Thursday, March 04, 2010

Penguins acquire LW Alexei Ponikarovsky

Yeah, this is about 36 hours late, but it's going up here for posterity.

The Pens sent Luca Caputi and Martin Skoula to the Leafs for Alexei Ponikarovsky.

Ponikarovsky (typing that name is going to get old quickly) will jump into a top 6 forward spot immediately, given that he's been a consistent goal scorer for several years now. My guess is that he'll play the left side with Geno, but someone will have to play the right side on that line. Dupuis has been scoring this year, so I guess that makes him the most likely candidate.

Ponikarovsky will also shoot the puck more than some of the Pens other forwards (like Dupuis and Fedotenko).

I'm not too disappointed to see Caputi leave. He wasn't a top grade prospect (or he wouldn't have been included in a deal for a 20 goal scoring rental player). Skoula was simply the odd man out on the blue line and any little bit of cap space was helpful to Ray Shero.

The real question now is who will sit from this group of forwards, assuming no one is hurt. My guess is Mike Rupp or, if he's not playing well, Fedotenko (though we know Bylsma likes Fedotenko, so that may be less likely as the playoffs near). Any way you look at it, the flexibility is a nice thing to have, assuming it doesn't cause problems in the locker room.

No comments: