I tend to agree with the original poster. I am not overly impressed with the some of the decisions the Pens and Shero have made since the playoffs ended. One of the biggest things where I see Shero giving in is age/term and NMC. Shero had always been against giving mid-30 players 3 or more years, yet we just gave 2 players FOUR years. Shero has usually been against giving NMC.....HOGWASH I say. The Pens now lead the league with TWELVE roster players with some form of NMC. TWELVE!!!! Half the roster.
-Letang is part of the core, and deserved a NMC. Don't really have a problem with the salary or term. A bit more than I wanted to see, but a lot less than he could have gotten as a UFA.
-Dupuis, again, love the signing, but not the contract. Dupuis should have gotten term or NMC, not both. Really shouldn't have gotten a NMC offered at 34.
-Kunitz gets an extension, and a no-movement clause.
-To me, the top 2 lines were not an issue at all going into UFA period once Dupuis signed. Frankly, I thought the bottom 6 needed a major upgrade before adding defense. With Cooke and Adams UFA, and TK sent to San Jose, it was the perfect opportunity to rebuild those lines.
-I've heard Tanner Glass already being thrown around as a replacement for Cooke. Seems like a mistake to me, especially after the disappointing season he had last year. He is also without a doubt a definite downgrade in offensive skill over Matt Cooke. I would rather see Glass stay on the 4th line, and have the Pens bring in someone like a Ryan Jones, Eric Nystrom (already signed w/NSH), or have them work with Dustin Jeffrey more on PK and defense. Jeffrey has never really gotten a good shot to prove himself. In 90 games, he's got 27 points. Not earth shattering, but 3 times more than what Tangradi has in just about as many games.
-I don't think the Adams signing is horrible (he didn't get an NMC, so that is a plus), but I think the Pens could have upgraded the position more. Adams is an excellent PK, no doubt, but you'd like to have a 4th line center who can be a stud on faceoffs too...and Adams isn't. Again, there were several options that looked better than Adams for around the same price or less.
-I like bringing in Scuderi, but not for the term, not with a NMC, and really not for the amount. Yeah, he took less than he earned last contract, and less than he would have gotten elsewhere. Why do we continue to draft defensemen if we can't develop them to the point of being NHL ready?
-Bennett appears to be safe, probably Despres too....but we have yet another year of Dumoulin, Maata, Harrington, and co not making the team. Bortuzzo would seem to be getting another year of riding the bench. We already saw Strait, Lovejoy, and Morrow get shipped out....Strait and Lovejoy both rather quickly getting signed to contract extensions. Of all these "stud" defensemen we have drafted or acquired, not one has stepped in early. They do realize that if they actually worked with them, worked them into the lineup, they could get some cap relief that way, right? I'd like to see Dustin Jeffrey get more of a chance, and maybe he will. At the same time, the forward cupboard in WBS continues to be rather bare, so I hope all of our players are ironmen this season.
If you look at the roster, HALF of the Penguins roster has some form of a no-movement clause:
-Forwards: Crosby, Malkin, Dupuis, Neal, Kunitz
-Defense: Orpik, Martin, Letang, Scuderi
-Goalie: Fleury, Vokoun
Granted, they are not all out no trade clauses, but still when a player can name teams, they aren't going to be naming the Florida, Winnipeg, Colorado types. It severely limits their ability to get the return they may want. Shero has not been a fan the no-trade/no-movement clause, but, guess what.....the Penguins have more players with NTC/NMC than ANYONE ELSE in the league. Better hope the Pens stubborness with losing the way they did was right, because we are going to have the current team for awhile or be moving them out for less than market value.