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Dabura

James Neal

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There's been some talk that Neal may be shopped this summer. Elliotte Friedman:

Pittsburgh doesn't have young forwards on early deals like Bryan Bickell, Brandon Saad and Andrew Shaw, who played major roles in Chicago's recent win. That's who they've got to find, and no one would be surprised if they tested James Neal's value to see what's out there.

http://www.cbc.ca/sports-content/hockey/opinion/2014/05/cap-increase-wont-ease-penguins-roster-dilemma.html

You can and should hate James Neal. But let's face it: we could really use a guy like him.

Would you be interested?

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Hate him but would love him. No way they shop him though. He's on an awesome contract.

I wouldn't be so sure. My impression - for what little it's worth - is they'd like to move a key player, whether it's to free up money or adjust the team's dynamic or play the accountability/optics game. I guess in Neal's case it'd be more the second one (team dynamic). Neal seemed really lost without Malkin. And when Neal gets lost, he gets frustrated. And when he gets frustrated, he gets stupid. And when he gets stupid, the Pens spend too much time shorthanded. Don't spend too much time shorthanded. Get rid of Cable and upgrade to DirecTV.

_SP_ likes this

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As always, for whom is the question. Do we need Neal or guys like him on the team? hell Yes! Do I want neal for the price of Nyquist, tatar, and Sproul? No. That is the rate for a guy like him. Big, tough, physical, and good for 40 goals every 80 games. Good contract.

Now Neal gets mentioned because he has a tradable contract. But one of the Pens biggest problems is: they lack size and toughness up front. Doubt they trade away their only player that brings those qualities every shift.

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I wouldn't be so sure. My impression - for what little it's worth - is they'd like to move a key player, whether it's to free up money or adjust the team's dynamic or play the accountability/optics game. I guess in Neal's case it'd be more the second one (team dynamic). Neal seemed really lost without Malkin. And when Neal gets lost, he gets frustrated. And when he gets frustrated, he gets stupid. And when he gets stupid, the Pens spend too much time shorthanded. Don't spend too much time shorthanded. Get rid of Cable and upgrade to DirecTV.

They absolutely robbed him out of Dallas. He's also well liked in their locker room. He's also on a bargain contract. Again, no way he moves.

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When I watch him play and read up on all of his scouting reports, he looks/sounds like a younger version of Johan Franzen, with an added mix of dumb penalties and cheap shots. He gets slapped with with the same inconsistent label, and has all the tools to be a power forward, but doesn't always use them. He also dropped off in the playoffs this season with only 4pts in 13 games.

That being said, I certainly wouldn't complain if he was added to the Red Wings. Never hurts to have another winger with some finishing ability.

Problem is, what would it cost to pry him from the Pens? Part of the reason behind Shero's dismissal is the Penguins inability to draft/develop, leaving them with a lack of strong organizational depth at all positions. I've got to think that they'll be looking for pro-level prospects that are close to contributing at the NHL level. They're potentially losing Niskanen, Orpik and Engelland as UFA's, and the don't seem very high on guys like Despres and Samuelsson, so I wonder if they'll want Sproul or Ouellet (or both?) in exchange. Then again, maybe Almquist could be a valuable trade chip?

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They absolutely robbed him out of Dallas. He's also well liked in their locker room. He's also on a bargain contract. Again, no way he moves.

If this were a normal offseason for the Pens, I'd agree. But it's not. They want change, and they'd probably like to move someone, even if it'd be mostly symbolic. I'm not making this up or jumping to conclusions, I'm basing it off stuff that's coming out of their own camp. I'm also not saying they'll aggressively shop Neal and try to move him at all costs. I'm saying there's a possibility they see what's out there, because why not.

Also, for what it's worth... 1) 99.99999% of all players in the NHL can be described as "well liked in their locker room." And 2) there've actually been some whispers about Neal being a petulant rich kid spoiled brat POS who the organization has had to "sit down and set straight" more than once...

http://blogs.post-gazette.com/sports/2013-06-20-18-51-15/empty-netters/41477-the-day-after-after-05-15-14

He's also the player off the ice who can be petulant in his dealings with team and arena employees as well as media. When a team-initiated Twitter campaign involving Neal was hijacked by fans primarily from Boston and Philadelphia, he protested his involvement in it with team employees in front of several members of the media. While Neal has no obligation to be an agreeable human being, particularly with those in the media, it's apparently a significant enough problem that Penguins management and teammates have addressed him repeatedly about it.
Edited by Dabura

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If this were a normal offseason for the Pens, I'd agree. But it's not. They want change, and they'd probably like to move someone, even if it'd be mostly symbolic. I'm not making this up or jumping to conclusions, I'm basing it off stuff that's coming out of their own camp. I'm also not saying they'll aggressively shop Neal and try to move him at all costs. I'm saying there's a possibility they see what's out there, because why not.

Also, for what it's worth... 1) 99.99999% of all players in the NHL can be described as "well liked in their locker room." And 2) there've actually been some whispers about Neal being a petulant rich kid spoiled brat POS who the organization has had to "sit down and set straight" more than once...

http://blogs.post-gazette.com/sports/2013-06-20-18-51-15/empty-netters/41477-the-day-after-after-05-15-14

I think you're too excited about the possibility of Neal coming here. Again, he won't move. Let's rehash this in the offseason when moves actually happen.

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50-50 that he moves. Chance it is to us? .0000000001%. I never say never, but with Holland......... Not his type of move.

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Unless Holland blows away the next best offer, why would they trade him to Detroit where he'd have several chances to knee or elbow Crosby and Malkin instead of sending him west?

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Only one thing to say about it... #AskNeal

this was the greatest thing the pens have ever done... haha

"#askneal if you owned a bar, how cheap would your shots be?" :P

ahkmed likes this

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