PensBurgh wrapup: Mark Eaton

I felt extremely uncomfortable as the focal point, in the spotlight. I really like the behind the scenes role, because all my freedom is there." ~ Brian Eno

Season Stats:  79 gp, 3g, 13a, 16p, +5, 26 PIMs, 4.6 GVT
Playoff Stats:  13 gp, 0g, 3a, 3p, -4, 4 PIMs

Adjusted +/- QCOMP QTEAM TOI/60 G/60 P/60 PDO OPCT PTake/60 PDraw/60 Corsi%
ES Advanced Stats -0.28 -0.004 -0.038 15.29 0.15 0.65 994 53.6 0.5 0.2 51%

Month-by-month PensBurgh grades:
October:  B-
November: B+
December: B-
January: C
February: C
March: C-
Playoffs: C

Contract Status:  Unrestricted free agent this summer; previous cap hit of $2M.

Interesting Stat:  Mark Eaton led all Penguin defensemen with 4.3 DGVT.

The Good:  Mark Eaton managed to be what people expected him to be this year:  a stay-at-home defenseman who did his job and was the sort of player people only noticed when he made a mistake.  It should be said that people frequently forgot he was even on the roster; for a player of his ilk, that's actually a mark in his favor.

The Not-so-good:  Well, his offensive ability was nonexistent, but that was expected.  While his adjusted +/- on the PK was third among Penguin defensemen, that +0.32 rating is not a particularly good one.

Final Verdict:  Like I said above, Eaton is the type of player who will go completely unnoticed if he does his job well.  Considering that his playoff performance wasn't up to the level of his regular season performance, those who put more weight on what a player does in the postseason will likely cause Eaton's value to drop.

Question and Discussion:  Given that 2010-2011 will be his age-33 season, which is generally past any NHLer's prime (Eaton's was in 2003-2004 with Nashville), what do we do with him?  Re-sign him or let him walk?  Is it Lovejoy's turn in those shoes?

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