Pittsburgh Penguins by the numbers: Conor Sheary

Conor Sheary #43 of the Pittsburgh Penguins. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Conor Sheary #43 of the Pittsburgh Penguins. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /

When the Pittsburgh Penguins brought back Conor Sheary to 5th Ave, it sent a message. That message was one of we know what we need, and this is it.

Weirdly, it almost felt like the Pittsburgh Penguins never wanted Conor Sheary to leave in the first place. He was a victim of cap issues, and that was just the extent of it. However, once gone, you could see and feel a void in the Penguins attack. The Penguins made a mistake, but they fixed it as soon as they realized the error in their ways.

The relationship that blossomed between Sheary and Sidney Crosby was retried with a few other Penguins forwards. Hornqvist had a solid rebound year but didn’t click. Dom Simon couldn’t find the net, and Sheary’s placeholders, Dominik Kahun was leaving all of Pittsburgh scratching their heads. So, on deadline day in February, Jim Rutherford made it right and brought Sheary home.

After his return back to Pittsburgh, he only got to play in eight games, wanting more. At that time, he contributed a goal and three assists. Overall this year, he played in 55 games, struggling with 19 points. He couldn’t get settled in Buffalo, and the Pens couldn’t get situated without him.

Pittsburgh Penguins by the numbers: Conor Sheary

Don’t let those stats full you, Sheary is still an oppressive forward. His game is not one filled with goals and flashiness; it’s one of grinding and doing the dirty work. Coming back from the Sabres, he was the perfect addition next to the Penguin’s future Hall of Famer.

As the season commences into the Stanley Cup Playoffs, there is no doubt that Conor Sheary will be to the right side of Sid once more. ‘Sid’s line’ will also get a boost with Guentzel coming back and most likely playing to the left side of Crosby and Sheary.

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Moving on past the playoffs and into next year, Sheary will face the same issue that saw him leave 5th Ave two years ago. The Penguins are facing cap space issues again, and this time Sheary is up for renewal. His current contract of $3 million and the door should be open for a return. He may just have to be willing to take a hometown deal in order to help out everyone involved.