Game 7 - Pirates @ Baby Penguins

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Postby Henry Hank on Wed May 28, 2008 3:47 pm

Well gee, a young offensively talented defenseman that makes defensive mistakes and wanders too far off his defensive responsibilities at times. Like I said, it will be a process and he's not going to come up here and be an important player right away. Letang got criticized for similar lapses during his WBS stint, but he pulled it together, got called up and played mostly solid D this season. I expect Goligoski to follow a similar path. They have the luxury to let him grow into his role with Gonchar, Whitney, and Letang ahead of him. By the time Gonchar's contract is up, I'd suspect Goligoski will be prepared to step into a more prominent role.
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Postby narcolept on Wed May 28, 2008 5:24 pm

Henry Hank wrote: They have the luxury to let him grow into his role with Gonchar, Whitney, and Letang ahead of him. By the time Gonchar's contract is up, I'd suspect Goligoski will be prepared to step into a more prominent role.


Spot on assessment. All I've been saying is that he's at least a year away, from what I've seen as a WBS Pens season ticket holder. I've read some posts which seem to have him in the mix of the top 6 next year, and after watching the kid all year, while he does show promise, I just don't see him getting substantial minutes in Pittsburgh next year without a decimation of the defense both through free agency and another injury bug next year.

I'd love to be wrong, of course..
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Postby Henry Hank on Wed May 28, 2008 5:45 pm

I agree a lot of people seem to be treating him as if he'll already be a finished product next year, suggesting they can trade Whitney and just plug him in. It's not going to work that way. My expectation is that Whitney and Letang will continue to grow at the NHL level, with Goligoski joining them at some point along the way, while Gonchar is still here for two more seasons. He'll leave at the end of his deal and the younger guys, who at that point will be fairly seasoned, can step into roles as legitimately dependable defensemen.
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