August 16, 2014

Michael Amato

2014-08-16

Thoughts on Torey Krug, Simon Gagne, and the Pens top six

 

Austin Wallace here, make sure you take a look at the new prospect ramblings! Ross and I are both back from vacation and we will be puming these out more often. 

 

 

If you haven't picked up Dobber's 2014-15 Fantasy Guide yet, what are you waiting for? Don't waste any time grabbing an edge on your competition.

 

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Interesting report this week that Boston Bruins defenseman Torey Krug has received a significant offer from a KHL team. Krug is a restricted free agent and he's going to sign with the Bruins at some point, but why not use it as a bargaining chip during negotiations with Boston? The KHL has shown the ability to dish out mega contracts in recent years, so it makes sense they would try and tempt players likely headed for bridge deals.

 

Krug tied for the team lead in points by a defenseman with Zdeno Chara at 40, and the youngster even posted 15 more shots than the big man. Given the fact that Chara is 37 and his defensive responsibilities are taking more and more out of him, look for Krug to get even more offensive opportunities next season. He and Dougie Hamilton are the future of that Bruins blue line.

 

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Solid piece by Justin Bourne here looking at if Tyler Seguin could win the scoring title.

 

You likely noticed that the young center had a nice year with Dallas, but “nice year” doesn’t really do it justice. He finished alone in fourth in the NHL with 84 points, and helped make up one of the most dynamic duos in hockey alongside Jamie Benn. He took 294 shots (fourth-most in the league), leading to 37 goals on a wholly sustainable 12.6% shooting percentage (sustainable for an elite shooter like Seguin, that is). He got a step faster and noticeably stronger; it wasn't luck.

 

It's not that farfetched. Catching Crosby will be tough, but as Bourne notes in the piece, Crosby's linemates Pascal Dupuis and Chris Kunitz will be 35 when this season rolls around and keep in mind Dupuis is coming off major knee surgery.

 

Seguin, on the other hand, will see the talent around him trend upward, as Jason Spezza and Ales Hemsky are entering the fold. Spezza and Seguin figure to center the top two lines, but they should see time together on the power play. Given Dallas' wide-open offensive style, Seguin will have a shot at 90-plus points.

 

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So the Boston Bruins are reportedly going to have a look at Simon Gagne during training camp. I was waiting for them to make a low risk, high reward move with their limited cap space, but I thought it might come in the form of a free agent like Dustin Penner.

 

It's hard to imagine Gagne having a real fantasy impact if he even cracks the team since he was out of the league entirely last year, however, the Bruins have nothing to lose here. They need a forward to try and replace Jarome Iginla's production and even though it's extremely unlikely Gagne will do that, it should cost them next to nothing if they choose to sign him and they can always cut him if Gagne has nothing left in the tank.

 

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Prospect Kevin Hayes will become a free agent after failing to come to terms with the Chicago Blackhawks. Hayes, a first-round pick in 2010, is a big body that many feel is ready to contribute at the NHL level now. He spent the last four seasons at Boston College and is coming off a campaign that saw him notch 27 goals and 65 points.

 

The word is Hayes didn't feel like he would get enough playing time in C