The Pittsburgh Penguins used the offseason to make a few significant changes to their defensive core.
Mike Matheson and John Marino were traded away by the Penguins to bring in Jeff Petry and Ty Smith respectively.
While it is uncertain if Smith will make the lineup right away, Petry is for sure sitting as the second line right defender behind Kris Letang.
A lot of eyes will be on Petry during the 2022-23 season, but what can people expect from him during his first year in Pittsburgh?
If you ask president of hockey operations Brian Burke, Petry is going to bring size and a heavy right-handed shot.
“We’ve been fans of Petry for a long time,” Burke told NHL Network. “Big right shot on the power play. Big kid. For us, it was an upgrade at the position.”
The front office believes he can be a threat on the power play, likely the second unit, againt behind Letang.
At $6.25 million annually, Petry not only brings size and strength but also the most expensive contract on the Penguins defense.
Despite being 34-years-old, Petry has to live up the pay checks; he doesn’t have to become the best blue liner on the squad, but at least make the contract reasonable.
No matter the price, Letang is going to be the best defender the Penguins have to offer, but Petry can be a solid second option.
In his final year with the Montreal Canadiens, Petry scored 27 points (6-21) in 68 games, only four points behind Mike Matheson, the guy he was traded for.
The Penguins aimed to add size during the offseason and Petry brings plenty of that to his game.
Petry stands at 6’3” and has no fear in throwing the body piling up 140 hits in 2021-22.
The veteran defender brings plenty to the table for the Penguins, and if all goes right Petry could slowly turn into a key piece of the defensive core on a winning team.
Make sure you bookmark Inside the Penguins for the latest news, exclusive interviews, breakdowns and so much more!