Home Pittsburgh Sports College Basketball Dropping the Gloves with Dan Bylsma

Dropping the Gloves with Dan Bylsma

After the Independence Day signings of Zach Parise and Ryan Suter in Minnesota left non-Minneapolis based hockey fans disappointed, Penguins management didn’t take long to rebound, warming up to two new free agent prospects: Wingers Alexander Semin and Shane Doan.

Semin, a supremely talented forward, can be toxic at times, to the point where he was occasionally a healthy scratch for the Capitals this year. Nonetheless, he could be better than even James Neal on either Sidney Crosby’s or Evgeni Malkin’s wing. While he took a dig at Crosby a few years back, that’s ancient history to hockey players who realize how dangerous they could be teaming up on the same line or power play.

Doan, 35, is a powerful forward with tremendous leadership skills and character. In their first-round loss to Philadelphia last year, it’s possible that one of the many problems the Pens had was the lack of a strong veteran presence.

While addressing the media at the first day of the Penguins’ Development Camp on Tuesday, Pens’ head coach Dan Bylsma addressed the issues of Semin and Doan, or promoting from within the organization.

On the Penguins current forward situation:
We feel good about our top six. We feel we have good players there. Could we possibly look to add a player there on a top-six role? We certainly could.

On possible top-six forwards already in the organization:
We certainly have ideas within our team in terms of players that could play there on the top six and play next to guys like Sid and Geno. You’ll see I think a possibility of seeing some of the younger players in our organization get a chance to play there as well. Whether it’s Eric Tangradi playing on a top-six role, which we’ve heard a lot about over the last three years, or Beau Bennett getting a chance to play there in exhibition… or Tyler Kennedy getting a chance to play there.

On Semin:
Alexander Semin has scored 40 goals in this league. He’s a dangerous player and you know when he’s on the ice. He’s been dangerous on the Capitals power play.

On if there are hard feelings toward Semin:
Arron Asham was a Flyer and we were happy to have him here on our team when he came. That’s not an issue at all.

On Doan:
I
f you’re talking about adding a player, there’s certainly Shane Doan. There are certainly attributes of him and having him on our team in that top-six role – (he’s a) big-bodied guy and a strong power winger would be something you look to add.

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