Home > Uncategorized > Pittsburgh Penguins ’10-’11 Roster (Take One)

Pittsburgh Penguins ’10-’11 Roster (Take One)

I decided to try and crunch the numbers and find a somewhat suitable team to field for the ’10-’11 season.  Sure it’s a bit early, but will be hoisted and July 1st will roll around before we know it.  At any rate here is my first submission for what could be a possible cap-friendly Penguins roster for next year.  Even with it being a tight squeeze salary-wise there are still a few different directions you can go in, so I’ll explain some notable parts of the roster below it.  Also, scroll down to my free agent list for a reference on the new faces.

Here we go…..

Kunitz-Crosby-Kariya ($3 million)

Tangradi-Malkin-Bertuzzi ($1.5 million)

Dupuis-Staal-Kennedy

Rupp-Adams-Talbot

Godard

Orpik-Letang

Goligoski-Jurcina ($1.8 million)

Lovejoy-Bouillon ($850k)

Brett Lebda ($625k)

$1.45 million in cap space (I won’t bore you with the details but I verified this twice)

Now keep in mind under any scenario that whatever cap room is left when the opening night roster is set basically quadruples by the time the trade deadline rolls around.  I have no idea how that makes any sense but it does (it’s how the Penguins managed to obtain Ponikarovsky just by trading Skoula and having about $500k in cap space, probably less).  With that in mind there is enough cap space left with this roster where you can bump up a free agent’s salary if you feel I’m being too generous (Kariya at $3.5 mil or Jurcina at $2.2 mil for examples).  Best case scenario if you feel my numbers are right on the money the Penguins have essentially almost $6 million to spend at the trade deadline, more if they trade a roster player.  Worst case they still have more than they did last year unless I’m just totally off the mark on every guy, which I don’t believe to be the case.

-Of all the points in this section this is the most important:  I have no problem with Pascal Dupuis and he certainly earned his money this year.  That being said if they dealt him for a draft pick they would have a lot more room to move in free agency.  Trading him would make a roster like the above fairly easy to put together money-wise.  Also, it enables an outside shot at a big free agent like Anton Volchenkov should the Penguins want to give it a go.  Trading away Dupuis and bringing in Letestu full time doesn’t hurt the bottom two lines in any way (Rupp and Talbot are still there) and while saving $850k might not seem like much, it could easily be the difference between getting someone you want or having him go elsewhere.

-I think $3 million for Kariya is just about right because he’ll be 36 in October and with 18 goals last year and a busted year before that due to injury I think he’s ripe for the picking.  I would go as high as $3.25 million per year as a possibility but any more than that is a big risk for a team.  The only issue is it might be his last contract so Shero would possibly have to break his “no 3 year deals for anyone over 30” rule.  I don’t think playing with Crosby will turn the clock back ten years for Kariya but he thinks on the same level as other creative players and if that theory holds true we might actually see some nice passes in succession for once.

-To me Tangradi has to play if no one is to be traded, which I expect to be the case.  In a perfect world I would play him 20-40 games this coming year and give him full duties the year after but I’m just not sure the Penguins can afford to.  He also brings strength and muscle to the top six forwards with is also desired.  Unless the organization feels he really won’t be able to handle it I would pull the trigger.  The future is now and in a worst case scenario bump him to the 4th line or scratch him and Talbot can fill in.  It won’t be any worse than it was last year for certain and who knows?  With the centers this team has 19 or 20 goals isn’t an impossibility.

-If you don’t like Bertuzzi as the other winger acquisition I made then feel free to replace him with whomever.  There will be at least a half dozen forwards with the same risk/reward proposition that comes with signing this type of guy.  I chose him simply because he adds experience, muscle, and a slight chance at a really nice year.  25 goals and 55 points is reachable but that’s probably it.

-In my opinion Jurcina could be a really great asset.  He’s huge, mobile for his size, right-handed and he’s only 26.  The Penguins torched him in the playoffs last year, but it wasn’t really his fault.  The Caps didn’t have anyone else to match up with Crosby and Malkin.  He won’t have to face those guys here and after having a great Olympics he could be a diamond on the rough who is in the midst of taking a step in his career.  He will certainly garner no more than around $2 million in free agency.  The risk is he could simply be Hal Gill without any of the smarts, but he could also just be coming into his own.

-The defense as a whole isn’t as strong as I’d like it to be but again I’m banking on Jurcina being a middle of the road signing that really hits the mark for the Penguins.  Francis Bouillon is your requisite aging defenseman who doesn’t offer a lot in any category but he’s been around and will be a stabilizing factor for Lovejoy.  If doesn’t have it any more then Brett Lebda can hold the fort.  He’s learned from some all-time great defensemen in Detroit and even though he’s just a utility player he skates well.  In general if the defense makes you uncomfortable then replace Kariya with a Bertuzzi-type player salary-wise and put that extra cash into the defense…….or like I said trade Dupuis.

-Lastly, keep in mind these are pain in the ass to do no matter how fun it is.  Everyone is going to have their criticisms of any roster someone produces, but even if you go just off of this model you’ll see that while some nice players might have to be let go (Cooke, Eaton) you can still trot out a very good team with shades of the ’09 Cup winning Penguins.

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Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Tom
    May 22, 2010 at 4:59 am

    Doesn’t look like a Cup winning lineup to me.

    I don’t see Tangradi and Bertuzzi with Malkin. Try somebody else.

    I think Engelland gets the 7th spot to save money, but I don’t have a problem with Lebda.

    • May 23, 2010 at 6:58 pm

      Fair enough. When it comes to second line wingers I think everyone’s want list is going to be different. I’m probably not going to like whoever plays with Malkin but this is what I pulled out of my ass for better or worse.

  2. Dan
    May 22, 2010 at 4:47 pm

    Well we already kind of had a convo about this so much else to say. I do like how you have them set up and your way is much better than what will actually happen. Just some random predictions but I have a feeling Leopold and Eaton will stay. Possibly Poni too. I think they will get 1 top 6 winger and be willing to have Dupuis in the top 6 until the deadline. Not saying I like just my prediction on what they will actually do.

    Kunitz-Croz-UFA
    Tangradi-Malkin-Poni or Dupuis
    Dupuis or Talbot- Staal- Kennedy
    Rupp-Letestu or Talbot- Adams
    Godard

    Orpik-Letang
    Physical UFA-Golisgoski
    Eaton-Leopold

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