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^ Not necessarily. He could very well sign for around $7m for 1 year with a contender, like Hossa did with Detroit. EDIT: I'm hearing that NJ is offering him 2 years, $6m per, which he could very well take.


If I were the Penguins I would have rather had Gonchar over Michalek. Who knows though. There is probably a reason why I'm not running an NHL franchise.


No way. Gonchar played only average to slightly above average this past season, it is very evident that he is rapidly declining. He is only going to have two (three MAX) years left in him at his current caliber of play. I doubt he'll even make that third year of his deal. Last year's formula for the Penguins' defensive unit is not a winning one...not even close. There were way too many gaps in the defensive aspect, especially after losing two key defenders in Scuderi and Gill, and the Penguins had a surplus of offensive defensemen (what, 4 of 6? that's way too many). Michalek is an up and coming, EXTREMELY underrated DEFENSIVE defenseman. He is one of the best shut down D-men in the game, at only 27. The only reason he isn't a bigger name is because he played in Phoenix. The Penguins still have plenty of offense in their defensive unit to make up for the lost points Gonchar contributed...they will be just fine.

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Martin & Michalek > Gonchar


I like Gonch but he's getting old and his production really started to decline this past year, I dont think resigning him was the right choice. Michalek brings the MUCH needed "defensive defenseman" aspect of the defense the Pens lacked last season (with the exception of Orpik), not only is he younger but he should take a lot of pressure off of Fleury and allow him to return to the much more reliable goalie he was in 08-09 (I personally think he only had an off-year because we got rid of half our cup-defense and put too much pressure on him). Martin doesn't entirely replace the spot Gonchar left but he fills the role of the offensive powerplay defenseman left by Gonch and should play a bit better defensively as well, especially since he comes from a division rival (who maybe we can beat this year now ). Overall, I think Shero made the right decisions...signing Michalek was one thing but signing both Michalek and Martin VASTLY improved our defense even with the loss of Gonchar, not too mention pretty much solves our biggest problem from last year.


On the topic of the "missing star winger"- I remember around the draft I kept hearing about a center prospect we drafted a few years back named Joe Vitale who was supposed to be showing some good promise in WBS this past year...I had this idea that maybe at some point we should bring him up to be the 4th line center, bump Talbot to 3rd line center, and try out Staal as a 1st line winger for Crosby...is that too radical/crazy a move to actually happen or do other Pens fans think it's a good idea?

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On the topic of the "missing star winger"- I remember around the draft I kept hearing about a center prospect we drafted a few years back named Joe Vitale who was supposed to be showing some good promise in WBS this past year...I had this idea that maybe at some point we should bring him up to be the 4th line center, bump Talbot to 3rd line center, and try out Staal as a 1st line winger for Crosby...is that too radical/crazy a move to actually happen or do other Pens fans think it's a good idea?


I'm not familiar with the prospect you're referring to. However 4th lines are typically checkers or energy type players. Teams don't normally bring up prospects and bury them on the 4th line. Better to only bring them up if they can play on one of the top lines, otherwise it's better to leave them in the minors or junior to build confidence.


Plus, bringing players up early would burn their entry level contract sooner, and would just get them closer to free agency by the time they start to really develop.

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I just see Kariya having a huge season even if Crosby is his center. Great guy and my favorite player as a kid, but he his numbers haven't been there in years. Frankly I never thought he was the same player after his concussion (I believe Gary Sutter made that hit). He is roughly 100 goals short of 500, I would love to see him get there and maybe having Crosby at center would be his best chance, but at 35 and with a history of injuries I don't see it happening.

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Bob Probert passed away after suffering "severe chest pains" on his boat in Lake St. Clair this afternoon.


Legendary NHL tough guy Bob Probert died Monday after collapsing while on a boat on Lake St. Clair near Windsor, Ont. He was 45.


Probert was boating with his children, father-in-law and mother-in-law. His father-in-law, Dan Parkinson, said in a short news conference Monday night at Windsor Regional Hospital that Probert developed "severe chest pain" around 2 p.m. before collapsing to his death. Emergency crews attempted to revive Probert on the shore, but to no avail.


The Windsor Star reported his death was confirmed by Ontario Provincial Police spokeswoman Shawn Coulter shortly after 5 p.m.


"This is a tragedy for the family and totally unexpected," Parkinson said.


AM 800 CKLW, a Windsor radio station, first reported that Probert had collapsed. Probert was rushed to a Windsor Regional Hospital, but attempts to revive him were unsuccessful.


Probert, who turned 45 last month, spent his 17-year career with the Detroit Red Wings and Chicago Blackhawks. He was known as one of the NHL's most feared enforcers and fighters, and he wracked up 3,300 penalty minutes in 935 NHL games. He also had 384 points.


Probert ranks fifth on the NHL's all-time list for most career penalty minutes behind Tiger Williams (3,966), Dale Hunter (3,565), Tie Domi (3,515) and Marty McSorly (3,381), though he played in fewer games than all of those fellow fighters/enforcers. Probert holds the Red Wings franchise records for career penalty minutes (2,090) and penalty minutes in a season (398).


A third-round pick of the Red Wings in 1983, Probert debuted with Detroit in 1985-86. He was voted to the Campbell Conference All-Star team in 1988, the only time he received such an honor.


Probert finished the 1987-88 seasons with career highs in points (62) and PIMs (398). He also led the Wings with 21 points in 16 playoff games, though Steve Yzerman did not play in the playoffs that season.


"It's very sad, very, very sad," Red Wings Vice President Jim Devellano said. "He was a pretty popular player in Detroit in the '80s, and certainly one tough guy with a lot of ability. But unfortunately we never got 100 percent out of him because of his off ice problems."


Probert was suspended indefinitely by the NHL in 1989 after he was arrested for trying to smuggle cocaine across the Canada-U.S. border. He was involved in a minor motorcycle accident in July 1994 and suffered minor injuries, but police determined his blood alcohol level was roughly triple the legal limit and he had traces of cocaine in his system.


Soon after the Red Wings announced they weren't going to re-sign Probert.


"This is the end," Devellano said at the time. "(In) my 12 years with the organization ... we've never spent more time on one player and his problems than we have on Probert."


Probert signed as an unrestricted free agent with the Chicago Blackhawks in July of 1994, but Probert did not play in the lockout-shortened 1994-95 season because he was suspended for violating the NHL's substance abuse policy.


He returned for the 1995-96 season and played through 2001-02. Probert officially announced his retirement on Nov. 16, 2002.


"Our thoughts and prayers are with the entire Probert family during this difficult time," Blackhawks President John McDonough said in a statement. "Bob will always be a member of the Blackhawks family and his memory will live on through our fans."



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VERY sad to hear of Probert's passing. This guy was the epitome of a hockey player. He was one bad mofo who was an enforcer, yet had underrated offensive skills as well. The league needs more Bob Proberts.



Well, more Bob Proberts,but without the off ice problems.

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  • 2 weeks later...

^That was confirmed. I'm no big hockey guy. My favorite team is the Blackhawks. By the way, I liked them when they were terrible. I was just watching the Monday Night Baseball game and they showed the news.


17 Years??? That's a long time.

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The NHL has REJECTED the Kovalchuk deal. I say good for them, it's about time the law was laid down and they stopped letting teams walk all over them and take advantage of loopholes. Although Lou (Devils' GM) might have an argument because the NHL let the Luongo, Pronger, Yashin, Hossa, etc. deals go through (albeit Hossa just barely squeaking by), but this Kovalchuk deal was REALLY extreme compared to those others.




Anyone who doesn't understand why, here are a couple good articles.





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  • 2 months later...

I love hockey, and I used to love the Av's, but I didn't know why. I currently have no favorite team, but I usually follow players in the NHL from my High School. That being said, it looks like the Pen's don't have a win yet. Hope they can pick it up really quickly!

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Great game by the Kings last night. Fun watching them spoil the Canucks 40th anniversary.


Loving the Kings retro jerseys!







Pens have so far been disappointing, 2 losses in a row in the new arena. At least the game vs the Habs was on hell of thriller.





Edited by Top Thrill Dragster
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^^ That was a frightening moment. Although the next day I heard that he was asking about the game in the hospital, so he's okay. The caps lost though, but considering what happened to him and the fact that we smoked NJ the next night, I'm willing to give the Thrashers that one.


Hopefully the caps will beat Ottowa tonight! GO CAPS!!


Also, did anyone hear about the new Rangers guy who scored a hat trick in his NHL debut?!

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