Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Pens Deadline Fallout

The deadline has come and gone, and the Penguins made two deals in an attempt to bolster their roster. One wasn’t a big surprise, the other shocked the league and everyone did a double take.

Hal Gill for a 2nd and 5th round pick
Shero addressed the Pens lack of physical blue line play by acquiring Hal Gill from the Toronto Maple Leafs. Gill isn’t great, but he’s a definite upgrade over Scuderi and while not the most physical is physical enough. Plus he can clear the net. The price was a bit high, as is his contract that goes through next year, but all in all he will help.

Marian Hossa and Pascal Dupuis for Colby Armstrong, Erik Christensen, Angelo Esposito and a 1st round pick
I am not a fan of this deal at all. I don’t think this is the year for the Pens but Shero and ownership apparently does. While Armstrong is replaceable and I don’t think Christensen could fully develop playing behind Crosby, Malkin and Staal, their loss will be felt especially in the locker room. Losing Esposito, arguably the Pens best prospect and a 1st rounder will take away from an already depleted prospect pool.

Dupuis was brought in for his penalty killing skills, and it’s quite obvious why Hossa was traded for. He will give Crosby the much needed winger as Hossa is one of the best in the league.

This trade has some long term implications and I’m sad to say they’re all bad. Hossa is going to seek $7+ million for his new deal, and while the Pens can afford it they will become the new Tampa Bay when Malkin gets his new deal, having the big three of Crosby, Malkin and Hossa. If they don’t resign him and don’t win the cup (both slim, but I think the former the less likely sadly), then this deal will be nothing but a waste. Either way, the Pens lose.

I feel Shero gave up too much this deadline. It’s not that the return was little, it’s that the price was too steep and the long term implications too great. Frankly, I liked the deadlines where the Pens did nothing better than this.

No comments: