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Do Crosby and Malkin even need scoring help?

Sidney Crosby, Evegeni Malkin

Pittsburgh Penguins’ Sidney Crosby, left, and Evgeni Malkin of Russia, are introduced before the the Penguins first home NHL hockey game of the season against the Florida Panthers in Pittsburgh Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2011. Crosby and Malkin did not play in the game. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)


We don’t have to tell you that, when healthy, Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin are two of the most dominating scorers in the NHL. Both players have won MVP awards (Malkin this year, Crosby in 2007), both have won the Art Ross Trophy as the league’s leading scorer (Malkin’s done it twice), and Malkin won the Conn Smythe Trophy in 2009.

We always hear about how the Penguins are in search of a big scoring winger to help these guys out, but do they even need it?

Look at what Malkin did to help James Neal break out last season. With Dallas, Neal was a consistent 25-ish goal per year guy. One season with a fully healthy Malkin and suddenly he’s a 40-goal guy.

It’s hard to judge what Crosby was able to do to help his linemates in 22 games last season, but when he’s been healthy guys like Chris Kunitz and Pascal Dupuis have benefited greatly thanks to having “Sid The Kid” setting them up.

While the Penguins lost Steve Sullivan to Phoenix while they pursued Zach Parise, if Ray Shero opts to go with what he’s got it might be time to give Eric Tangradi a shot to see if he’s all he’s cracked up to be.