We’ve all been to a particular ice cream shop advertising cotton candy ice cream with unlimited toppings. At first it’s the most exciting thing we’ve ever seen. That first bite is undeniably special. However, as time wears on it becomes un-edible. The pure sugar becomes too much.
Today, I offer that Kris Letang is cotton candy ice cream, with sprinkles, oreos, peanutbutter, gummy sharks, and the entire Willy Wonka Factory. He is undeniably talented and fun to watch. In fact I’m not sure I’ve ever seen someone cover more ice in a game than Letang. Maybe that’s the problem. Maybe he has been to unreliable at his actual position – defense.
On arguably the most talented offensive roster in the league the Penguins don’t need backend scoring. They need more Marcus Peterssons. It has never been more evident than this past seven game stretch without Letang. The Penguins are 6-1, and more importantly Matt Murray and Casey DeSmith look more confident in net. Allowing less than 3 or less goals in every game, boasting 2 shutouts and a .953 sv pct as a team. I emphasize team because that’s what the backend has looked like. Well positioned on breakouts and a simplified break in/ power play.
This is nothing new in 2017 the Pittsburgh Penguins won the Stanley Cup without the incredibly talented Letang. In that playoff run Matt Murray’s stats were out of this world (.937 Sv Pct – 1.70 GAA).
Now, before I get run out of this town. I propose Letang should stay put on the bench when he comes back OR WILD THOUGHT. Put him on a wing where he belongs. 0 liability on defense all of the creative perks of his normal great offensive play. Since Letang came into the league I always thought he’d play perfectly on a wing with Crosby. Unfortunately for him, McCann has been a monster with Sid and Guentzel.
So whatever the future holds for the cotton candy conundrum that is Letang I hope he can simplify his game and see what has made the rest of the d-core so successful without him.