What do you think of the goaltending situation?]]>
First off, chances are that the complacent Pittsburgh hockey community will lose its team to another city that has yet to have a taste of the NHL. However, that is not for at least 2 years to come.
As far as talent goes, Here is what I think we can expect the roster to look like next year, assuming a top 3 pick, which has virtually been clinched; along with a short analysis of what each line brings. Parenthesies signify a possible replacement.
Straka(Abid)-Lemieux-Morozov(Zherdev/Eaves) (Straka *may* be gone) Well, with Mario, Abid and Morozov will both be scoring frequently and hopefully Morozov will have developed consistency, which he had at the start of the season. (through his first 12-15 games he was projected for 90+ points)
Sivek-Beech-Kraft(Morozov): This line is fast, all are strong on the puck, and both Sivek and Kraft can finish, while Beech is touted as a playmaker.
Surovy-Petersen(Endicott)-Meloche: this is a hard-nosed group of youngsters that pound games out in the corners and along the boards, and all have OK hands. Look for these guys to be scoring grinders similar to McCarty/Maltby/Holmstrom (although to a much lesser extent initially)
McKenna-Endicott(Petersen)-Armstrong: This line has size, decent speed, and some grit. Endicott and armstrong can contribute a little bit here and there as well.
Roszival-Melichar: this pairing has always displayed good chemistry, when they are both healthy, which has been a concern for Melicher. Roszival moves the puck well and can jump in on the rush as well, providing another dimension for this line.
Orpik-Tarnstrom: Orpik is a VERY punishing hitter, and both of these guys are good puck movers that should help the penguins’ transition game tremendously
Focht-Bouchard: Bouchard has blazing speed, and Focht is a former 11th overall pick. this should provide a defense that can aid the forecheck well, and punish opposing players in front of the net.
Heinz or Lintner may be able to fill in as a 7th D-man, but I wouldn’t count on it…]]>