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Projecting Penguins players goal totals for 2011-12 season.


With the NHL regular season about to begin, the time is right for predictions that probably won’t be. As dear readers know, every year at this time I post goal projections for Penguins players. Aside from twice nail RW Pascal Dupuis’ total on the mark, I’m almost always way off, as I suspect will be the case this season. Still, this is always a fun exercise – and one that provides Penguins broadcaster Phil Bourque with endless laughs. Submitted for the Ol’29er’s approval, my sure-to-be-ridiculed goal forecast for the 2011-12 Penguins:

Craig Adams (1)

Arron Asham (7)

Matt Cooke (13)

Sidney Crosby (31)

Pascal Dupuis (18)

Deryk Engelland (2)

Dustin Jeffrey (9)

Tyler Kennedy (26)

Chris Kunitz (22)

Kris Letang (12)

Mark Letestu (6)

Ben Lovejoy (2)

Steve MacIntyre (1)

Evgeni Malkin (53)

Paul Martin (4)

Colin McDonald (3)

Zbynek Michalek (5)

James Neal (17)

Matt Niskanen (5)

Brooks Orpik (1)

Richard Park (6)

Jordan Staal (30)

Steve Sullivan (16)

Eric Tangradi (3)

Joe Vitale (8)

Jason Williams (5)


Author: Rob Rossi

Rob Rossi is the lead sports columnist for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. He has been called many names, but “Rossi” is the one to which he most often responds. He joined the Trib in November 2002 and was promoted to the columnist role in July 2014. Previously, he had covered the NHL’s Penguins (2006-14) and MLB’s Pirates (2006), while also working on beats associated with the NFL’s Steelers (2005-06) and the NCAA’s Pitt (2004-06). He has won national and local awards for his coverage of youth concussions and athletes’ charities. Also, he is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association executive committee and the Pittsburgh chapter chair. Raised in Crafton and Green Tree and a graduate of West Virginia University, he has covered a Super Bowl, All-Star Games in baseball and hockey, the NCAA basketball tournament and over 100 Stanley Cup playoff games, including the Cup Final twice. Oh, and his sports reporting has led him to brief chats with Mick Jagger and Bruce Springsteen; so that’s pretty cool. He is a regular contributor on TV with WPXI, Root Sports Pittsburgh and TSN. Also, he is the authorized biographer of Penguins star Evgeni Malkin.


  1. Mike says:

    Wow! Malkin at 53? That’s bold Rob, very bold. I commend you but I’ll go with 42. Staal at 30 is optimistic but much stranger things have happened. Neal at 17 is unfortunately not that crazy. He just looks he’s in a rut. Hope you’re wrong and he at least pots about 22. Kennedy at 26 looks very optimistic to me, and I don’t see any evidence Tangradi will have any goals at all unless he plays 25+ games, although I’m sure games played is partly what that’s based on.

    Everything else I agree with!

  2. Rolph says:

    Looks like Brandon Saad is the real deal, Pens could have chose him in the second

  3. espo33 says:

    If Neal only gets 17 playing with Malkin to start the season that would be disappointing. Who knows when Crosby comes back, but that is not very good.

    Staal is not much of a playmaker, not sure he gets 30 even with Kunitz and Kennedy to start the season.

    If Jeffrey can be healthy by Nov I don’t see them calling up Williams or him getting 5 goals.

    And I think you might be right or a little under on Letestu. The dude can score, but when Crosby comes back and Jeffrey comes back there might not be room for him in the middle. I hope he carve out that 3rd line winger in the years to come.

  4. Aron says:

    305 total goals. That’s a lot.

  5. Robert says:

    I’m with Bourque!

  6. Big Game James says:

    I wonder, how much do the Penguins pay Rob Rossi to do p.r. for them?

  7. Broad Street Bully says:

    My prediction for Jags: 34 goals, 34 assists, 68 points.

    Go Flyboys!

  8. Pal Hal says:

    Anything less than two Stanley Cups in the next two years would be unacceptable. We were supposed to have a dynasty, and I want it now.

  9. zach eckels says:

    wow if malkin scores 53 stall 30 and the kid 31 we should be golden

  10. Peter Puck says:

    My five predictions:
    1. Sid comes back in November, goes out in January.
    2. Jagr will haunt his former teammates.
    3. The Flyers and Capitals will meet in the conference finals.
    4. Many will finally realize that MAF was a wasted draft pick.
    5. Rossi and Kovecevitz won’t utter a bad word about team management.

  11. Flyboy says:

    Jagr was sensational last night!

    Yeah, baby!

  12. Zalapski 33 says:

    Peter and Flyboy, Jagr is a washed up nobody and the Flyers will be a non factor in the conference title, as for the Craps they will just choke again (as they always do with POS Ovechkin). I can easily see the Bruins returning to face off with the Pens (as long as Sid can return and remain healthy) and as for MAF both the Flyers and the Craps would give their left nut to have a goalie 1/2 as good as MAF….MAF is the only reason the Pens made the playoffs last season and he will be a big part of the reason that they return to Lord Stanleys Cup again this year.

  13. Blackblood says:

    @Rolph, interesting math. Please explain how could the Pens have had Saad in the second round when he was chosen 43rd and the Pens picked 54th.

  14. drewww says:

    my one prediction:

    Peter Puck doesn’t know @$%^ about hockey

  15. CyKo says:

    @peter puck (this is way off topic from the thread, but it must be said)

    Why would ANYBODY utter a bad word about the Penguins’ team management?

    The team went:
    23-13-5 after Sid went out (that’s 51 out of 82 possible points)
    15-10-4 after losing both Geno and Sid (that’s 34 out of 58 possible points)

    Fleury’s record was:
    19-11-3 after losing Sid
    12-9-3 without the team’s top two scorers

    fleury averaged 25 min between goals in ’10-’11
    bobrovsky averaged only 23 min between goals in ’10-’11
    I’ll take MAF any day …
    the only starting goalie in the East better is Thomas who averaged 30 min between goals

    that was good enough on both accounts to hold on to a 4th seed in the playoffs
    that was also good enough to tie Philly with 106 points

    pittsburgh suffered well over 300 man games lost to injury
    (60 of those MGL’s came to Pittsburgh’s top two stars in the second half of the season)

    Of Philly’s top 10 point producers:
    all played over 75 games in ’10 – ’11
    combined to miss only 17 games
    Of Pittsburgh’s top 10 point producers
    only 5 played over 65 games in ’10-’11
    combined to miss 194 games

    That is what I call team depth. that starts with great management

    speak not one ill word about the management of this team, nor MAF. When was Philly’s last cup? How many games did Philly win last year after the first round of the playoffs?

    just sayin…. PeterPuck doesn’t know squat about hockey

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