As we gear up for tonight's game against Montreal at the Bell Centre, I think it's time we take a closer look at some of the more potent players on this Penguins team. Sure, you have Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Sergei Gonchar and Marc-Andre Fleury. You also have Max Talbot and Chris Kunitz. But today, before the puck drops in what may ultimately send the Penguins off to the Eastern Conference Finals for the third year in a row, I feel it's only right to show a little appreciation for one Craig Adams.
People were riding Craig Adams earlier in the year about how he's taking up space, not contributing on the offensive side of things and just goes out and skates circles. That's ridiculous. I defended him then and I'll defend him now. Today, I felt obligated to express why, in fact, Craig Adams is the man.
You know why Craig Adams is the man?
Craig Adams is the man because we never have to worry about what he's doing. He knows his job is the same game in and game out. Go out there, stop penalties, eat up the clock and make sure they know you're there. Get physical, get angry and get a few dump ins. Rinse and repeat.
Craig Adams is the man because he is good value. The Pens are paying $550,000 a year for him to be a consistent battering ram.
Craig Adams is the man because he doubled his goal production from regular season to postseason. How many players can say that? Of course when you look at his regular season numbers (um, zero) and his postseason numbers (two!) you might get a laugh, but he consistently remains the man because scoring goals isn't in his job description. He does it just to remind you he can.
Craig Adams is the man because as I drove into work this morning I was thinking about tonight's game (who isn't?). My mind was filled with little nuggets along the lines of "I hope Geno can get one" and "Maybe this will be Sid's game." You don't have to think those things about Craig Adams, because you know what you're getting from him every time. Anything more is an added bonus.
Craig Adams is the man because he has a degree from Harvard and didn't have to join the rowing team.
Craig Adams is the man because he was born in some country I'm not entirely sure how to pronounce (State of Brunei Darussalam). But it's close to Borneo and I can say that with no prob. It's also close-ish to Singapore. Maybe our buddy Alighieri can help out.
Craig Adams is the man because during the regular season, when injuries plagued the Pens and guys like Rupp, Godard and Talbot were unable to drop the mitts to rally the team, Adams put his face and Ivy League brain on the line as a human punching bag. He may not have won many...or any...of the fights, but you gotta respect a guy like that. When Craig Adams has a shiner, you know he means business.
Finally, Craig Adams is the man because...well, because I frickin said so.
Preview + pick 'em up in an hour.