angryjay93 Posted January 7, 2010 Report Share Posted January 7, 2010 Pittsburgh Penguins Team Overview: To the untrained eye, Pittsburgh looks like a world beater of a team, what with Mario Lemieux and his 100 rating. Alas, the real life story is vastly different and it is indeed a difficult task to find a competitive line, especially for those who don't specialize in one-timers. The defense is also inflicted with similar problems as the offense, looks great, but plays below the expected level.Forwards: This forward group reminds me a lot of Edmonton, except it doesn't have a top 15 forward such as Petr Klima. The biggest issue facing the Penguins is a lack of speed, weight advantage and shooting. A choice must be made, load up a line with heavy guys with skills or use a line featuring weight buggers with marginal skills. Choosing the middle road isn't an attractive option due to the fact that there will be very few strengths to utilize.Feed Lemieux:Mullen-Lemieux-Jagr Joe Mullen: 6 weight, 4/3 skating, 3/5 shot, 4 sth, 3 pass, 4/3 aware, Shoots: R Joe Mullen is plan B when it comes to scoring, his 3/5 right handed shot on the left wing is very useful for unloading one timers. With Lemieux, Jagr, and Murphy passing the puck, Mullen should get ample opportunity to shoot. Mullen's other key attribute is his 6 weight, he is by far the most skilled Penguin at an acceptable weight, thus allowing him to be effective on defense and able to carry the puck up ice without getting mauled easily. So, whats Mullen's glaring issue you ask? His speed, only a 4/3 skater, he is not the fleet footed man this line is desperately in need of, also, hes a mediocre 3 passer, not ideal for a guy carrying the puck a lot. Mario Lemieux: 10 weight, 5/4 skating, 4/6 shot, 6 sth & pass, 6/4 aware, Shoots: R Lemieux is easily the most skilled player in the entire game, 4/6 shot, 6 sth, 6 pass, 5/4 skating, 6 off aware, Lemieux is the total package...except for his bulky 10 weight. Due to the fact that he can get knocked down by the majority of players in the game, Lemieux is at a distinct disadvantage when carrying the puck up the ice or dancing in the offensive zone. The user must be adept at picking their spots when deciding to go 1 on 1, if successful; Lemieux has all the tools to succeed. Where Le Magnifique really shines though is in his one-timing ability, he just sits in the slot and picks corners with sniper precision, this should be the main method of goal scoring. Jaromir Jagr: 10 weight, 5/4 skating, 3/3 shot, 5 sth, 4 pass, 4/3 aware, Shoots: L One of the more frustrating players in the game to use, Jagr is more or less in this spot by default due to his 5/4 skating, 5 sth, and 4 passing. Those skills are limited though by his 10 weight and 3/3 shot. Jagr must be used cautiously on offense, he is prone to being pushed around very easily, his passing and skating skills must be used to perfection to get much production out of him. Typically, Jagr will get attacked with vicious body checks, which could bring the defense out of position opening up a passing lane to Lemieux or Mullen, take advantage of it and try to get some quick offense. Defensively, Jagr isn't much help aside from the pokecheck. This line doesn't provide a lot of 1 on 1 razzle dazzle or defensive prowess. What it does provide though is a skilled line that should be able to cash in on a high percentage of its chances, which will be vital since chances likely won't be aplenty.Grinding Wings:Mullen-Lemieux-Straka Martin Straka: 5 weight, 3/3 skating, 2/2 shot, 2 sth, 3 pass, 3/2 aware, Shoots: L Martin Straka is your run of the mill weight bugger, 3/3 skating, 5 weight. All we're trying to get out of him is some solid defense on a team bloated with heavyweights. He is capable of carrying the puck up the ice and using his 3 passing to dish off to Lemieux or Mullen. Don't get carried away with Straka on offense though, only a select few are capable of squeezing production out of him on a consistent basis.To Hell with Skill:Straka-Mullen-Mceachern Shawn McEachern: 7 weight, 3/3 skating, 3/3 shot, 3 sth & pass, 3/3 aware, Shoots: L Mceachern is just a beefed up version of Straka, 7 weight and a 3/3 shot and skating, there isn't much at all special about Mceachern, but for those managers looking for the most capable weight bug line available should look no further. This line possesses a capable scorer in the middle and some feisty wingers, but it provides nothing more than expansion like speed and could easily be overwhelmed by a faster team.Other options:There are three other players I have yet to mention who possess varying skills...but of course, have maddening weaknesses. Ron Francis: 9 weight, 4/3 skating, 4/3 shot, 4 sth & pass, 4/4 aware, Shoots: L Ron Francis is the most balanced of the three, but that doesn't help too much considering hes only a 4/3 skater with a 4/3 shot at 9 weight. He doesn't provide anything particularily helpful to any line combo, but he might fit in somewhere. Kevin Stevens: 11 weight, 3/4 skating, 3/4 shot, 4 sth & pass, 5/3 aware, Shoots: L Kevin Stevens is another frustrating player in that he has this great 77 overall rating, but produces very little on the ice. At 11 weight and 3/4 skating, Stevens is not suited to use his 4 passing or 3/4 shot effectively because he spends so much of his time on his butt. But if you got a thing for Stevens, then go for it. Rick Tocchet: 9 weight, 2/2 skating, 4/5 shot, 3 sth & pass, 5/4 aware, Shoots: R Lastly, Rick Tocchet possesses one of those coveted 4/5 shots, but at 2/2 speed and 9 weight, it won't get used often. He is one of the worst puck carriers in the league, and thus should only be used as a one timing option.As a whole, this group is at a real disadvantage, it takes a lot of solid passing, creativity, and timing to utilize any trio that is iced.Forwards Rating: 4.5/10Defense: Aside from Ulf Samuelsson and Larry Murphy, there isn't a whole lot of depth in this unit. With that said, this group isn't completely lost, between Murphy and Samuelsson, this is a skilled duo that can pass the puck around effectively and help keep the fore checkers at bay.Murphy-Samuelsson Larry Murphy: 10 weight, 4/3 skating, 4/2 shot, 4 sth & pass, 4/5 aware, Shoots: R Murphy has some elite skills at defense, 4/2 shot, 4 passing and sth, and 4/5 awareness. The downside is his 10 weight and slightly above average 4/3 skating. I find it preferable to hide Murphy behind Mullen or Straka because they can then help cut down or slow down on rushing forwards into Murphys area and it allows him to be a bit more freewheeling with his rushes up the ice. Although he isn't a quality body checker, Murphy does seem rather adept at protecting the slot in the defensive zone and picking off many passes that come his way, thus salvaging at least a little defensive value from him. Ulf Samuelsson: 8 weight, 4/4 skating, 3/0 shot, 3 sth & pass, 3/5 aware, Shoots: L Ulf is a very solid defensive option, even though he is not a great open ice hitter, his 5 defensive awareness will often times keep him in the defensive zone protecting the slot. Like Murphy, Ulf is also adept at snuffing out passes in the offensive zone, hopefully that skill can help kick start some counter attacks. What really makes Ulf useful though is his 4/4 skating, this skill allows him to keep up with some of the faster forwards in the game and apply a solid poke check. Other Options: Paul Stanton: 8 weight, 3/3 skating, 4/1 shot, 2 sth, 4 pass, 2/3 aware, Shoots: R If injuries or penalties arise, Paul Stanton is the best option, his 3/3 skating, 4 passing and 4/1 shot at 8 weight allow for a lot of the same skills that Murphy has in a slightly more user friendly package. Brian Fogarty: 8 weight, 1/1 speed, 1/0 shot, 2 sth, 1 pass, 2/1 aware, Shoots: L Memo to new users, you don't get to draft this guy unless you are from Pittsburgh or you get clearance from the Pittsburgh boys, capiche? Defense Rating: 6/10Goalie Zone: Tom Barrasso: 10 weight, 4/4 skating, 4 puck control, 4/4/4/4 save, Catch: R With 4 ratings all across the board, Barrasso couldn't be much more solid without being spectacular. At 10 weight he can be a bit cumbersome to use in net as his acceleration is lacking, on the flip side, he will be very tough to ram into the net. He is typically picked in the top 5-10 goalies in most draft leagues and performs reasonably well.Goalie Zone: 7/10Final Word: Typically in the discussion for worst non-expansion team, the Penguins are a very difficult team to use. Despite this fact though, most users seem to do fairly well with them in classic league play, which means the skills of Lemieux, Samuelsson, Murphy, and Barrasso must be getting this team somewhere. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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