Shelly Anderson: Good Monday. It seems as if we've had some newsy weeks lately. You can submit your chat questions now or when we go live at 2:30 p.m. Eastern. On a side note, the chat might go into standby while I travel home from Ottawa. Also, as noted in a blog posting, if there is a hangup with that travel, there' s a chance I won't be able to do the chat or give notice of that. You can root for United to come through.
T: Why don't players with broken sticks go to the bench immediately to sit or get a new one? It's like a power play for the oppenent with only 4 sticks. It would only last 10 seconds max if they went to the bench instead of the extended chance that usually happens.
Shelly Anderson: How about that -- a leadoff question not about Sidney Crosby. When a player breaks his stick, it's a judgment call as to whether the risk is greater to remain on the ice without a stick -- at least he can use his body, maybe move the puck with his hand -- or to go back to the bench. Factors include whether his team is shorthanded, whether his bench is on the near or far side from where he is, which team has the puck, etc.
JamesinNYC: Probably every question you will get today will start off with "How did they miss.... and followed with "Any news today on
Shelly Anderson: Your question cut off, but I get the gist. The news so far is that Sidney Crosby is on the ice at Consol Energy Center as we chat, along with Jordan Staal, Simon Despres and conditioning coach Mike Kadar. There is no word yet on the findings of specialists who are reading Crosby's recent MRI and CAT scan to evaluate his newly found but apparently healed neck injury. Until we get that information, it's tough to answer your question. What if they decide the neck injury is from, say, his days in junior?
DaveVA: Do you expect the team to hold a press conference to talk about Sid's latest test results?
Shelly Anderson: No idea whether it will be a news conference or a released statement or if news will just come out in normal post-practice or postgame interview sessions. It's also possible reporters will hear about through other means before the Penguins go public. News could come as early as today, but "early in the week" was as specific as things have been.
Ryan: Shelly - What (if any) moves do you see Ray Shero making before the deadline? And what do you see as the major areas of need (besides a healthy Crosby! haha)?
Shelly Anderson: With Jordan Staal on the mend, the Penguins aren't in great need (other than, as you pointed out, getting Sidney Crosby back), and GM Ray Shero likes this team. So I'm not sure we'll see anything major. The draft is in Pittsburgh this year. Perhaps if the Penguins feel this is a deep year for prospects they will try to land a couple extra picks.
Ryan: Good news with Staal on the ice. I guess he is progressing. Any word on how far out he is?
Shelly Anderson: Not yet. If you recall, I predicted that we would see Staal on the ice this week. The main practice today doesn't start until 4 p.m. to give players time to travel back if they went away for the All-Star break, so we don't know whether Staal might practice today or, if not, how his knee will feel after skating today. But, obviously, he's improving. Under the original timetable, he could be back in the next couple of weeks.
Ryan: What do you see the lines being when Staal comes back? I am guessing he slots into the second line as center with Kennedy and Cooke or Dupis?
Shelly Anderson: Sounds good to me, unless -- finally -- coach Dan Bylsma wants to take a look at Staal on Evgeni Malkin's wing. How would a Staal-Malkiin-James Neal line sound? More likely, Staal will center a second line, with Dustin Jeffrey and Joe Vitale or Richard Park as the other two centers.
Captain Geech: Is it true that Crosby did not get best UPMC treatment because of using Highmark insurance?
Shelly Anderson: Silly question.
Guest: what happens when despres is healthy? Does he go back down to the ahl or do they make room for him on the roster? Any idea on who would sit if he is a part of the 6?
Shelly Anderson: I'm thinking that he would go to Wilkes-Barre first after being out because of a knee injury and because the Penguins really don't have roster room for eight defensemen. What happens after that will be determined by injuries and how the defense is performing.
Anne: Compared to ten years ago, is it much more work being a reporter and keeping Twitter, online PG news, and other reports all current? It seems that days like the last few would be very busy.
Shelly Anderson: Well, yeah. And chats.
TP: Should we expect to see a larger dose of Brent Johnson in the coming weeks?
Shelly Anderson: You would think the Penguins will have to play backup goalie Brent Johnson more. He hasn't been as strong this season as he was the past two, but Marc-Andre Fleury just can't play every game or nine out of 10 and still have enough left in the tank for a long playoff run.
Paul: Do you think that Martin or Michalek will be dealt at the deadline?
Shelly Anderson: That would surprise me.
Ryan: Do you see anyway the Pens will be able to keep Crosby, Malkin, Staal, and Neal long term?
Shelly Anderson: It's possible, but it's tough to analyze not knowing what's going to be in the new collective bargaining agreement. We have no idea about salary cap -- structure or even if there will be one -- in the new deal, whenever that gets struck. The current one expires in September. In addition, as things stand, the cap keeps going up and Shero has been really good at filling in around his core players with young or less expensive complimentary players.
DaveVA: Is it legitimate to question the Pens medical staff given the rash of injuries and incorrect diagnoses?
Shelly Anderson: It's distressing to think there are mistakes made. We don't have all the information on Crosby. In a case like James Neal's broken-not-broken-foot, there were standard follow-up tests done that gave the true answer without him missing so much as a practice. As for the injuries, I don't know of ways to prevent a lot of these -- collisions, some of them penalized, have been a big cause.
steve: do the players have to show ID before they board their private charter flights?
Shelly Anderson: Yes, there is security, though not in the main terminals with us regular folks. They have to show ID and, when going between the United States and Canada, need to have passports and go through customs like anyone else -- although that is often arranged separately from the masses, too.
Ryan: If anyone gets dealt at the deadline for draft picks or a player, who do you think could be had?
Shelly Anderson: Hard to know what other teams want combined with what Shero might be willing to give up. I don't see it being, say, Paul Martin or Zbynek Michalek, for example.
Mike: If Sid stays out I think we have more a need for additional parts than you think? Still seems like we need at least one top 6 type to really contend for the cup...no?
Shelly Anderson: What they need, besides Crosby back, is for a few more of their top-six players to produce as such. They aren't going to replace Crosby, so getting him back would simply be a mammoth bonus and upgrade. When Staal is back, four of the top six will be him, Malkin, Neal and Kunitz. Crosby would be five. Dupuis, Kennedy. Cooke or Sullivan could be a sixth. Many teams would love to have that.
DaveVA: Any thoughts on why the second and third lines are having trouble scoring?
Shelly Anderson: Good question. That needs to change. The defense, which is the genesis of this team's offense, is intact. Malkin's line can't do it all, all the time.
steve: thanks for your earlier response. do the players have deal with the hotel check in/out process like us common folks?
Shelly Anderson: Anytime hotels have a big group arriving at once, athletes or otherwise, there is usually an express check-in set up.
Shelly Anderson: OK. That seemed to go by fast. Again, a nice mix of questions. Thanks a lot. We'll do it again next week.
|< Prev||Next >|