An article from Pittsburgh Post-Gazette's Jason Mackey had me thinking about what ails the Pittsburgh Penguins, and what the first step to fixing the roster could be.
It became pretty clear when I came across Ryan Reaves' usage, in other words, his ice time.
"His ice time for the past seven games: 3:51, 5:10, 4:56, 6:45, 5:36, 6:00 and 6:21," Mackey outlines.
He has only two shots that have hit the net in those seven games. Sure, he has character and can hit or drop the gloves, but what is he good for beyond that. And since when is that the identity of the National Hockey League these days, or the Pittsburgh Penguins for that matter?
Reaves has a goal and 2 assists in 34 games - the fact that he's maintained his spot on the roster for every single game this season is rather shocking. There are players waiting on the sidelines or in the AHL such as Josh Archibald or Daniel Sprong who deserve chances to prove themselves.
The primary reason for this team's offensive struggles lies in the lack of production coming out of the bottom 6, especially that 4th line. Take out Reaves, put someone who can generate offense, and you have your first step towards getting back into a playoff spot.
Agree or disagree?