Thursday, July 10, 2014

Time to Jet

February 14. 2013 1:48PM
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The Pittsburgh organization waited a little too long with Eric Tangradi.
Last year Tangradi was still considered a top-notch prospect - he had size, could score regularly at the AHL level and thrived on net front play. He had all the makings of a future NHL power forward.
Problem was he never succeeded in an NHL role with Pittsburgh. And he wasn't going to - not with a roster deep with forwards at the NHL level. The Penguins knew that, I suspect. But I doubt the rest of the NHL did.
Last year was the time to trade Tangradi. His stock was high and the Penguins could have gotten some real value in return.
Instead, they waited.
They gave Tangradi another look this season and it didn't work out. Now, the rest of the NHL was aware that Tangradi had only scored one goal in 45 NHL games. They were aware that he was a healthy scratch for eight straight games and they knew the Penguins couldn't send him down without exposing him to waivers.
So when the Penguins finally decided to get something in return for Tangradi, Winnipeg ponied up with a seventh round pick.
At least Pittsburgh got something, but last year they could've gotten more.
It will be interesting to see how Tangradi performs at the NHL level with another franchise and a different system. I wouldn't be surprised to see him put it together eventually, especially if the Jets exercise patience and give Tangradi a regular spot in the lineup.
- Beau Bennett spent Wednesday in Pittsburgh to be checked by doctors. I bet he's going to spend a lot more time there, perhaps the rest of the season. We've all seen Bennett's dynamic playmaking ability. Now, it appears Pittsburgh will soon be ready to see that ability alongside Malkin and Neal on its second line.

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