Top prospect Eric Tangradi has gone through some learning curves in the early part of Penguins training camp.
Tangradi’s been tentative and frustrated at times regarding his play in camp.
In the Penguins pre-season opener, Tangradi was given an opportunity to play with star center Sidney Crosby.
He didn’t disappoint.
The 6-4, 221 lb winger delivered a number of punishing hits, established a net presence and used his size and strength to control the puck behind the net and in the corners.
As the game devloped, Tangradi began to establish some chemistry with Crosby.
Tangradi assisted on both of Crosby’s goals as the Penguins roared back, scoring four third period goals.
There is no doubt that Tangradi will begin the season in Wilkes Barre. Some people in know, believe he needs at least a year in Wilkes Barre.
But, head coach Dan Bylsma made a very smart decision in playing Tangradi on one of his top two lines.
He needs to make the same move with prospect Luca Caputi on Friday.
*It’s very early but I’ve been getting some wind that there is some concern in the organization regarding veteran defenseman
Jay McKee. We’ve been hearing some of the similar concerns that team scouts had about Daryl Sydor when he struggled in camp.
Hard to evaluate him tonight but any Blues insider will tell you, he has lost a step when it comes to his skating ability.
McKee wasn’t very strong in his own end and breaking the puck out is not his game.
*Management really likes what Ryan Bayda brings to the table. He’s going to have to make his mark on the penalty kill to make this team though.
He did some nice things on the fore-check and his stick is always in the passing lanes on the PK.
*Prospect Joe Vitale who had a very strong rookie tournament, looked a bit over-matched tonight.
2009 1st round pick Simon Despres held his own tonight. Despres was paired with Sergei Gonchar and saw 1st unit power play time.
He made some mistakes like any 18 year defenseman would but it was a good experience for him.
Elusive forward Chris Connor made some things happen in the offensive zone. He scored in the third period and had a few prime opportunities in the first and second period.