Sometimes a 5-2 loss can really get the best of you. And by that I mean, you can't stop thinking of solutions. In a post-game report Coach Therrien said he wasn't worried about the loss or the team's losing record on the road, although players like Brooks Orpik seem to be more concerned about shaping up before the playoffs.
So when I say solutions I mean, hypothetical situations. And by hypothetical I mean - hell, let's just fill a day in between games.
Here is the situation: Ryan Whitney. Killer93 proposed the idea last night in the game's open thread and I'd just like to reiterate it here and see what others may be thinking.
Talks of Hossa seem so overdone and moot at this point, but I'm merely bringing it up because, as you all may very well know, he's set to be a free agent come July 1.
I'd like to think the Pens will consider his level of play before signing him for what I like to call the 'name' factor, but if this option was presented, how would you feel?
Would you trade/release Ryan Whitney for cap space to keep Hossa?
Consider everything. And if you don't know what everything may consist of, I've listed a few things for your consideration.
Whit was a minus-3 last night, and one may even say the single reason for at least two of the Rangers goals. He did rack up an assist though, which merely puts him at 24 on the season. With only nine games remaining it's highly unlikely Whitney's 36 points will come anywhere near last year's career-high 56. This is not only disappointing on a production sense, but from a financial viewpoint this guy was upped to five mil in the offseason to more or less become a franchise defenseman.
He came to the team at the deadline and was out for 10 days before you could blink an eye. Although not career-altering, Hossa does have a slight history of knee injuries that have left him sidelined for significant periods of time. On the plus side, one look at him bolting down the ice and you wouldn't know it. On a downside, one tap on his knee could put him down for a while.
Again I ask: would you consider dropping Whitney to clear space in hopes of signing Hossa to a Whitney-like contract? Keep in mind the Pens still need to negotiate with (deep breath) Fleury, Orpik, Malone, Conklin, Ruutu, Laraque, Roberts, Dupui, Eaton and perhaps even Malkin in the offseason. It's almost painful to say, but unless the front office can work some miracles the Pens can expect to see at least one of these guys hittin the road. I'd venture to say that Roberts will retire and the Pens may have given up hope on Mark Eaton with his recurring injuries. Unless, of course, he can be had for a cheap price.
As Killer93 mentioned yesterday, the Penguins have a formidable depth in the defensive core with players like Goglioski and Lannon. Evidence of Kris Letang's success this season proves that the WBS system can breed blueliners. Scuderi, Letang, Gonchar, Sydor and Gill will be sticking around, so one or two more guys on D is about the extent of it.
Have at it.