In Round Two of the PHN Debate Series, PHN goes head-to-head with ESPN radio host and Mark Madden substitute host Adam Crowley. While the Crowl-man is known for his unenviable allegiance to West Virginia University and being part of the Pittsburgh Steelers radio network, he’s also a pretty good hockey analyst. Crowley joined us to debate Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Marcus Pettersson, the NHL trade market, and if the Penguins should hold back salary to move Pettersson.
Crowley put up a good fight.
If you missed Round One between PHN and 93-7, the Fan morning host Chris Mack, I won the battle when I convinced Mack the Penguins should protect Brandon Tanev, but I lost the war when the Penguins didn’t.
Let the battle begin.
PHN Pittsburgh Penguins Debate, Opening statements:
Crowley: The Penguins should trade Marcus Pettersson, even if it means eating salary.
Ron Hextall and Brian Burke are saddled with the difficult task of keeping the Penguins competitive while also attempting to accrue assets and not leave the cupboard bare for the future. Jim Rutherford left the Pens brass in an unenviable position.
Taking over for GMJR at this particular moment is like playing in a golf scramble event where each of your three partners shanked the tee-shot onto the adjacent green. The offseason thus far has been something of a lay-up. Hextall and Burke could have gone for the green and risked hitting the ball into the woods.
Instead, they’ve played it safe.
But when you’ve got Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and Kris Letang, you’ve got to go for the pin. The Penguins, assuming the health of Malkin at some point during the season, still boast terrific center depth. They’ve got an excellent top defense pair. They’ve got a two-time Cup-winning coach.
What they’re missing is a capable goaltender. Tristan Jarry almost single-handedly led to the Penguins’ dismissal in the first round of the playoffs. They need better. Is that player available? I’m not sure. If he is, Hextall and Burke should pull out all the stops in an attempt to acquire him. Marcus Pettersson is a good defenseman. To attain a good player, you probably have to give one up. His cap hit is manageable, but he becomes even more attractive if the Pens pay a portion of his salary.
If that type of move can land Pittsburgh an upgrade in goal, the head brass should do it and not think twice about it.