- Well, this changes things.
Let's look at what the Penguins gave up:
- Colby Armstrong: The best thing he had going for him was that he was Sidney Crosby's best friend and road roommate. Armstrong seemed to find his stride, notching 40 points in 47 games just a couple of seasons ago and throwing several devasting checks last season. But this year he hasn't produced as much and those huge open ice hits have been absent. Army's a great guy and a good locker-room guy, but his NHL ceiling is a 3rd line winger.
- Erik Christensen: Shootout specialist but with the Pens depth chart he never really could get quality minutes and couldn't fit in on the wing.
- Angelo Esposito: Excellent prospect who dropped in the draft and the second person to ever be cut from Team Canada's WJC team three times in a row.
And the Penguins get:
- Marian Hossa. Marian freakin Hossa.
- Pascal Dupuis. I saw Atlanta play in Washington a couple of weeks ago and I thought Dupuis was the Tbombs best forward that night, FWIW.
And perhaps just as important, here's who didn't get Marian Hossa:
- The Ottawa Senators
- The Montreal Canadiens
The East is wide open and the Penguins, out of all the competitive teams were the only ones to drastically improve themselves. Heck, they were the only ones to really improve themselves at all (excusing the Lapointe to Ottawa deal).
For now who cares about whether this will backfire in the long run or whether or not the Pens gave up too much or if it will all work. The great thing about being a fan is the excitement the game gives you. The Penguins just got a dynamic, offensive skilled winger. For the time being we'll let the Penguins front office (who probably knows better than any talking head you head opine) deal with the details.
They must have a plan. But at least it's starting with hopefully a lengthy playoff run.