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Do Crosby and Malkin even need scoring help?

Jul 25, 2012, 11:52 AM EDT

Sidney Crosby, Evegeni Malkin AP

We don’t have to tell you that, when healthy, Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin are two of the most dominating scorers in the NHL. Both players have won MVP awards (Malkin this year, Crosby in 2007), both have won the Art Ross Trophy as the league’s leading scorer (Malkin’s done it twice), and Malkin won the Conn Smythe Trophy in 2009.

We always hear about how the Penguins are in search of a big scoring winger to help these guys out, but do they even need it?

Look at what Malkin did to help James Neal break out last season. With Dallas, Neal was a consistent 25-ish goal per year guy. One season with a fully healthy Malkin and suddenly he’s a 40-goal guy.

It’s hard to judge what Crosby was able to do to help his linemates in 22 games last season, but when he’s been healthy guys like Chris Kunitz and Pascal Dupuis have benefited greatly thanks to having “Sid The Kid” setting them up.

While the Penguins lost Steve Sullivan to Phoenix while they pursued Zach Parise, if Ray Shero opts to go with what he’s got it might be time to give Eric Tangradi a shot to see if he’s all he’s cracked up to be.

  1. mickeyb21 - Jul 25, 2012 at 12:03 PM

    Can we stop it with the “Sid the Kid”? He is older than I am and I’ve been out of college for over two years now. Just call him Sid or something. “The Kid” thing needs to be retired.

    • jernster21 - Jul 25, 2012 at 12:20 PM

      Welcome to PHT comments, it must be your first day. It has been retired in favor of soup can.

      • mickeyb21 - Jul 25, 2012 at 12:52 PM

        It’s not even the comments I care about. It’s the media carrying that “nickname” along. It made sense when he was 18, but he’s what 24/25 now? I just expected more out of Yerdon. #wrongaboutyerdon

      • cleverbob - Jul 27, 2012 at 9:53 AM


    • tsi431 - Jul 25, 2012 at 3:09 PM

      What’s next, no more Babe Ruth, instead George Herman Ruth. No more Shoeless Joe Jackson, just Joe Jackson. It was a nickname, and nicknames stick, for better or worse.

      A couple more for you, most are baseball I know.

      Nickname – Real Name

      Chipper Jones – Larry Jones
      Tiger Woods – Eldridge Woods
      Goose Gossage – Rich Gossage
      Bear Bryant – Paul Bryant
      Catfish Hunter – Jim Hunter
      Sugar Ray Leonard – Ray Leonard
      Satchel Paige – Leroy Paige
      Ed “Too Tall” Jones – Ed Jones
      Magic Johnson – Earvin Johnson

    • atwatercrushesokoye - Jul 25, 2012 at 5:38 PM

      It’s better than “the next Gretzky” name that he’s never come anywhere near close to living up to.

  2. caps247 - Jul 25, 2012 at 12:16 PM

    I’d rather that than all this “soup can” nonsense.

    • bobhpine - Jul 26, 2012 at 2:23 PM

      Do you like Billy Cundiff?

  3. ucaneverscorenoughgoals - Jul 25, 2012 at 12:19 PM

    Sid needs a top flight winger to simply shift the focus off him entirely when his line is on the ice. Dupuis had a great season last year but teams aren’t game planning to stop Pascal Dupuis. Chris Kunitz can play on either Sid or Geno’s line but he is only one guy. And, after last Season I think Neal has made a fairly solid case to stay on Geno’s line.

    Bottom line: The pen’s are 1 top six forward short of having two balanced scary lines.

    • bigoldorcafromvan - Jul 25, 2012 at 4:57 PM

      I would think if Pit could get Doan they would be scary good. Probably come out of the East and win the Cup. But of course I hope Doan signs on with my Canucks. If Pit can stay healthy this year they will be there anyway.

  4. feva4theflava - Jul 25, 2012 at 12:20 PM

    Haha, good point mickey but it’s so catchy. In terms of Sid needing a high scoring winger, it’s probably not needed but I don’t think there’s anyone on the pens’ current roster that can step in and accomplish what Neal did with Malkin, including tangredi.

    • jpelle82 - Jul 25, 2012 at 12:48 PM

      you are dilusional if you believe tangradi can put up 40 goals, and i dont care if this were the 80’s and gretzky was his center. don’t get me wrong i like him but he doesnt have close to the shot neal does or the nose for the net

    • jpelle82 - Jul 25, 2012 at 12:55 PM

      you are right, i dont think there is anyone on the current roster that can…but a guy like semin or doan has the potential if paired with him year round like neal was with malkin…neal benefited from the powerplay mostly, nobody on the pens roster tk, dupuis, kunitz, will be able to be as effective on the pp either as neal was…in fact i dont think if staal was paired with crosby he could have put up 40 either. i like tangradi but i dont see any forwards with the baby pens stepping up and making any kind of decent contribution this year other than grinding it out and filling injury slots

  5. norseman81 - Jul 25, 2012 at 12:22 PM

    I think Shero needs to keep building through the Draft. Crosby and Malkin have proven to make average players above average. Doan would be a great fit but, I would think that you might as well throw the young kids on their wings. “Sid the Kid” needs to be retired.

  6. earlcpeacock - Jul 25, 2012 at 12:32 PM

    joe yerdon, i am highly dissapointed in you calling him.sid the kid. everyone in the hockey world knows him only as soup can sid and you should probably change that in your article. stay girthy my friends

  7. rockthered1286 - Jul 25, 2012 at 12:57 PM

    Let it be known I am reserving all of my typical devils advocate comments when it comes to Pens related articles as this is Pens day on PHT. I shall say nothing about Crosby, head inuries, the defense, the FA misses, etc.

    I will say one thing and one thing only: I think Geno is the best player on this team hands down and I would kill to have a guy like that on the Caps.

    See? I can be complimentary.

    • napoleonblownapart6887 - Jul 25, 2012 at 1:50 PM

      *Golf Clap*

      • rockthered1286 - Jul 25, 2012 at 3:14 PM

        I knew you would. I have to admire and a respect a good team. It’s not like they back into the playoffs every year. Although my Caps did last year technically and made one hell of a run. But I’ll save that for Caps day when the soup can morons will never leave their computers all day posting nonsense while they wait for their mom to bring their pizza bagels down to the basement they’ve been living in since 1972.

        No thats not a Pens fan shot. Just the soup can morons. Grow up.

      • ray2013 - Jul 25, 2012 at 4:12 PM

        “while they wait for their mom to bring their pizza bagels down to the basement they’ve been living in since 1972”.


    • danphipps01 - Jul 25, 2012 at 2:00 PM

      Yeah, but your one thing is still wrong.

  8. stakex - Jul 25, 2012 at 12:59 PM

    Well the Pens had a league high 3.33 goals per game. So even with losing Sullivan and Staal who combined for 42 goals, there still in good shape. Of course they would like to have a top line winger to play with Crosby, but its debatable how much better that would make them. They could also use some help on the 3rd/4th line after losing Staal, who was responsible for most of the 3rd lines scoring. They don’t NEED it though.

    What Malkin/Crosby NEED is defensive help. The Pens won’t get past the first round with the defense they have right now, no matter how many goals they score during the season.

    Side Note: Its also debatable how many goals Crosby is good for this year. While Pens fans like to talk about how good he was last year, he racked up a lot of secondary assists… and not that many goals. Not to mention his shooting % was the lowest in his career by a wide margin. If thta doesn’t change, the Pens might in fact be in some trouble on offense.

    • xavier46 - Jul 25, 2012 at 10:31 PM

      side note: it’s debatable how many goals any NHL’er is good for in the upcoming year.

  9. earlcpeacock - Jul 25, 2012 at 1:30 PM

    every day is soup can day on pro crosby talk. we rule the ice and your moms hole

    • danphipps01 - Jul 25, 2012 at 1:51 PM

      Funny, it seemed like Philly kind of kicked your asses this year. =/

    • broadstreetbeatdown - Jul 25, 2012 at 4:09 PM

      Hens needed a fluffer. I guess u got the job

  10. danphipps01 - Jul 25, 2012 at 1:41 PM

    It’s not honestly that hard to give him a scoring winger, they just need to get over the idea that said winger needs to be a superstar. The line’s already got one of those – what it needs is a finisher to combo with Sid. Michael Ryder comes to mind as the mould of player I’m thinking of here – cheaper salary-wise, not a huge point generator, but come on, he had 35 goals last year skating with a playmaker who isn’t even up to Crosby’s ankles in terms of skill level. Imagine the damage a Ryder-esque guy could wreak taking setups from Sid.

    Point is, get over Parise and Ryan, people. It makes far more sense to trade for a lower-level player who’s still a good shot-first type of guy and having the extra few million in cap space free to pursue a top-four defenseman. Yandle-Letang would be pretty scary, and Phoenix has already shopped the guy once this year.

    • napoleonblownapart6887 - Jul 25, 2012 at 1:54 PM

      I agree with the first part of this sentiment. They don’t need a big time superstar winger. Just a guy who, when the puck is on his tape (and it will be if it’s coming from Crosby) can fire that biscuit past the bad guys.

      • danphipps01 - Jul 25, 2012 at 2:06 PM

        Exactly. He doesn’t even need to be all that notable a player, just a guy who scores effectively when he’s paired with a setup man. They’ve enjoyed success with all sorts of welfare wingers – Sullivan, Kunitz, Dupuis – so why just abandon that and start throwing decade-plus behemoth offers at Parise et. al. instead? Yeah, he’ll be better than Ryder (or equivalent) on the scoreboard, but for Parise’s enormous new salary, you can pay for Ryder twice over with change. The Pens don’t need any more $7m+ contracts at forward.

      • runtheball - Jul 25, 2012 at 2:17 PM

        They need a Warren Young/Robbie Brown type guy that makes <$1M.

    • ucaneverscorenoughgoals - Jul 25, 2012 at 6:14 PM

      All valid points Danphipps. The only thing I would add is that the winger needs to be able to skate because of how much importance is placed on it in Bylsma’s system, he needs to be fast enough to keep up with Sid, AND he needs to be solid enough on the forecheck to create space for Sid.

      So in short they need: A fast, tenacious scorer who is good in the corners……Unfortunately not that many players fit that bill.

  11. earlcpeacock - Jul 25, 2012 at 2:47 PM

    philthy got their asses handed too them by the army in 09 when carcillo made that philthy mistake hahahahaha CHAMPS

    • windmiller4 - Jul 25, 2012 at 3:23 PM

      The past is a sad place to live my friend

      • xavier46 - Jul 25, 2012 at 10:34 PM

        Sure is, 1975 was an epic year…

  12. jacketsfan7 - Jul 25, 2012 at 4:09 PM

    Yeah give E.T some ice time!

  13. mattj2524 - Jul 25, 2012 at 4:16 PM

    HAHAHA!!! I love the picture they used.

    Sid touches the cutest guy he knows (himself) and checks his pulse as his heart begins to race – and Geno claps and watches like Sid’s a clown at his 5th birthday party! Another trick Sid, yay!!!

    Seriously though, as a Pitt hater, I’m hoping these 2 don’t get anyone else to play with. God forbid Doan or Ryan head that way to play with Sid…or even worse in my opinion, if Semin decides he’ll sign that one year contract for 3-5 mil, and plays on a line with Crosby…he might score 60 goals. Fact is, when your top 2 centers are these 2 guys, you’ve already got more offense than most teams in the league.

  14. jnealsmeatymember - Jul 25, 2012 at 5:12 PM

    Soupcan sid needs no help, he is the holy one that everyone in PGH worships. We drink his sweat drippings from his boyish but manly face and have nightly dreams of his redwood tree-like thighs. @soupcanarmy

  15. letangusespertplus - Jul 25, 2012 at 5:40 PM

    New Top 6 for this year.

    Left Thigh – Soup Can – Right Thigh
    Kunitz – Pringles – Man Meat

  16. sanduskysextapes - Jul 25, 2012 at 6:09 PM

    Is there any NHL team with this kind of fire power? The Franchise(TM) will continue its dominance of the NHL no matter who is blessed with playing along side the almighty Soupcan. Can not wait to see what kind of moves Lord Shero will make in the next few weeks.

  17. earlcpeacock - Jul 25, 2012 at 7:44 PM

    soup can sid has the upper torso of a greek god. his bones are so thick and if you follow his piss stream there is a pot of gold at the end of it.

  18. suepeacock - Jul 25, 2012 at 9:02 PM

    I can see the ring of that can through his silky pants …

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