The good news is that Gary and Adam Hall seem like they will be back for the playoffs. Adding two to the lineup means subtracting two. Who could it be?
Tyler Kennedy: TK has the misfortune of being a rookie lower-line energy winger; just like Roberts. Mr. Gary has 20 years and 119 NHL playoff games on Kennedy. Kennedy has just 2 goals in 23 games since returning from mono in February. By contrast, TK had eight NHL goals in thirty-one games to start his season. Kennedy is also on the AHL “Clear Day” roster, which means he is eligible to be re-assigned to Wilkes-Barre for the Calder Cup playoffs. TK is a point-per-game difference maker at the AHL level, so we’d let to 21 year old go down to a place where he’ll get a ton of minutes and see how far he can take WB/S.
Jeff Taffe: Taffe too plays a similiar role that Hall plays (4th line niche player) but Hall can kill penalties. Hall is also better at faceoffs (50.7% to 48.7%). So that gives him the edge in this book. Taffe could have a role in the playoffs for the Pens if there’s an injury and Pens fans should be pretty comfortable if Taffe has to be out there....Sure beats Kris Beech.