Key Stat: In 12 NHL games in 2010-11, enforcer Steve MacIntyre dropped the gloves for exactly 0 fights, down from seven fights in 2009-10, where he posted a 4-1-2 record according to hockeyfights.com, the only loss coming to the late Derek Boogaard.
Interesting Note: Of the nine different guys that MacIntyre has fought in the NHL since 2009-10, only three (George Parros , Brad Staubitz, Brian McGratton) remain in the league. The NHL enforcer is a dying breed and the number of guys in Big Mac’s weight class just aren’t around too much anymore.
Interesting Note II: During MacIntyre’s 12 NHL appearances, six of those games saw him record 2:03 TOI or less.
The Good: Well, he did enough to earn a contract for the next two seasons when the Penguins re-signed him on this July 1. But as a player, there’s not too much to talk about. MacIntyre’s one of the last in a dying breed, an NHL player that really isn’t all the skilled at hockey, just a guy to protect his teammate’s backs. But, given how the Penguins have had heated blow-ups with teams like Philadelphia and the New York Islanders in the past two years, there’s nothing wrong with keeping some muscle in the minor leagues, just in case you need to tap into it. Apparently that’s worth one of the organization’s 50 contracts to Ray Shero for the next two seasons.
The Bad: Seems redundant to pile on MacIntyre, who’s an honest player and person, just makes a living with his fists and doing what he does. It’s not his fault that only a handful of guys are big/strong/tough/smart/dumb enough to fight him and not his bad that he doesn’t really belong in the NHL on talent alone.
Moment to Remember: Not one to say this year, really. I guess you could look at the final game of the season, a rematch against Philadelphia when they were butthurt and fired up about Joe Vitale’s clean and thundering open-ice hit on Daniel Briere from the game before, leading to coaches yelling at each other on the bench. Everyone thought the rematch would be nasty, so the Pens called up MacIntyre from the minors and he actually played a season high 13 shifts and 8:37. But no fight to speak of.
Moment to Forget: Not really one to say, either. In the 38:07 of total time that Big Mac played over the whole season in the NHL, he wasn’t out for a goal for, or a goal against. He took 3 minor penalties, so that’s never a good thing.
Discussion: Even with the contract extension, do you see MacIntyre ever donning a Pittsburgh jersey for a regular season game? Do you agree with the team’s decision to keep him around for two more years, even as an insurance policy stashed away in the minor leagues, just in case something happens to where he’d be needed for a rematch type game?