Pittsburgh Penguins: 2017-2018 Season Expectations

NASHVILLE, TN - JUNE 11: Captain Sidney Crosby
NASHVILLE, TN - JUNE 11: Captain Sidney Crosby /
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Evgeni Malkin

Evgeni Malkin seems to be one of the most underrated players in the NHL. Last year, the NHL rated their all time top 100 players, which Malkin was left off of. That list is easily a list Malkin should have made. Over the course of his tenured, Malkin has 832 points in 706 games and ranks in the top 15 all time for PPG (points per game average). At 31 years old, Malkin is a two time 100+ point getter and like Crosby, has not seemed to slow down even a step.

PITTSBURGH, PA – JUNE 08: Evgeni Malkin
PITTSBURGH, PA – JUNE 08: Evgeni Malkin /

The Penguins are going to rely heavily on the play and leadership of the three time Stanley Cup Champion in the upcoming season. Malkin will get his share of ice time with the kids on the team, and the way he plays will influence the games of players such as Sprong and Aston-Reese, when they come up.

Last year Malkin scored 72 points last year, but should be in for a bigger season this year. Without a strong third line center Malkin should see more ice time this year. The way he plays on any given day  could change the whole tempo and direction of a game. The man nicknamed Geno is easily the most impactful player in the game today.

Coming into the 2017-2018 season, Malkin could be looking at point totals in the upper 80’s or lower 90’s.