Found March 12, 2012 on
Hockey Fan Land:
We all know it's any day now we will witness the second coming of Sidney Crosby. But when 87 returns, who will be on his wings?
Obviously the line of James Neal, Evgeni Malkin and Chris Kunitz has been one of, if not the top line in the NHL. Adding a player like Crosby into a line like that sounds promising, but it's the wrong move.
Why would you want to break up the chemistry Neal, Malkin and Kunitz have created? Unfathomable. The last thing you want to do is separate a line generating as many goals and points as them. Quite frankly, I'm sure both Neal and Kunitz would love to play on the same line again as Crosby. But why not spread the talent out.
I foresee Crosby playing with Steve Sullivan and Pascal Dupuis. Money.
You have a player who can do it all in Sid, a sharp passer in Sullivan, and Dupuis is someone with speed and can create opportunities. Sid makes everyone better just by playing ice time with them. Sullivan and Dupuis can take some of the load off Sid by giving him time and space. And the best part is all three of these guys can coexist without breaking up the Malkin line.
A second line combination with a Hart candidate, a guy who doesn't wash his hair and a 32-year-old work horse with 45 points on the year is something not to be touched. The line matching for opposing teams would be a nightmare. Do you send your first line out against Sidney and company or Geno and company? Either way, you're hosed.
Chances are we'll find out where he'll end up 24 to 48 hours before he returns. You can slice it any direction, but this team offensively is going to explode when opposing defenses don't know which line to defend the endless scoring potential of the Penguins top six forwards. NHL beware.
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“I believe he will play the way he knows best, which is to compete at the highest level he can.”
“He is very strong mentally and will be ready for it. If he had any doubt about his abilities he wouldn’t risk it. Hockey is also what he loves to do.”
-Pat Brisson, player agent for Sidney Crosby. More on Crosby from Helene Elliott of the LA Times.
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