The next move by the Penguins looks likely to be the addition of a new 3C to facilitate Jordan Staal's move to Malkin's line while maintaining, to the extent possible, the team's philosophy of "Strength Down the Middle."
A couple prime candidates can be removed from Shero's shopping list:
1) Manny Malhotra -- signed a 3-year deal with Vancouver at $2.5M/year early on July 1), and
2) Eric Belanger -- won't be re-signed by Washington, but is reportedly seeking a multi-year deal at >$2.0M/year.
So who is on the list...The candidates and their SB Nation Scouting Reports:
1. Jeff Halpern (LAK)
Assets = Is a diligent worker. Plays a solid defensive game and excels on the penalty kill. Possesses solid leadership qualities and the ability to play both center and wing.
Flaws = Has struggled when called upon to serve a top-six forward role, since he's extremely streaky in the offensive zone and not a natural talent.
2. Ryan Johnson (VAN)
Assets = Has blinding speed and is a tenacious forechecker. Likes to get physical and play an energy role. Can play either center or left wing. Is a good face-off man.
Flaws = Lacks offensive flair and struggles to put points on the board. Is also somewhat injury-prone and lacking in physical toughness.
3. John Madden (CHI)
Assets = Outstanding penalty-killer and shutdown pivot. His versatility enables him to play any role on a hockey club. Has great speed, sound fundamentals, and an excellent work ethic.
Flaws = Doesn’t put up huge numbers which makes him a less-than-ideal top six pivot. Can go long stretches without a point.
4. Dominic Moore (MON)
Assets = Has excellent hockey sense and two-way instincts. Always gives maximum effort on the ice. Gets under opponents' skin. Skates very well and shoots the puck a lot.
Flaws = Is smallish in stature, which negates some of his checking ability. Lacks offensive consistency. Doesn't score enough goals for the chances he receives.
5. Rob Niedermeyer (NJD)
Assets = Has good size and excellent defensive instincts. Skates well and is versatile enough to play anywhere up front.
Flaws = Has underachieved on offense, mainly because of prolonged scoring droughts and a lack of offensive instincts.
Who would you like to see the Penguins for the 3C role?
1. Jeff Halpern (LAK) (8 votes)
2. Ryan Johnson (VAN) (8 votes)
3. John Madden (CHI) (31 votes)
4. Dominic Moore (MON) (7 votes)
5. Rob Niedermeyer (NJD) (16 votes)
70 total votes