The fighter with a heart of gold is a potential free agent on July 1. Do the Penguins hold onto the heavyweight, or will a team in need of some aggressiveness sweep in and pick him up?
2007-08 regular season stats
Easily known as one of hardest hitting bodycheckers and fighters on the market, Georges Laraque has called Pittsburgh his home for the last two seasons. His minor offensive production always seems to be an incident of 'right place, right time', while his face rattling checks left guys like Steve Downie crying on the inside.
With both Laraque and Ruutu up for talks at the same time, do you try and work a package deal around these guys or do you have to see one go? After all, BGL wasn't much in the playoffs - especially the finals where he was a scratch for a majority of the series.
If the team moves forward with a Hossa, Malkin and Crosby line, the squad is going to need its enforcers. Ruutu can easily handle it, Laraque would thoroughly enjoy it and the entire team would have a firm grasp on security for at least another season.
Dunman had his share of Tales of the Tape featuring Big Georges throughout the course of the season. But out of everything the guy did this year my all-time favorite is still this little tidbit right here:
In context it was a mildly stupid play (perhaps even embellished by a pseudo-dive on Downie's part) because it led to a double-minor for the Flyers. But afterwards, you know - when the Penguins eliminated the Flyers from the Conference Finals, it just becomes a sheer display of beauty.
So - do you keep Big Georges around, or do you let him walk?