you really have to wonder. I find myself muting the Pens game more and more.
3) A coach that knows X’s and O’s
Part of me likes Therrien, and while he may be good at developing players, he is not good at using established players. His constant line juggling is insane, and half his scratches don’t make sense not to mention has shown the inability to use guys like Christensen and Ruutu to their strengths.
4) Resign Laraque
Anyone who thinks Laraque hasn’t made an impact on this team either A) doesn’t remember how bad things were before he was here or B) is just an idiot. See my previous article on why we should keep him on this team for some years to come.
5) Ryan Whitney to grow a set
Seriously, I’ve never seen a player so fearful as Whitney. He seems utterly afraid to shoot the puck unless going for a back door pass and he definitely hates being hit. You’re an offensive defenseman whose 6’4 Ryan, really, grow some damn balls and take the hit in the corner and shoot the puck.
6) A scoring winger who can ACTUALLY keep up with Crosby.
What a waste. I’m tired of Crosby get the puck and shoot up ice only to find his wingers are still just up by center ice. Can we have someone that can keep up with him? Please? Most importantly, can that guy be a sniper? Yea yea, It’s hard to find and all so it’s down on the list but still I feel like we are wasting half of Crosby’s potential. Taters has played well this season and Colby is Colby but imagine Crosby with someone with some offensive firepower next to him. He could get over 150+ per season.
7) Marc Andre Fleury to take the next step.
Developing goalies is a crapshoot as it often takes them to develop into something. I hope that he will eventually see the light as he is easily one of the most talented goaltenders of all time but there’s something that seems to be missing. Some my call it confidence, some may say consistency whatever. He has shown the ability to make any and all saves but he can’t string them together during a course of the game. By any means there’s no reason to give up on the guy as he is still young enough to still become a franchise netminder.
8) Eric Christensen to also see the light.
Christensen at this point is a shootout guy. I like his shot and he has improved his skating this season but he still there seems to be something missing in his head. Sure he suffers from Ryan Whitneyitis but he’s trying. Sure he can’t get his shot on net half the time. Sure he can’t do jackshit in the corners but the talent is just oozing off this guy. He could be the sniper for Crosby but again there seems to be some sort of block. I have not seen much improvement in Christensen’s game either, partly to him being scratched every other game
9) Mark Recchi to hang them up.
Look I like Mark Recchi. Really, I do but come on man who are you kidding? I know you are collecting a paycheck but really you can afford to hang up the skates and get on with your life’s work. You’re effort is noticeable but the game has passed you by and you no longer have an role on this team outside of being a 4th liner. When the Pens are busy scratching better players in the 4th line role, it’s about time to look at yourself in the mirror and be honest to yourself. The fact that Recchi is Therrien’s pacifier doesn’t help either. Hopefully this season, Recchi can come to terms with the fact that he is nothing more than a player coach/healthy scratch.