Season Preview: Pittsburgh Penguins

Season Preview: Pittsburgh Penguins

As long as Sidney Crosby is on this team they’ll be in the conversation as contenders and last season was no different. A solid season saw them finish 3rd in the Metropolitan Division and 9th overall but they couldn’t solve the Islanders stingy defense and were swept in the first round of the playoffs.

Additions: Alex Galchenyuk, Brandon Tanev, Dominik Kahun

Subtractions: Phil Kessel, Ollie Maatta, Matt Cullen

Forwards: 

The biggest move the Penguins made this summer was shipping out Phil Kessel for Alex Galchenyuk. If Galchenyuk doesn’t perform well and then leaves in free agency at the end of the year, this could be an ugly deal. They also signed depth player Brandon Tanev to a long-term deal which left many people scratching their heads. They do have a top-10 bottom-6 though so maybe he’ll be worth it in the short-run.

Defense:

The top-4 defense looks really strong especially if Kris Letang can stay healthy. The big question mark is whether or not Jack Johnson and Erik Gudbranson still have enough left to give.

Goalies:

Matt Murray is a solid goalie but he’s struggled with injuries throughout his career and while Casey DeSmith has been a reliable backup, the Pens have chosen to go with Tristan Jarry this season. Murray’s health will be a big question mark for this team to be successful but when he’s on their goaltending is not a concern.

The Point Prediction:

We’re expecting a big bounce-back season from Evgeni Malkin and with that the Pens take back the top spot in the Metropolitan Division. They finish 6th overall and look primed for a big playoff run.

(Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)