In their brief careers as Penguins, Bill Guerin (above) and Chris Kunitz have cruised with some fairly elite company.
And Ziggy Palffy.
Guerin and Kunitz have averaged exactly a point-per-game in their handful of games with the Penguins. Kunitz has 13 points while Guerin has recorded 10 with Pittsburgh.
While it might be a tad early to begin ordering "13" and "14" banners to hang from the rafters of Consol Energy Center, Guerin and Kunitz are two of 18 players who have averaged a point per game as Penguins.
|Syl Apps, Jr.||495||500||1.01|
That's all fine and dandy, but we're not quite sure what comparing the totals of Guerin and Kunitz in such a relatively small sample of games to the bodies of work of Kovalev or Cullen illustrates. Most of the totals on that list were compiled over the course of seasons full of injuries, dry spells and poor teams. Guerin and Kunitz have simply been on board for a hot streak of games.
A comparison to some more contemporary players is a better gauge. So we took a look at the totals of Guerin and Kunitz and compared them to other players traded relatively close to this season's trade deadline. Here are the 15 best point per-game-averages of players who joined a new team one way or another (trade, waivers, signings, etc.) since the start of the 2009 calendar year:
|Olli Jokinen, Flames||11||8-4-12||1.09|
|Bill Guerin, Penguins||10||3-7-10||1.00|
|Chris Kunitz, Penguins||13||6-7-13||1.00|
|Erik Cole, Hurricanes||11||2-8-10||0.91|
|Antoine Vermette, Blue Jackets||9||5-3-8||0.89|
|Rich Peverly, Thrashers||32||10-18-32||0.88|
|Nik Antropov, Rangers||11||5-4-9||0.82|
|Matt Lashoff, Lightning||5||0-4-4||0.80|
|Sean Avery, Rangers||11||4-4-8||0.73|
|Matthew Lombardi, Coyotes||11||4-4-8||0.73|
|Mathieu Schneider, Canadiens||17||3-9-12||0.71|
|Erik Christensen, Ducks||9||1-5-6||0.67|
|Mark Recchi, Bruins||9||4-2-6||0.67|
|James Wisniewski, Ducks||9||1-5-6||0.67|
|Mats Sundin, Canucks||32||9-12-21||0.66|
Note: All totals are through Thursday's games.
Ultimately, the true value of a deadline deal for a buyer is defined by that team's postseason success. Points alone don't show what you got out of it. The Sharks didn't pick up guys like Travis Moen and Kent Huskins from the Ducks so they could be 20-goal scorers. They needed to add some grit and postseason experience to a skilled roster.
But the Penguins' biggest need at the trade deadline was obviously to find some first- or second- line scoring wingers. So far, that's exactly what Ray Shero has gotten out of these deals.
(Photo: Gene J. Puskar/Associated Press)