An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby longtimefan on Mon Aug 17, 2020 8:31 pm

FLPensFan wrote:
Jim wrote:
Rutherford also said he has permission to spend to the cap, but he'd prefer not to. He'd like to be 2-3M under the cap going into next season to have flexibility...


The a little under for deadline deals is rather normal.

But does this help people finally admit that these writers just pump out click-bait bull-poo that no one should take seriously unless it is a direct quote from a named source?

I think it depends on the writers. Rossi and Yohe said the spending would be down, and the Athletic ran with it. Even some of their bigger guys like Custance quoted the article.

Dejan and Molinari a day or two later had an article with a complete 180, basically saying the not spending to the cap was false. They didn't name sources either.

I think part of the problem is, some of these writers think their sources are better than they really are. DK and Molinari are pretty much the straightest shooters out there right now in terms of Pittsburgh hockey media. Madden has more connections than people give him credit for, but, it's hard for people to separate the blowhard crap from the real legit crap from him at times.


I agree for the most part, but Rossi and Yohe should know better. As should their employers. Certainly it's click bait, but that's become a big part of the business. A couple of years ago I abandoned DK for the Athletic. Mainly because the drama was thick at DK, and everyone was abandoning him. The Athletic seemed to be signing every decent writer in the city. My views are changing. DK was able to steady his ship, and getting Molinari was a lifeline. Yohe, on the other hand, has run with a few stories and ended up looking really foolish. The most infamous being that JJ would definitely be traded the weekend before last season's opener, had been told as much, and was told to wait word. It brought a rare public rebuke from JR. He suggested it was negligent for Yohe to write the story, and openly asked why he wouldn't get a phone call to confirm before he ran with it. He thought it was shoddy, and said so.

My biggest gripe is that everybody wants to get the scoop first, and end up not doing due diligence. It's hard enough deciphering JR's GM speak, without getting half baked information from the reporters we rely on for real news.

On Mark Madden. I'm a similar age to MM, and was aware of him before he got his start. He's a Pens fan from way back, and was close friends to a season ticket holder in the same section as my sister. So a heavy set teenager would often be there before the games arguing hockey with his friend. Unlike everybody else, who write they must stay unattached in order to be objective, Madden makes no bones about being a Pens fan. To the point of describing himself as a Pens fan first, and hockey fan second. When he started on radio, shock jock talk radio had become the rage. He was a natural, with his loud, abrasive personality. The problem is, he let his on air personality take over, and ran with personal agendas. So you never know what to believe with him. He could be singing the praises of an acquisition one day, and he'll be a pariah the next because he declined to be on Madden's show. It saddens me, because he is more like us than anybody else. A fan speaking as a fan. Connected? As well as anyone in the city. He could be the best source in the city, but he chose another path. I should preface this by saying I have seldom listened to him since he left ESPN years ago. I just can't get through all the BS. But I do respect his knowledge. I just have no idea when he's being sincere. He's either kissing butt, or demonizing someone.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby FLPensFan on Mon Aug 17, 2020 8:46 pm

longtimefan wrote:
FLPensFan wrote:
Jim wrote:
Rutherford also said he has permission to spend to the cap, but he'd prefer not to. He'd like to be 2-3M under the cap going into next season to have flexibility...


The a little under for deadline deals is rather normal.

But does this help people finally admit that these writers just pump out click-bait bull-poo that no one should take seriously unless it is a direct quote from a named source?

I think it depends on the writers. Rossi and Yohe said the spending would be down, and the Athletic ran with it. Even some of their bigger guys like Custance quoted the article.

Dejan and Molinari a day or two later had an article with a complete 180, basically saying the not spending to the cap was false. They didn't name sources either.

I think part of the problem is, some of these writers think their sources are better than they really are. DK and Molinari are pretty much the straightest shooters out there right now in terms of Pittsburgh hockey media. Madden has more connections than people give him credit for, but, it's hard for people to separate the blowhard crap from the real legit crap from him at times.


I agree for the most part, but Rossi and Yohe should know better. As should their employers. Certainly it's click bait, but that's become a big part of the business. A couple of years ago I abandoned DK for the Athletic. Mainly because the drama was thick at DK, and everyone was abandoning him. The Athletic seemed to be signing every decent writer in the city. My views are changing. DK was able to steady his ship, and getting Molinari was a lifeline. Yohe, on the other hand, has run with a few stories and ended up looking really foolish. The most infamous being that JJ would definitely be traded the weekend before last season's opener, had been told as much, and was told to wait word. It brought a rare public rebuke from JR. He suggested it was negligent for Yohe to write the story, and openly asked why he wouldn't get a phone call to confirm before he ran with it. He thought it was shoddy, and said so.

My biggest gripe is that everybody wants to get the scoop first, and end up not doing due diligence. It's hard enough deciphering JR's GM speak, without getting half baked information from the reporters we rely on for real news.

On Mark Madden. I'm a similar age to MM, and was aware of him before he got his start. He's a Pens fan from way back, and was close friends to a season ticket holder in the same section as my sister. So a heavy set teenager would often be there before the games arguing hockey with his friend. Unlike everybody else, who write they must stay unattached in order to be objective, Madden makes no bones about being a Pens fan. To the point of describing himself as a Pens fan first, and hockey fan second. When he started on radio, shock jock talk radio had become the rage. He was a natural, with his loud, abrasive personality. The problem is, he let his on air personality take over, and ran with personal agendas. So you never know what to believe with him. He could be singing the praises of an acquisition one day, and he'll be a pariah the next because he declined to be on Madden's show. It saddens me, because he is more like us than anybody else. A fan speaking as a fan. Connected? As well as anyone in the city. He could be the best source in the city, but he chose another path. I should preface this by saying I have seldom listened to him since he left ESPN years ago. I just can't get through all the BS. But I do respect his knowledge. I just have no idea when he's being sincere. He's either kissing butt, or demonizing someone.

I never really listened to Madden when I was in Pittsburgh. I knew of him. I think he was still more in wrestling announcing at the time. I think a lot of his schtick comes that gig. But he knows his hockey. He was supposed a pretty good dek hockey player back in his days, which is why he is still involved in dek hockey tournaments and traveling teams. I still remember the bet he had with Lemieux that he couldn't score off the faceoff, and when Lemieux did it at home, he pointed up to the pressbox towards Madden. I think Madden bet something like $6600 towards the Lemieux foundation that he couldn't do it.

I don't listen to Madden much when it comes to any other sport but hockey. Down in Florida, I'll put him on sometimes on my drive home from work whenever NHL Radio guys are talking useless stuff. Most people I have heard say that when you get past the persona, he's a pretty nice guy. It also seems like when his mother died, his work and his on-air persona got more intense. Maybe his mother kept him a little grounded.

I'm not a die-hard Madden follower, and really, I'm not a die-hard any media follower. I am not in the know of anything. I have no insiders. I don't think I even have any outsiders. LOL I just like to relay what the media is saying. Maybe some day I'll start a scorecard and see who tells the most truth. If there was one be all, end all source that I would trust right now when it comes to hockey.....it's Dave Molinari. I've never known Dave to dip his toes into half truths, rumors, and conjectures. I guess that's why he is in the Hall of Fame. I remember my parents getting the PG when I was a kid, and, not caring about anything else, picking it up and reading the hockey stuff in the sports section, and still remember seeing Molinari's picture next to some of the articles. He's been at this longer than anyone else that I know of.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby largegarlic on Mon Aug 17, 2020 9:06 pm

I haven't listened to Madden much at all recently, since I've been working from home and would only listen when I could catch him on the commute home. But I would try to tune in when he was talking to guests who knew hockey, national or local. He seems to tone his schtick down when talking to someone else who knows the game, and it's just straight hockey talk. If he says something about what he heard from a Pens' source during those conversations, I tend to believe him, not so much when he's just ranting about something when berating yinzer callers.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby longtimefan on Mon Aug 17, 2020 9:15 pm

ville5 wrote:
FLPensFan wrote:Reports starting to surface that Penguins are going to sign LW Luke Stevens. 6'4" 220. He was a 5th round pick of Carolina, and, is the son of Kevin Stevens. Not sure if this means there is another in the works. Rutherford told Molinari they were going to sign someone, but it wasn't one of the recent college UFAs whose draft rights expired. He also said there was one of those recent college UFAs drafted by other teams that they did want, but he wanted to go another way. Maybe this was Stevens. Maybe he wanted to go Boston?

I dunno. Will be interesting to see if this is there only college UFA signing when it becomes official.

I've read some guess it could be Maniscalco..
RD plays with Austin. :shrug:


It appears Stevens decided to go with the team employing his dad.
https://www.dkpittsburghsports.com/2020 ... -sign-tlh/

He doesn't sound NHL ready, and I'd project more as a project. I like the name Maniscalo. He fits the profile of someone who often goes back to school for his junior year. He was 22 in February, and has hit a pretty decent stride.
https://www.houseofsparky.com/2019/11/2 ... defenseman

He's a RHD who fits the Pens profile of being able to move the puck. He went undrafted in 2019, but has had two nice college seasons, and had 32 points in 36 games this season. He's got nice size, larger than he was listed for the draft. So possibly a growth spurt. He's listed at 6'2", 205 lb. If the Pens believe he's pro ready, he may be worth a flyer. He's at the same stage of his college career as Marino was. He's also a right shot. It depends on what the scouts think, but if they like him, he adds to their depth at the weakest position in the system.

Marino's journey was paved by Stevens and Young. Connections help. If they like Maniscalo, they have the capacity of putting on quite a recruiting blitz. He plays with Mario's kid, and is an alum of the famous St Mary's-Shuttuck high school program Sid came through, not to mention Blueger and JJ. He's from Montgomery County, not far from Philly. ASU was relieved when he announced he'd be staying, as he had NHL offers. He may not be the guy, but he fits to a T of what they're describing, as well as slotting into a position of need.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby FLPensFan on Mon Aug 17, 2020 9:41 pm

longtimefan wrote:
ville5 wrote:
FLPensFan wrote:Reports starting to surface that Penguins are going to sign LW Luke Stevens. 6'4" 220. He was a 5th round pick of Carolina, and, is the son of Kevin Stevens. Not sure if this means there is another in the works. Rutherford told Molinari they were going to sign someone, but it wasn't one of the recent college UFAs whose draft rights expired. He also said there was one of those recent college UFAs drafted by other teams that they did want, but he wanted to go another way. Maybe this was Stevens. Maybe he wanted to go Boston?

I dunno. Will be interesting to see if this is there only college UFA signing when it becomes official.

I've read some guess it could be Maniscalco..
RD plays with Austin. :shrug:


It appears Stevens decided to go with the team employing his dad.
https://www.dkpittsburghsports.com/2020 ... -sign-tlh/

He doesn't sound NHL ready, and I'd project more as a project. I like the name Maniscalo. He fits the profile of someone who often goes back to school for his junior year. He was 22 in February, and has hit a pretty decent stride.
https://www.houseofsparky.com/2019/11/2 ... defenseman

He's a RHD who fits the Pens profile of being able to move the puck. He went undrafted in 2019, but has had two nice college seasons, and had 32 points in 36 games this season. He's got nice size, larger than he was listed for the draft. So possibly a growth spurt. He's listed at 6'2", 205 lb. If the Pens believe he's pro ready, he may be worth a flyer. He's at the same stage of his college career as Marino was. He's also a right shot. It depends on what the scouts think, but if they like him, he adds to their depth at the weakest position in the system.

Marino's journey was paved by Stevens and Young. Connections help. If they like Maniscalo, they have the capacity of putting on quite a recruiting blitz. He plays with Mario's kid, and is an alum of the famous St Mary's-Shuttuck high school program Sid came through, not to mention Blueger and JJ. He's from Montgomery County, not far from Philly. ASU was relieved when he announced he'd be staying, as he had NHL offers. He may not be the guy, but he fits to a T of what they're describing, as well as slotting into a position of need.

Based off what Molinari said earlier from Rutherford, I believe Stevens is the player they "had their eye on for a few year" and wanted to sign, but "had his mind set on another team." Obviously, the Penguins would know all about the kid being Artie's son.

Rutherford also said the person they were going to sign (not a draftee of another team) had decided to skip their senior year because of the uncertainty of college hockey for next season. Stevens played all 4 seasons at Yale, so, it wasn't him.

I would expect one more college UFA to be signed.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby longtimefan on Mon Aug 17, 2020 10:59 pm

FLPensFan wrote:Molinari just posted another article at DK's site, this time after speaking with Rutherford. Some of the things mentioned:

--Rutherford said he will "probably" let all 3 UFAs in Schultz, Sheary, and Marleau walk.

--Rutherford also said that, depending on what he can do with trades, it is very possible that all of the RFAs will not be back. One thing that hurts is that, all 8 of the Penguins RFAs have arbitration rights. Rutherford further stated that some of their RFAs likely won't even get a qualifying offer from the team, because, if there is any doubt an arbitration reward can put you over the cap, they won't run that risk.

--Molinari started the article by referencing Rutherford's first trade and, basically said this is what Rutherford is going to look for this summer...not necessarily getting the better player (like Neal for Hornqvist), but getting the player that fits the team best and "brings in a different voice and changes chemistry in the room." Rutherford said he is looking to add one or two players who can change that up.

--Rutherford also made statements about lack of hunger, that showed up in Games 3/4 against the Isles, and returned in Game 3 against Montreal. He said some players seem to have become too comfortable. They aren't willing to battle and put in the work they need to win a game or a series.

--Rutherford listed the priorities as bolstering the depth at center behind Crosby and Malkin and upgrading the defense. But along with that, sounds like he wants to get players that are hungry for a Cup and will do what it takes to win.

******************************************************************************************
My takeaways/reading between the lines (my lines may be different than your lines... :D )

--I think this spells out in no uncertain terms the end of Murray. They won't take a chance on him getting a huge arbitration reward. I would also be very surprised to see Jared McCann and Dom Simon return. I think of any of the RFAs beyond Murray and Jarry, McCann and Simon both will make the most of any of the Penguins RFAs
-----> Going into the season, everyone was talking about McCann in the 3-4M range on a new deal. To me, he had a disappointing season. He seemed like he could have really taken off. Instead his goal total went down while his point total of 35 was the same as last year. If you use the general 1 point - 100K salary guideline...McCann could be looking at 3.5M AAV. I don't think he's worth that right now. They'd be crazy to let him walk away without a QO and get nothing, but trade bait....maybe
----->Simon in a similar boat. His points/game totals dipped a little this season, but, based on others around the league, 22 & 28 points the last 2 seasons could put him up in the 1.75-2.25M range. I don't think the Penguins can take that risk, especially coming off a major shoulder surgery.

--Depth at center behind Sid and Geno. Is that the strong scent of Domi I smell? Seriously, he's 25. If Malkin retires from the NHL after the next 2 seasons when his contract is up, Domi would be a nice bridge at 27-28 years old.

--Will the upgrade at defense involve removing Jack Johnson as a top 6 defensemen? Even if they can't move him, the decision to not gift him a top 6 spot would be much welcomed.


It's tough trying to decipher GM speak. First of all, I tend to believe floating the idea of not wanting to get trapped by arbitration is a message to the players and their agents. The team is in no position to play salary games. There will be no arbitration. If McCann and Simon want to stay, they have to come to quick resolutions. Simon shouldn't be a problem. He may not be ready to play to start the season. Accepting what they offer for a year is common sense. McCann could be trickier, although I'm not sure they've soured to the point where they are looking to move him. I think it's likely he's on the list of players most available to b traded, but it's far from certain. He has a tantalizing skill set. In fairness to him, his versatility ha been a curse. He's just been bounced around too much. By the playoffs, they were convinced his shot would fix their powerplay. Last season he had 3 SHG in 30+ games. Yet he wasn't on the PK rotation this season. They'd move him in the right deal, and he has value. But they will be apprehensive to do so. They really haven't given him a chance to develop at a position. If he doesn't sign, they will qualify him but move his rights. They'd like to have it handled before it comes to that. I think that holds true with everyone of them, with goaltending being a separate entity. Both are arbitration eligible. Jarry doesn't want to get too sure of himself, and he needs to sign quickly. His leverage goes up as soon as Murray is moved. I think the message is nothing is going to linger. Certainty is the keyword. It's making it clear arbitration isn't really an option.

Max Domi raises a number of red flags. He's had a very uneven career. Where it doesn't fit is with the certainty concept. Not unless you are sure what it's going to cost to sign him. I've seen some suggest a trade centered around McCann, but if arbitration is your fear, your exposure is much higher with Domi. Regardless, Domi isn't going to come cheap. Are they sure he's worth the commitment? He wants to play C, but seems to always get bumped to LW. His profile is top 6, not 3C. The Pens aren't in need of a top 6 winger either. I'm not against the idea. I've been a Domi fan for a long time. I just think they need to be sold on it working.

What I openly question is his mention of center ice depth. I get it , but am a bit puzzled by the approach. If you really want to find out what you have, why not try Blueger there? He had his ups and downs offensively, but showed some potential to be able to chip in before a late season slump. He showed well in what amounted to a 3C role this season. If he's capable of taking another leap next year, it's possible he develops into a solid 3C. And he's at a bargain price. Before spending assets and/or cash, maybe they should run with Teddy. Perhaps Tanev stays with him, and McCann ends up on the wing. That is some imposing speed. Just a thought. You can search further in season if he falls flat. I just think he deserves first shot. It benefits the team in a lot of ways. Why not find out what he has to offer.

JJ is a strange situation. They're willing to move him, and there's apparently been mild interest in the past. It's a task for JR, but one he's managed to navigate before. Hunwick's deal just expired this season. If he stays, the construction of the new staff will help determine his role. He's been sub par, no question. But a lot of good teams manage the minutes of the bottom pair better than the Pens. If they can move him, they will. They tried to last off season. Most agreed that one of JJ or Gudbranson would have to move on last season. JJ was odds on to be the guy, until Marino relegated EG to the bench. So blame Marino. :D

The reality is, JJ would have been traded last summer if Kessel wouldn't had vetoed the the Wild trade. Guerin has since become their GM, so the point is moot. However, is it possible Guerin would take JJ in a trade centered around Dumba and Rask for Murray and JJ, with perhaps some moving parts. Would you do such a deal?

I should preface that with saying that my top priority would be moving out the contracts of Letang, Hornqvist, Bjugstad, and JJ. I'm not suggesting it will be easy. But it isn't out of the question. Moving the four would clear $19.9M from the cap. Which would give them the flexibility they'd need. The only one I'd take a Rask like contract for is JJ, and that's a last resort. I'd much prefer not. I've heard no medical updates on Bjugstad. Was there a timeline? My hunch is he'll end of on legitimate LTIR. Regardless of our far too close observations, Letang is easily considered a top 4 defenseman, and in the most recent article I saw, was still rated 15th in the league. He would have appeal to a number of teams. Hornqvist is tougher because he'll be 34 with 3 years left. But he also played to a 27 goal pace. And has consistently throughout his career. He also didn't have the benefit of having a true line. That's what I consider the #1 priority, although they likely disagree. Those 4 contracts account for nearly 25% of the cap. Find a way to move all of them, and build around what remains.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby longtimefan on Mon Aug 17, 2020 11:33 pm

FLPensFan wrote:
longtimefan wrote:
ville5 wrote:
FLPensFan wrote:Reports starting to surface that Penguins are going to sign LW Luke Stevens. 6'4" 220. He was a 5th round pick of Carolina, and, is the son of Kevin Stevens. Not sure if this means there is another in the works. Rutherford told Molinari they were going to sign someone, but it wasn't one of the recent college UFAs whose draft rights expired. He also said there was one of those recent college UFAs drafted by other teams that they did want, but he wanted to go another way. Maybe this was Stevens. Maybe he wanted to go Boston?

I dunno. Will be interesting to see if this is there only college UFA signing when it becomes official.

I've read some guess it could be Maniscalco..
RD plays with Austin. :shrug:


It appears Stevens decided to go with the team employing his dad.
https://www.dkpittsburghsports.com/2020 ... -sign-tlh/

He doesn't sound NHL ready, and I'd project more as a project. I like the name Maniscalo. He fits the profile of someone who often goes back to school for his junior year. He was 22 in February, and has hit a pretty decent stride.
https://www.houseofsparky.com/2019/11/2 ... defenseman

He's a RHD who fits the Pens profile of being able to move the puck. He went undrafted in 2019, but has had two nice college seasons, and had 32 points in 36 games this season. He's got nice size, larger than he was listed for the draft. So possibly a growth spurt. He's listed at 6'2", 205 lb. If the Pens believe he's pro ready, he may be worth a flyer. He's at the same stage of his college career as Marino was. He's also a right shot. It depends on what the scouts think, but if they like him, he adds to their depth at the weakest position in the system.

Marino's journey was paved by Stevens and Young. Connections help. If they like Maniscalo, they have the capacity of putting on quite a recruiting blitz. He plays with Mario's kid, and is an alum of the famous St Mary's-Shuttuck high school program Sid came through, not to mention Blueger and JJ. He's from Montgomery County, not far from Philly. ASU was relieved when he announced he'd be staying, as he had NHL offers. He may not be the guy, but he fits to a T of what they're describing, as well as slotting into a position of need.

Based off what Molinari said earlier from Rutherford, I believe Stevens is the player they "had their eye on for a few year" and wanted to sign, but "had his mind set on another team." Obviously, the Penguins would know all about the kid being Artie's son.

Rutherford also said the person they were going to sign (not a draftee of another team) had decided to skip their senior year because of the uncertainty of college hockey for next season. Stevens played all 4 seasons at Yale, so, it wasn't him.

I would expect one more college UFA to be signed.


Maniscalco fits the profile although he's only going into his junior season. He turned down several offers to sign and announced his intentions to return to ASU. I found this profile on him from March.

https://lastwordonhockey.com/2020/03/16 ... ts-part-3/

Josh Maniscalco, RHD, Arizona State, 6’2″ 205 lbs, Sophomore
21-year-old Maniscalco has been an important part of the Sun Devils as they have transitioned into Division 1 hockey. He put up 11 goals and 32 points in 36 games this past season. Maniscalco is a big defender who is willing to play a very physical game in the defensive end of the ice. He can throw a big hit but is disciplined enough not to get himself out of position and battles hard on the boards and in front of the net. He is also good in the offensive zone, with a huge point shot that other teams must make plans to defend on the power play. He is a very good skater for his size and this helps him to play a 200-foot game.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby FLPensFan on Tue Aug 18, 2020 12:17 am

longtimefan wrote:
FLPensFan wrote:
longtimefan wrote:
ville5 wrote:
FLPensFan wrote:Reports starting to surface that Penguins are going to sign LW Luke Stevens. 6'4" 220. He was a 5th round pick of Carolina, and, is the son of Kevin Stevens. Not sure if this means there is another in the works. Rutherford told Molinari they were going to sign someone, but it wasn't one of the recent college UFAs whose draft rights expired. He also said there was one of those recent college UFAs drafted by other teams that they did want, but he wanted to go another way. Maybe this was Stevens. Maybe he wanted to go Boston?

I dunno. Will be interesting to see if this is there only college UFA signing when it becomes official.

I've read some guess it could be Maniscalco..
RD plays with Austin. :shrug:


It appears Stevens decided to go with the team employing his dad.
https://www.dkpittsburghsports.com/2020 ... -sign-tlh/

He doesn't sound NHL ready, and I'd project more as a project. I like the name Maniscalo. He fits the profile of someone who often goes back to school for his junior year. He was 22 in February, and has hit a pretty decent stride.
https://www.houseofsparky.com/2019/11/2 ... defenseman

He's a RHD who fits the Pens profile of being able to move the puck. He went undrafted in 2019, but has had two nice college seasons, and had 32 points in 36 games this season. He's got nice size, larger than he was listed for the draft. So possibly a growth spurt. He's listed at 6'2", 205 lb. If the Pens believe he's pro ready, he may be worth a flyer. He's at the same stage of his college career as Marino was. He's also a right shot. It depends on what the scouts think, but if they like him, he adds to their depth at the weakest position in the system.

Marino's journey was paved by Stevens and Young. Connections help. If they like Maniscalo, they have the capacity of putting on quite a recruiting blitz. He plays with Mario's kid, and is an alum of the famous St Mary's-Shuttuck high school program Sid came through, not to mention Blueger and JJ. He's from Montgomery County, not far from Philly. ASU was relieved when he announced he'd be staying, as he had NHL offers. He may not be the guy, but he fits to a T of what they're describing, as well as slotting into a position of need.

Based off what Molinari said earlier from Rutherford, I believe Stevens is the player they "had their eye on for a few year" and wanted to sign, but "had his mind set on another team." Obviously, the Penguins would know all about the kid being Artie's son.

Rutherford also said the person they were going to sign (not a draftee of another team) had decided to skip their senior year because of the uncertainty of college hockey for next season. Stevens played all 4 seasons at Yale, so, it wasn't him.

I would expect one more college UFA to be signed.


Maniscalco fits the profile although he's only going into his junior season. He turned down several offers to sign and announced his intentions to return to ASU. I found this profile on him from March.

https://lastwordonhockey.com/2020/03/16 ... ts-part-3/

Josh Maniscalco, RHD, Arizona State, 6’2″ 205 lbs, Sophomore
21-year-old Maniscalco has been an important part of the Sun Devils as they have transitioned into Division 1 hockey. He put up 11 goals and 32 points in 36 games this past season. Maniscalco is a big defender who is willing to play a very physical game in the defensive end of the ice. He can throw a big hit but is disciplined enough not to get himself out of position and battles hard on the boards and in front of the net. He is also good in the offensive zone, with a huge point shot that other teams must make plans to defend on the power play. He is a very good skater for his size and this helps him to play a 200-foot game.

When was the last time you saw him turn down offers or state he was returning to ASU? From what I gathered, this other player they were looking at was all but ready to return to college, but, had a change of heart based on the current landscape of NCAA sports in the pandemic, and has decided to turn pro.

Is that Maniscalco?
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby FLPensFan on Tue Aug 18, 2020 12:40 am

longtimefan wrote:It's tough trying to decipher GM speak. First of all, I tend to believe floating the idea of not wanting to get trapped by arbitration is a message to the players and their agents. The team is in no position to play salary games. There will be no arbitration. If McCann and Simon want to stay, they have to come to quick resolutions. Simon shouldn't be a problem. He may not be ready to play to start the season. Accepting what they offer for a year is common sense. McCann could be trickier, although I'm not sure they've soured to the point where they are looking to move him. I think it's likely he's on the list of players most available to b traded, but it's far from certain. He has a tantalizing skill set. In fairness to him, his versatility ha been a curse. He's just been bounced around too much. By the playoffs, they were convinced his shot would fix their powerplay. Last season he had 3 SHG in 30+ games. Yet he wasn't on the PK rotation this season. They'd move him in the right deal, and he has value. But they will be apprehensive to do so. They really haven't given him a chance to develop at a position. If he doesn't sign, they will qualify him but move his rights. They'd like to have it handled before it comes to that. I think that holds true with everyone of them, with goaltending being a separate entity. Both are arbitration eligible. Jarry doesn't want to get too sure of himself, and he needs to sign quickly. His leverage goes up as soon as Murray is moved. I think the message is nothing is going to linger. Certainty is the keyword. It's making it clear arbitration isn't really an option.

Max Domi raises a number of red flags. He's had a very uneven career. Where it doesn't fit is with the certainty concept. Not unless you are sure what it's going to cost to sign him. I've seen some suggest a trade centered around McCann, but if arbitration is your fear, your exposure is much higher with Domi. Regardless, Domi isn't going to come cheap. Are they sure he's worth the commitment? He wants to play C, but seems to always get bumped to LW. His profile is top 6, not 3C. The Pens aren't in need of a top 6 winger either. I'm not against the idea. I've been a Domi fan for a long time. I just think they need to be sold on it working.

What I openly question is his mention of center ice depth. I get it , but am a bit puzzled by the approach. If you really want to find out what you have, why not try Blueger there? He had his ups and downs offensively, but showed some potential to be able to chip in before a late season slump. He showed well in what amounted to a 3C role this season. If he's capable of taking another leap next year, it's possible he develops into a solid 3C. And he's at a bargain price. Before spending assets and/or cash, maybe they should run with Teddy. Perhaps Tanev stays with him, and McCann ends up on the wing. That is some imposing speed. Just a thought. You can search further in season if he falls flat. I just think he deserves first shot. It benefits the team in a lot of ways. Why not find out what he has to offer.

JJ is a strange situation. They're willing to move him, and there's apparently been mild interest in the past. It's a task for JR, but one he's managed to navigate before. Hunwick's deal just expired this season. If he stays, the construction of the new staff will help determine his role. He's been sub par, no question. But a lot of good teams manage the minutes of the bottom pair better than the Pens. If they can move him, they will. They tried to last off season. Most agreed that one of JJ or Gudbranson would have to move on last season. JJ was odds on to be the guy, until Marino relegated EG to the bench. So blame Marino. :D

The reality is, JJ would have been traded last summer if Kessel wouldn't had vetoed the the Wild trade. Guerin has since become their GM, so the point is moot. However, is it possible Guerin would take JJ in a trade centered around Dumba and Rask for Murray and JJ, with perhaps some moving parts. Would you do such a deal?

I should preface that with saying that my top priority would be moving out the contracts of Letang, Hornqvist, Bjugstad, and JJ. I'm not suggesting it will be easy. But it isn't out of the question. Moving the four would clear $19.9M from the cap. Which would give them the flexibility they'd need. The only one I'd take a Rask like contract for is JJ, and that's a last resort. I'd much prefer not. I've heard no medical updates on Bjugstad. Was there a timeline? My hunch is he'll end of on legitimate LTIR. Regardless of our far too close observations, Letang is easily considered a top 4 defenseman, and in the most recent article I saw, was still rated 15th in the league. He would have appeal to a number of teams. Hornqvist is tougher because he'll be 34 with 3 years left. But he also played to a 27 goal pace. And has consistently throughout his career. He also didn't have the benefit of having a true line. That's what I consider the #1 priority, although they likely disagree. Those 4 contracts account for nearly 25% of the cap. Find a way to move all of them, and build around what remains.

On the arbitration side, I was wrong and had it backwards. Teams can walk away from HIGHER awarded amounts, not lower amounts. When the CBA was signed in 2012, the initial value was 3.5M...so, if a salary arbitration award was under 3.5M, the team was stuck with that award. They could not walk away. The threshold for walk-away rights goes up each year by the same amount the average salary increases. I saw an article from 2017 where walk-away rights threshold was a hair under 4.1M. I'd image now it's somewhere around 4.5M. That may explain GMJR's a bit better. Simon gets awarded 2M or even 2.5M in arbitration...Penguins are stuck with that amount. McCann has been all over the map. At one point, I would have gone a max of 4M. Now, I'm in the high 2M range. But if he goes to arbitration and is awarded 4M AAV, Penguins are stuck with it. I agree that McCann is probably on a short list to get traded, but could go either way because he is still young.

I could swear the year Domi put up 70 points he was the 2nd line center, not LW for Montreal. I may be wrong. I like Domi because, even though he is small, he is a battler and will go for pucks and play a little bit physical. I also think at 3C, he has the ability to be a high end 3C. His worst output is 44 points I think. That's still very good for a 3C, and you hope he can move up the lineup with injuries, and get back to a 2C output level if Malkin leaves in 2 years. But, if Domi isn't in the cards, I'd go the UFA route and take a hard look at Namestnikov, who can play center or LW. Give Geno another Russian buddy, but, Namestnikov is pretty solid at both ends of the rink. Haula would be another consideration, but, he's starting to become very injury prone. I don't have a problem trying Blueger at 3C, but, I would want a backup plan on the roster....as an example, sign Namestnikov and have him be the 3LW, however, know that if Blueger can't handle 3C duties and doesn't produce enough, you have Namestnikov that can slide into that spot.

I would definitely consider a Murray & JJ for Rask and Dumba deal, however, I'm not sure how that would work. Dumba makes 6M and is RD. I can't see them pushing Marino down to 3rd pairing. He's just too good to be stuck on that pairing. They should be getting him on the ice more.

I think a lot of things right now are dominoes. I think Letang only gets moved if they get a good young player back in return, like a Kapanen. And if that happens, then I think you have to have a Murray trade in place where you can have a Dumba or Montour type come in to play in the top 4 on RD....and both of those may depend on the ability to move Bjugstad, JJ, or Hornqvist contract.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby longtimefan on Tue Aug 18, 2020 2:10 am

longtimefan wrote:
FLPensFan wrote:
longtimefan wrote:
ville5 wrote:
FLPensFan wrote:

I've read some guess it could be Maniscalco..
RD plays with Austin. :shrug:


It appears Stevens decided to go with the team employing his dad.
https://www.dkpittsburghsports.com/2020 ... -sign-tlh/

He doesn't sound NHL ready, and I'd project more as a project. I like the name Maniscalo. He fits the profile of someone who often goes back to school for his junior year. He was 22 in February, and has hit a pretty decent stride.
https://www.houseofsparky.com/2019/11/2 ... defenseman

He's a RHD who fits the Pens profile of being able to move the puck. He went undrafted in 2019, but has had two nice college seasons, and had 32 points in 36 games this season. He's got nice size, larger than he was listed for the draft. So possibly a growth spurt. He's listed at 6'2", 205 lb. If the Pens believe he's pro ready, he may be worth a flyer. He's at the same stage of his college career as Marino was. He's also a right shot. It depends on what the scouts think, but if they like him, he adds to their depth at the weakest position in the system.

Marino's journey was paved by Stevens and Young. Connections help. If they like Maniscalo, they have the capacity of putting on quite a recruiting blitz. He plays with Mario's kid, and is an alum of the famous St Mary's-Shuttuck high school program Sid came through, not to mention Blueger and JJ. He's from Montgomery County, not far from Philly. ASU was relieved when he announced he'd be staying, as he had NHL offers. He may not be the guy, but he fits to a T of what they're describing, as well as slotting into a position of need.

Based off what Molinari said earlier from Rutherford, I believe Stevens is the player they "had their eye on for a few year" and wanted to sign, but "had his mind set on another team." Obviously, the Penguins would know all about the kid being Artie's son.

Rutherford also said the person they were going to sign (not a draftee of another team) had decided to skip their senior year because of the uncertainty of college hockey for next season. Stevens played all 4 seasons at Yale, so, it wasn't him.

I would expect one more college UFA to be signed.


Maniscalco fits the profile although he's only going into his junior season. He turned down several offers to sign and announced his intentions to return to ASU. I found this profile on him from March.

https://lastwordonhockey.com/2020/03/16 ... ts-part-3/

Josh Maniscalco, RHD, Arizona State, 6’2″ 205 lbs, Sophomore
21-year-old Maniscalco has been an important part of the Sun Devils as they have transitioned into Division 1 hockey. He put up 11 goals and 32 points in 36 games this past season. Maniscalco is a big defender who is willing to play a very physical game in the defensive end of the ice. He can throw a big hit but is disciplined enough not to get himself out of position and battles hard on the boards and in front of the net. He is also good in the offensive zone, with a huge point shot that other teams must make plans to defend on the power play. He is a very good skater for his size and this helps him to play a 200-foot game.

When was the last time you saw him turn down offers or state he was returning to ASU? From what I gathered, this other player they were looking at was all but ready to return to college, but, had a change of heart based on the current landscape of NCAA sports in the pandemic, and has decided to turn pro.

Is that Maniscalco?[/quote]

Arizona State defenseman Josh Maniscalco is returning for his junior year, per source. Maniscalco finished T-6th nationally in scoring among NCAA defensemen this season with 11-21--32 in 36 games. Had offers from a handful of NHL clubs. — Greg Cameron (@gregdcam) March 21, 2020

https://www.azcentral.com/story/sports/ ... 895213001/

Maniscalco returning for his junior season is critical for the 2020-21 defense, with Powers admitting it would have been hard to replace him as well as Brinson Pasichnuk. "For him to want to come back and have unfinished business and get that one year extra at least of polish and development speaks volumes to his maturity," Powers said. "Manny deciding to come back was by and large our biggest offseason recruit."


He's a sophomore who chose to return to school for his junior season. Possibly to enhance his value. Most of your NCAA UFA's leave after their junior or senior season. I believe it was Maestro who said he saw somebody mention him. He fits the profile of someone who decided to go back, but may be having second thoughts. He also happens to play the position they most need to add depth. The ASU connection means the Pens have unique access. I don't know if he's the player JR is referring to, but he does a pretty good job of fitting that profile. It also makes sense a kid who could have signed but decided to develop another year in school might have second thoughts when the college season is up in the air.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby longtimefan on Tue Aug 18, 2020 2:31 am

FLPensFan wrote:
longtimefan wrote:It's tough trying to decipher GM speak. First of all, I tend to believe floating the idea of not wanting to get trapped by arbitration is a message to the players and their agents. The team is in no position to play salary games. There will be no arbitration. If McCann and Simon want to stay, they have to come to quick resolutions. Simon shouldn't be a problem. He may not be ready to play to start the season. Accepting what they offer for a year is common sense. McCann could be trickier, although I'm not sure they've soured to the point where they are looking to move him. I think it's likely he's on the list of players most available to b traded, but it's far from certain. He has a tantalizing skill set. In fairness to him, his versatility ha been a curse. He's just been bounced around too much. By the playoffs, they were convinced his shot would fix their powerplay. Last season he had 3 SHG in 30+ games. Yet he wasn't on the PK rotation this season. They'd move him in the right deal, and he has value. But they will be apprehensive to do so. They really haven't given him a chance to develop at a position. If he doesn't sign, they will qualify him but move his rights. They'd like to have it handled before it comes to that. I think that holds true with everyone of them, with goaltending being a separate entity. Both are arbitration eligible. Jarry doesn't want to get too sure of himself, and he needs to sign quickly. His leverage goes up as soon as Murray is moved. I think the message is nothing is going to linger. Certainty is the keyword. It's making it clear arbitration isn't really an option.

Max Domi raises a number of red flags. He's had a very uneven career. Where it doesn't fit is with the certainty concept. Not unless you are sure what it's going to cost to sign him. I've seen some suggest a trade centered around McCann, but if arbitration is your fear, your exposure is much higher with Domi. Regardless, Domi isn't going to come cheap. Are they sure he's worth the commitment? He wants to play C, but seems to always get bumped to LW. His profile is top 6, not 3C. The Pens aren't in need of a top 6 winger either. I'm not against the idea. I've been a Domi fan for a long time. I just think they need to be sold on it working.

What I openly question is his mention of center ice depth. I get it , but am a bit puzzled by the approach. If you really want to find out what you have, why not try Blueger there? He had his ups and downs offensively, but showed some potential to be able to chip in before a late season slump. He showed well in what amounted to a 3C role this season. If he's capable of taking another leap next year, it's possible he develops into a solid 3C. And he's at a bargain price. Before spending assets and/or cash, maybe they should run with Teddy. Perhaps Tanev stays with him, and McCann ends up on the wing. That is some imposing speed. Just a thought. You can search further in season if he falls flat. I just think he deserves first shot. It benefits the team in a lot of ways. Why not find out what he has to offer.

JJ is a strange situation. They're willing to move him, and there's apparently been mild interest in the past. It's a task for JR, but one he's managed to navigate before. Hunwick's deal just expired this season. If he stays, the construction of the new staff will help determine his role. He's been sub par, no question. But a lot of good teams manage the minutes of the bottom pair better than the Pens. If they can move him, they will. They tried to last off season. Most agreed that one of JJ or Gudbranson would have to move on last season. JJ was odds on to be the guy, until Marino relegated EG to the bench. So blame Marino. :D

The reality is, JJ would have been traded last summer if Kessel wouldn't had vetoed the the Wild trade. Guerin has since become their GM, so the point is moot. However, is it possible Guerin would take JJ in a trade centered around Dumba and Rask for Murray and JJ, with perhaps some moving parts. Would you do such a deal?

I should preface that with saying that my top priority would be moving out the contracts of Letang, Hornqvist, Bjugstad, and JJ. I'm not suggesting it will be easy. But it isn't out of the question. Moving the four would clear $19.9M from the cap. Which would give them the flexibility they'd need. The only one I'd take a Rask like contract for is JJ, and that's a last resort. I'd much prefer not. I've heard no medical updates on Bjugstad. Was there a timeline? My hunch is he'll end of on legitimate LTIR. Regardless of our far too close observations, Letang is easily considered a top 4 defenseman, and in the most recent article I saw, was still rated 15th in the league. He would have appeal to a number of teams. Hornqvist is tougher because he'll be 34 with 3 years left. But he also played to a 27 goal pace. And has consistently throughout his career. He also didn't have the benefit of having a true line. That's what I consider the #1 priority, although they likely disagree. Those 4 contracts account for nearly 25% of the cap. Find a way to move all of them, and build around what remains.

On the arbitration side, I was wrong and had it backwards. Teams can walk away from HIGHER awarded amounts, not lower amounts. When the CBA was signed in 2012, the initial value was 3.5M...so, if a salary arbitration award was under 3.5M, the team was stuck with that award. They could not walk away. The threshold for walk-away rights goes up each year by the same amount the average salary increases. I saw an article from 2017 where walk-away rights threshold was a hair under 4.1M. I'd image now it's somewhere around 4.5M. That may explain GMJR's a bit better. Simon gets awarded 2M or even 2.5M in arbitration...Penguins are stuck with that amount. McCann has been all over the map. At one point, I would have gone a max of 4M. Now, I'm in the high 2M range. But if he goes to arbitration and is awarded 4M AAV, Penguins are stuck with it. I agree that McCann is probably on a short list to get traded, but could go either way because he is still young.

I could swear the year Domi put up 70 points he was the 2nd line center, not LW for Montreal. I may be wrong. I like Domi because, even though he is small, he is a battler and will go for pucks and play a little bit physical. I also think at 3C, he has the ability to be a high end 3C. His worst output is 44 points I think. That's still very good for a 3C, and you hope he can move up the lineup with injuries, and get back to a 2C output level if Malkin leaves in 2 years. But, if Domi isn't in the cards, I'd go the UFA route and take a hard look at Namestnikov, who can play center or LW. Give Geno another Russian buddy, but, Namestnikov is pretty solid at both ends of the rink. Haula would be another consideration, but, he's starting to become very injury prone. I don't have a problem trying Blueger at 3C, but, I would want a backup plan on the roster....as an example, sign Namestnikov and have him be the 3LW, however, know that if Blueger can't handle 3C duties and doesn't produce enough, you have Namestnikov that can slide into that spot.

I would definitely consider a Murray & JJ for Rask and Dumba deal, however, I'm not sure how that would work. Dumba makes 6M and is RD. I can't see them pushing Marino down to 3rd pairing. He's just too good to be stuck on that pairing. They should be getting him on the ice more.

I think a lot of things right now are dominoes. I think Letang only gets moved if they get a good young player back in return, like a Kapanen. And if that happens, then I think you have to have a Murray trade in place where you can have a Dumba or Montour type come in to play in the top 4 on RD....and both of those may depend on the ability to move Bjugstad, JJ, or Hornqvist contract.


You're correct Domi played mainly in the middle in his 72 point season. But he ended up back on the wing again. The same happened in AZ. My point is if he washes out again as a center, they really don't have room on the wing. They have to be sold on him. Plus, you can't go to arbitration with him. His award may be very volatile.

In terms of Dumba, I'm going on the assumption that they move Letang, JJ, Bjugstad, and Hornqvist. Then a Dumba deal makes a ton of sense.

I'm not much on the UFA market. Mid tier players are always overpriced. People hate JJ the player, but hate his contract worse. People love Tanev the player, but hate his contract too. It's difficult to find one of those guys who was worth his deal long term. I think it's the least efficient way to procure talent. Although you certainly kick tires. The market has to adjust post pandemic, and you might find a diamond in the rough. I doubt it though.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby Pensfan4life8771 on Tue Aug 18, 2020 8:40 am

FLPensFan wrote:
Ohio_Pens_fan wrote:
Pensfan4life8771 wrote:He said possibly no RFA's resigned...that includes Jarry :shock:

We are keeping Jarry right :?:

I saw that too. I wrote it off as a 'misspoke' by GMJR, otherwise it makes no logical sense at all.

We know both of their goalies are RFAs. While nothing confirmed, there were heavy rumors all season that Murray and his reps are asking for upwards of 8M AAV. That's just not going to happen in Pittsburgh. Because of cap issues, because of Murray's play the last 3 years, and because of the teams rumored disappointment in some of his habits (ie playing too deep). The writing was on the wall when Rutherford refused to negotiate with Murray during the season.

There should be some concern with Jarry in terms of salary. Merzlikins in CBJ got 4M AAV. Jarry's numbers are pretty similar to Merzlikins, and Jarry was an All-Star. He only got 1 post-season start, but he played extremely well. But, I think 4-4.5M is the high end for Jarry, and that is a liveable number.



This sounds about right for Jarry at $4M/yr for 3-4 years. That would put us right around 5.25M for both him and DeSmith...thats a good amount to spend on goalie tandem.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby E-Ramone on Tue Aug 18, 2020 9:26 am

longtimefan wrote:
FLPensFan wrote:
longtimefan wrote:
ville5 wrote:
FLPensFan wrote:Reports starting to surface that Penguins are going to sign LW Luke Stevens. 6'4" 220. He was a 5th round pick of Carolina, and, is the son of Kevin Stevens. Not sure if this means there is another in the works. Rutherford told Molinari they were going to sign someone, but it wasn't one of the recent college UFAs whose draft rights expired. He also said there was one of those recent college UFAs drafted by other teams that they did want, but he wanted to go another way. Maybe this was Stevens. Maybe he wanted to go Boston?

I dunno. Will be interesting to see if this is there only college UFA signing when it becomes official.

I've read some guess it could be Maniscalco..
RD plays with Austin. :shrug:


It appears Stevens decided to go with the team employing his dad.
https://www.dkpittsburghsports.com/2020 ... -sign-tlh/

He doesn't sound NHL ready, and I'd project more as a project. I like the name Maniscalo. He fits the profile of someone who often goes back to school for his junior year. He was 22 in February, and has hit a pretty decent stride.
https://www.houseofsparky.com/2019/11/2 ... defenseman

He's a RHD who fits the Pens profile of being able to move the puck. He went undrafted in 2019, but has had two nice college seasons, and had 32 points in 36 games this season. He's got nice size, larger than he was listed for the draft. So possibly a growth spurt. He's listed at 6'2", 205 lb. If the Pens believe he's pro ready, he may be worth a flyer. He's at the same stage of his college career as Marino was. He's also a right shot. It depends on what the scouts think, but if they like him, he adds to their depth at the weakest position in the system.

Marino's journey was paved by Stevens and Young. Connections help. If they like Maniscalo, they have the capacity of putting on quite a recruiting blitz. He plays with Mario's kid, and is an alum of the famous St Mary's-Shuttuck high school program Sid came through, not to mention Blueger and JJ. He's from Montgomery County, not far from Philly. ASU was relieved when he announced he'd be staying, as he had NHL offers. He may not be the guy, but he fits to a T of what they're describing, as well as slotting into a position of need.

Based off what Molinari said earlier from Rutherford, I believe Stevens is the player they "had their eye on for a few year" and wanted to sign, but "had his mind set on another team." Obviously, the Penguins would know all about the kid being Artie's son.

Rutherford also said the person they were going to sign (not a draftee of another team) had decided to skip their senior year because of the uncertainty of college hockey for next season. Stevens played all 4 seasons at Yale, so, it wasn't him.

I would expect one more college UFA to be signed.


Maniscalco fits the profile although he's only going into his junior season. He turned down several offers to sign and announced his intentions to return to ASU. I found this profile on him from March.

https://lastwordonhockey.com/2020/03/16 ... ts-part-3/

Josh Maniscalco, RHD, Arizona State, 6’2″ 205 lbs, Sophomore
21-year-old Maniscalco has been an important part of the Sun Devils as they have transitioned into Division 1 hockey. He put up 11 goals and 32 points in 36 games this past season. Maniscalco is a big defender who is willing to play a very physical game in the defensive end of the ice. He can throw a big hit but is disciplined enough not to get himself out of position and battles hard on the boards and in front of the net. He is also good in the offensive zone, with a huge point shot that other teams must make plans to defend on the power play. He is a very good skater for his size and this helps him to play a 200-foot game.

Man, it'd be nice to finally have a D-man with a point shot that's above average. When was the last time we had someone like that? Gonch? Imagine how much that would help the PP! Not saying this particular guy would be on the PP, but it'd be sweet to have that as a weapon.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby 100565 on Tue Aug 18, 2020 12:24 pm

If it is Maniscalo and if the person scouting Maniscalo is the same person that scouted Marino, then go for it.

Also, I think it would be good idea to get Geno someone to mentor. Does not need to be a linemate. Geno is appreciative of Gonchar; I think he would respond well to paying it back. Win-win.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby Jim on Tue Aug 18, 2020 1:23 pm

100565 wrote:If it is Maniscalo and if the person scouting Maniscalo is the same person that scouted Marino, then go for it.

Also, I think it would be good idea to get Geno someone to mentor. Does not need to be a linemate. Geno is appreciative of Gonchar; I think he would respond well to paying it back. Win-win.


Malkin's skill is his upside, and you cant teach that. Nothing else about Malkin is anything that I would want passed along.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby Odd Man Rush on Sat Aug 22, 2020 12:14 am

The Penguins need more offense from their defense. That is very obviously one of their primary issues.

Dumoulin is a nice player and so is Petterson, but they’re never going to give you anything offensively. Marino looks like he has a chance to be a very good player but right now, he’s a little bit overrated by the Penguins fan base.

John Marino still has a lot to prove. Don’t get me wrong, I’m optimistic about his future. However, there’s still plenty of room for him to grow before I’m ready to anoint him as our D1.

There’s no way in hell I’m trading Letang unless i get bowled over with an offer. Honestly, I think that’s completely crazy.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby thehockeyguru on Sat Aug 22, 2020 8:51 am

Odd Man Rush wrote:The Penguins need more offense from their defense. That is very obviously one of their primary issues.

Dumoulin is a nice player and so is Petterson, but they’re never going to give you anything offensively. Marino looks like he has a chance to be a very good player but right now, he’s a little bit overrated by the Penguins fan base.

John Marino still has a lot to prove. Don’t get me wrong, I’m optimistic about his future. However, there’s still plenty of room for him to grow before I’m ready to anoint him as our D1.

There’s no way in hell I’m trading Letang unless i get bowled over with an offer. Honestly, I think that’s completely crazy.


You're living in the past man.

What has Letang done in his last 8 playoff games over the past 2 seasons?

0 Goals 1 Assist and -5

WHY is that a guy you wouldn't trade when the problem is D not scoring? Letang is the #1 culprit.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby longtimefan on Sat Aug 22, 2020 9:14 am

FLPensFan wrote:I never really listened to Madden when I was in Pittsburgh. I knew of him. I think he was still more in wrestling announcing at the time. I think a lot of his schtick comes that gig. But he knows his hockey. He was supposed a pretty good dek hockey player back in his days, which is why he is still involved in dek hockey tournaments and traveling teams. I still remember the bet he had with Lemieux that he couldn't score off the faceoff, and when Lemieux did it at home, he pointed up to the pressbox towards Madden. I think Madden bet something like $6600 towards the Lemieux foundation that he couldn't do it.

I don't listen to Madden much when it comes to any other sport but hockey. Down in Florida, I'll put him on sometimes on my drive home from work whenever NHL Radio guys are talking useless stuff. Most people I have heard say that when you get past the persona, he's a pretty nice guy. It also seems like when his mother died, his work and his on-air persona got more intense. Maybe his mother kept him a little grounded.

I'm not a die-hard Madden follower, and really, I'm not a die-hard any media follower. I am not in the know of anything. I have no insiders. I don't think I even have any outsiders. LOL I just like to relay what the media is saying. Maybe some day I'll start a scorecard and see who tells the most truth. If there was one be all, end all source that I would trust right now when it comes to hockey.....it's Dave Molinari. I've never known Dave to dip his toes into half truths, rumors, and conjectures. I guess that's why he is in the Hall of Fame. I remember my parents getting the PG when I was a kid, and, not caring about anything else, picking it up and reading the hockey stuff in the sports section, and still remember seeing Molinari's picture next to some of the articles. He's been at this longer than anyone else that I know of.


He was a teenager who visited my sister's section. I was a year older. He started off writing for small papers, and always had a love for hockey. Which made him unique. He did the pregame and between period shows for a bit IIRC. When the Pens first got good, it wasn't easy to find someone who actually knew hockey. The guys with the sports shows always had a strong suit, and MM was the first to come along whose strong suit was hockey. The wrestling put him on a national stage, but he had developed a niche on ESPN radio locally. He really hasn't changed since he first hit the air. Except for becoming bolder as his popularity grows. The schtick was popular, and also important. He became popular enough to get a national show periodically on ESPN Sunday AM. For whatever reason, he played it straight. Frankly, it became just another show. The guy makes upwards of $200K the last I heard, so I can't blame him. We all have friends like him though. When he talks sports, he gets loud and passionate. If it was one on one, it would be shouting back and forth. And when it was over, it's like it never happened, and the two of you wonder why everyone is so worked up. He got fired from ESPN for making a bad joke about the JFK assassination. On a station owned by Disney whose headquarters was in the heart of Kennedy country. The X picked him up, and he's not considered sports talk. He's entertainment. That's sometimes pointed out by those who don't pull in his ratings.

I was at the game where Mario scored off the face off and immediately turned and pointed at Madden. However, MM did in fact make good on his bet. I would highly dispute he was ever a dek hockey player. As I said, I knew him as a teen. There's not an athletic bone in that body. lol Plus, we didn't have dek hockey when Mark and I were younger. What he did do was sponsor and coach a championship caliber dek hockey team from Pittsburgh. I know they traveled to Europe to play for some championship. What MM did was pay for everything, treating the kids like gold. Which shows a different side of the guy.

In terms of Molinari, he's an old time hockey scribe. As you said, he's in the HOF for a reason. He was a huge get for DK, and helped really bring credibility back to his site after a tough go of it. He doesn't deal in nonsense, which makes him a trusted source. Something that seems difficult to do during the age of clickbait.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby pens_CT on Sat Aug 22, 2020 9:38 am

FWIW, Molinari in his Q&A session yesterday mentioned that he received a note from a long time acquaintance in Arizona who has seen Maniscalco play and stated "he can move the puck and is pretty smart" and also called it a "nice signing". This person supposedly has been involved in the game for multiple decades so he should have some ability to identify talent.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby FLPensFan on Sun Aug 23, 2020 7:13 pm

I think another big issue the Penguins will have is....what if Poulin and POJ aren't ready. We all know GMJR supposedly wants to get younger. POJ and Poulin are a big part of that youth movement, and if they aren't ready, things get even more difficult for Rutherford and the Penguins.
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Re: An updated look ahead to the Penguins 20-21 season

Postby longtimefan on Mon Aug 24, 2020 11:19 am

FLPensFan wrote:I think another big issue the Penguins will have is....what if Poulin and POJ aren't ready. We all know GMJR supposedly wants to get younger. POJ and Poulin are a big part of that youth movement, and if they aren't ready, things get even more difficult for Rutherford and the Penguins.


Such is life in the hot seat of a NHL GM. They have to make a choice and roll with it. That's true with any team, and really any season. You have to project. We don't really know what they project. Before the playoffs, my thoughts was Poulin had to force his way onto the team, and POJ would be an in season call up, with JJ likely manning the 3LD until he was deemed ready. Much has happened to change some of their views, but it depends on what they think about the readiness of Poulin and POJ. Or anybody else who has an outside shot at a job.

If they deem them ready, you plan accordingly. If you don't think they're ready, you go in another direction. You have to decide which route to take. We're the ones penciling them into the lineup. We'll have to wait until camp to see it play out, but any moves may give you a hint.

The game has changed since 16 of 21 teams made the playoffs. The cap has created parity, but it's also made making trades more complicated. I understand that you can't afford to fall behind if you want a playoff spot. So it makes strategies of the past a bit more difficult.

In he past, I'd advocate finding a way to eliminate the contracts of Hornqvist, Bjugstad, and JJ. I realize you may have to take a contract or two back along the way, but, ideally, not. I'm not overly concerned with the return. Picks or prospects would be ideal. You may have to pay a bit to move JJ, but that's part of the game with the cap. My other assumption is that they bring back all of their RFA's except Murray. I trade him to Calgary with Sam Bennett part of the return. The roster you'd have would look like this.

Guentzel $6.0M Crosby $8.7M Simon $1.5M
Zucker $5.5M Malkin $9.5M Rust $3.5M
McCann $3.0M Bennett $3.5M Tanev $3.5M
Rodrigues $2.0M Blueger $750K Lafferty $750K
ZAR $1.0M Poulin $925K

Dumoulin $4.1M Letang $7.25M
Pettersson $4.025175 Marino $925K
Riikola $1.25M Ruhwedel $700K
Trotman $700K

Jarry $4M
DeSmith $1.25M

That cap hit comes to $74.325175

That looks similar to what the Athletic has been preaching. I'm figuring some of the RFA's a little high I thought. I'm not suggesting Poulin be a healthy scratch. This is more to illustrate the roster. A very cap friendly roster. As the Athletic suggests, you see what you have. If you convince the higher ups you've got a contender, you fill in accordingly.

The two obvious holes are 1RW and the bottom pair on defense. But this is what Sully is given. Likely not, but can Poulin play with Sid and Jake? They mentioned McCann had 25 goal potential. Which suggests a top 6 role to me. Do Guentzel or Zucker move over to the right side? Perhaps Poulin or Simon end up at 3LW? Although I do like the thoughts of McCann-Bennett-Tanev. You make Sully find out. His other options are the guys at WBS. Which includes Angello starting the season there. Blueger could even move up to 3LW, with Rodrigues being the 4C. Find out what you have in house. As the season moves along, and you show promise, you can look to upgrade where needed. In season deals can be difficult. But having $7M in cap space makes it easier.

You're going to have to really rely on your top 4 on defense. Riikola may come back with new assistants if he feels he'll get a fair shot. A little extra raise can smooth things over. But a figure he's likely worth. He gives them a chance to start POJ in WBS if needed. They claimed Ruhwedel was perhaps their best defenseman for a stretch, but his treatment in the playoffs suggest something different. Trotman is signed for another season, and I have a hunch Manscalco could be up sooner rather than later. Although I don't know if it's this season. It will allow them time to evaluate how far along he is. Regardless, it's tough to see them bringing in a RHD with a contract of any note. If they don't plan to trade Letang, they can't afford to pay a 3rd RHD behind Letang and Marino after next season. It's a position they can again try to fill during the season. The type of player they acquire may tell you a lot about how they view Maniscalco's progress. In terms of the term remaining.

The above is not a championship roster. Some issues will need addressed. But you've got to find out what you have. One thing they've had is NHL depth. Take advantage of that. The curse of it is it keeps you from giving chances to some younger guys. By only adding Bennett from outside, it allows you to see exactly what you have. The danger is the race for playoff spots has become hotly contested. Building during the season can win you a cup. There's countless examples. But, you have to make the playoffs to win that cup. Personally, it's a risk I think is worth taking. It gives you maximum flexibility, and this team had no issues performing when they were undermanned. The problems started as they became healthy. I think they need to go mostly in house to start the season.
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