Friday, March 02, 2007

March of the Penguins

And so begins their quest for the cup. Pittsburgh caught a break last night against the Rangers, barely edging out a game they had no business winning. Lucky for them they have a player by the likes of Jordan Stall, who seems to have a knack for scoring short-handed goals, and a player by the likes of Sidney Crosby, who seems to have a devastating affect on shootouts. Don't be fooled though, these two players alone will not win them even the first round in the playoffs, so the young team with an endless supply of talent didn't hurt themselves by being active at and around the trade deadline. Grabbing the services of veterans Gary Roberts and Georges Laraque was sick. Not only do they both look like they are going to fit right in, with Roberts on the line with Crosby, and the take no prisoners playing style Laraque brings to the table, Crosby shouldn't be losing anymore sleep at night worrying about who's going to plaster him to the boards next.

Every team has a weakness though, and for Pittsburgh, it might just be goal tending. Marc-Andre Fleury is letting in a mass amount of goals lately, and Jocelyn Thibault isn't looking much better. I don't think either of these guys are ready for the playoffs, but I've been surprised before. With 14 million to spare though, they could have bought pretty much any goalie they wanted. Just take a look at what Biron was sent away for. Anyway, instead, the Penguins went out and got Nolan Schaefer from the Sharks. Nolan Schaefer has played 7 games in the NHL. He was 5-1-0 with a 1.88 goals against average. Great numbers, but he was looking for the backup job over in San Jose, what he does in Pittsburgh remains to be seen. Would I want to be the team to play these guys in the 1st round? Not a chance, and whoever does has definitely got their work cut out for them.


At March 2, 2007 at 1:44 p.m. , Blogger Zanstorm said...

If Fleury doesn't shape up quick, the Pens are going nowhere!! He's picked a bad time to crap out.

At March 2, 2007 at 1:58 p.m. , Blogger Beaner said...

You'd think with all that extra money, the Pens Would to go out and get a decent, proven goalie for the playoffs.

If one thing kills them, that will be it.

At March 2, 2007 at 2:02 p.m. , Blogger Temujin said...

I remember a few people talking (it might have been at BoO) about whether Fleury would bounce back after a playoff loss. They speculated that he might go into a Cloutier-type spiral.

It's hard to say, but I wonder if he has the testicular fortitude to overcome something like that.

At March 2, 2007 at 3:07 p.m. , Blogger Zanstorm said...

Well Fleury is pretty young still. The jury is out. When he's on his game, he reminds me of Patrick Roy.

Pittsburgh can't just acquire another goalie because Fleury is on a cold streak. They have to stand by him and hope he gets out of his funk.

At March 2, 2007 at 3:32 p.m. , Blogger Beaner said...

They need not acquire another goalie because he's cold, but because he's not playoff proven. If he gets hurt then what? If you want a chance in the playoffs for the cup, goal tending is a major key element

At March 2, 2007 at 3:49 p.m. , Blogger Zanstorm said...

Well he is their #1 goalie. He needs experience ASAP. If he fucks up this season, then they try again with him next season.
Most teams have a bonafide #1 goalie and a $500,000 backup goalie that probably won't get the job done.

At March 2, 2007 at 6:41 p.m. , Blogger Temujin said...

Oh, the fun we could have with this guy's last name...

Bring out the jersey's! Let's create some linemates for this guy!

At March 3, 2007 at 12:21 p.m. , Anonymous The Chief Canuck said...

Nolan Schaeffer will surprise you. I think it was a superb pickup by Pittsburgh.

The only reason he isn't playing regularly in the league is because he's been behind a 4 million dollar goalie in Nabokov and another guy who's better and has a higher salary.

This trade was made for next year, and Fleury had better have a good year, or Schaeffer will be taking the number 1 role from him.


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Waiting For Stanley was created in June 2006.