February 28, 2023
The Porch Is Live - Is It time to Fire Hextall? It's Also NFL Draft Time... Almost.

https://www.theporchislive.com/blog/should-hextall-be-fired/ The Hockey Jesus reacts. The NFL draft is here and we weigh in on what we think the Steelers' plan should be. Congrats to The Pitt Panthers Basketball team for cracking the top 25, and we...

Fire Hextall?
The Hockey Jesus reacts. The NFL draft is here and we weigh in on what we think the Steelers' plan should be. Congrats to The Pitt Panthers Basketball team for cracking the top 25, and we unveil DG's present for us as the Pirates begin spring training. Join us on the porch!

Be sure to SUBSCRIBE to ThePorchIsLive.com for updates and more!

Thanks for reading, and let us know what you think... email us at OGSPORTSPORCH@GMAIL.COM and join us every Monday at 7:30 PM Eastern on Facebook Live or YouTube.  You can also catch the podcast on iHeart or anywhere you listen to podcasts!

It, You know what? I just realized I had muted the microphone so never mind. We're going to start that all over again. Whoo. We are back on the back porch. There you go.
After a week hiatus in sunny Key West Florida. Key West Florida. I do have some I thought I had some pictures for it but they're not showing they're not showing up in my Email. Show those pictures. Maybe we'll bring them back. Um but listen, thanks for being here guys. First thing I have to do this week is I have to thank our sponsor Lauren Klein, the Pittsburgh Property Diva, Pittsburgh Property Diva.
com. Thank you so much. Thank you Property Diva. Absolutely and I also I also want to thank thank you if you're listening on American Busker iHeartRadio iHeartRadio, a 50 million registered users, 2000 devices, 250 platforms, and I also remind you that you can find us. This going to be big tonight because Steve did a little writing. You can find us on The Porch Is Live. com, The Porch is Live.
com. The Porch is Live okay and here's what I'm going to do. I'm going to I'm going to throw this blog post up in our comment right now and that way you guys if you're if you're listening or you're watching you'll have an opportunity to give it a once over but we are going to get we're going to do that later on in the show. In the program. In the program and we're going to talk some baseball tonight.
Whoo. What? And the reason we're going to talk baseball is because there's a little surprise near the end of the show. So. Wow. Uh and it's good to see one of our biggest fans. So, hopefully he will announce his presence and then we'll get we'll to the surprise. You got me sitting on the edge of my seat. We'll get to the surprise. So the the first thing we want to do tonight though however is it's NFL Combine time.
It's about has it started or is it maybe tomorrow? I think it starts tomorrow. Something like that. Okay so obviously you know the Steelers need stuff at the draft and they sure do. Uh I'm going to I'm going to leave this off and I'm going to tell you what I think and it I'm I'm probably not going to change this and Who are you infatuated with? Who are you in love with? Which prospect? I have I I offensive line okay? The big boys.
A guy named Sakorski from Northwestern. Oh why do you want that guy? Because his grandfather was Bart Starr's left tackle and this guy's entire life was built on playing left tackle. He actually said he would punt if asked to do it. And I and and they're saying he should go eighth. Why didn't he go to Alabama. I don't know. Oh, because he was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois.
He was the number one football prospect in Illinois and he committed to Northwestern because he wanted to stay home. That would be like the number one prospect from Aquipa committing to go to Pittsburgh. He's a great football player. Now, they're going to have to trade up to get him. How does he going to be there? How does he do in a phone booth? He's not.
So, that's that's what I'm going to go. You guys take it from there.
So that's the guy you're locked in on. I I I think they should trade up to get him. Well yeah so they would obviously have to trade up but he's going number eight. They have draft. Well that's his projection. They don't think he's going to be there at number seventeen. Sure. Right. Right.
Uh for me I think either go offensive line. Hold on. Wanna interrupt you. DG is in the house. EG in the house.
EG you know you need to stick around for this whole show alright? Alright anyway go ahead. Um yeah I mean for me if I'm the Steelers with my number one selection I am either taking an offensive lineman or a quarterback. Mhm. Um and I know they don't have a lot of luck with cornerbacks. But it doesn't mean that you can't get it right this time around.
We got really we have different people pulling the the strings now. So I I kind of look it as a clean slate. So I know I know Steve is not excited about Joey Porter Junior. Um I actually really like him a lot. Um there's also a the probably the best corner is a guy named Devin Witherspoon from Illinois. Yeah. Um but he's probably going to go around like you know number you know somewhere between eight and twelve type of thing maybe even six.
Um and there's a couple good corners. So you know there'll be four or five taken if not more in the you know in the first round so you know I I I think there's good players to get. Uh Brad Trombley is in the house. He says good evening gentlemen. Uh Melissa Czechchio is here and I she keeps showing up. If she's sending stars, thank you.
I can't tell from here but anyway, what say you Steve? Uh I think Mark and I are sympathico here. I agree. I think they need to focus on the offensive line. I don't think they need to move up. I think there's plenty enough offensive line talent to be able to to be able to just pick where they are and get a good good enough offensive line.
Um I actually wouldn't mind them seeing the offensive line two times in a row but I get it. They probably do if they want to get a good starting quarterback. They're going to have pick a quarterback either in the first or second round. My the guy that I'm looking for is Kaylee Ringo out of a quarterback out of Georgia. I think I think he's a really good cover quarterback and I think he can I think he can bring home the bacon at the quarterback position.
I guess it all depends on on who's available and that's the thing about the draft. You just don't know who's going to be available until they actually pick so. Right and and a lot a lot can change too with you know and 40 times and stuff like that. I I mean I saw some mock drafts that have Ringo going anywhere from like you know seventeen to thirty.
Right. So then it's possible they can even get him in the second if they if if things fall and I I'd rather see that happen honestly. I'd rather them get get you know somebody who's ranked high in the in in the offensive line and then if he falls to them in the second round great take him.
And if he doesn't then you know just go best available you know offensive linemen again I think their needed offensive line is that great yeah and I that's the thing it that that the history of the Steelers drafting quarterbacks lately has not been great and that's not to say that a Joey Porter Junior you know wouldn't fit the bill but honestly you've got a you've got a a young quarterback who is arguably still a rookie you're hoping that he's the future of your franchise left tackle is the position and you gotta what do you want? You want to you can patch a secondary together, okay? The the quarterbacks they had this year were serviceable.
They did alright and you gotta bring in a guy who's young with a young offensive line who everybody is talking about is a football player. Uh I just think they need to trade up for this. It's worth it. Uh Robert Whitney has a comment. He says, do you think they trade for Jaylen Ramsey? No, they're not going to trade no they're not going to trade for Jaylen Ramsey they're not going to they're not going to use that much cap space on the defense he would he would he would he would he would be way too expensive for them I mean he would he would definitely plug right in at quarterback you know the other position I was looking at too I think and it depends on what they do with their linebackers would be inside linebacker position right but once again you have to make a decision about Devin Bush and whether you're going to bring back Miles Jack so so I mean those are two players where if you bring them both back then clearly you don't need anybody I don't see how Devin Bush comes back though but I think the probably bring Miles Jack back that's my guess I I I agree I agree with you I I just I look at it as you're build you're basically starting over right now okay you've got a defense that has some star players on it that are all over the map as far as age goes okay you you're starting over with a base a new offensive line a new rookie quarterback third year running back young wide receivers you have to sure up that line and protect that quarterback if Kenny Pickett is going to have any chance at all to develop and mature and become the quarterback of the future this is the year that he has to do it we all know that right we all know that so your your first your first concern has to be protecting him and yes the offensive line nobody got injured last year somebody's going to get injured this year yes the offensive line played better last year than they did the year before you gotta put an anchor on that line that's the way I see it and in this case you have some draft capital because of the Chase Claypool trade you have some draft capital get up in the draft trade up get that guy now one of the other things that I was listening to today Uh actually on I disagree with that though because I think you need quantity as well.
Thanks Melissa for that comment. I I I agree. I agree. So Mike Tomlin said a couple years ago you know because we have Omar Khan and Andy Weidle right? Mhm. And Mike Tomlin in the draft room. Couple years ago 20 2-1 draft. Mike Tomlin was asked who has the final say in the draft room? And he basically said Mister Rooney has the final say? That's what he What do you guys think about that? Well, I don't know.
I mean, I I think that maybe mister Rooney is like a tie breaker if they're really at a stalemate. That well, that's what he said. He said, Rooney has the final say.
Is that a good thing or a bad thing? I mean look Rooney's only job is running the Steelers. I mean I I I don't do anything else so he should know as much as they do. Right? I I think Tomlin's I think I think Tomlin's actually lying when he says that to be honest with you.
Calling Tomlin a liar. Well here's why I'm saying here's why I'm saying he's a liar because Rooney's Rooney's not in the he's not he's not in the draft room. I mean he he's not there making the decisions lies. Like he might set the priorities like saying go out and get an offensive lineman or I'm I want an offensive lineman the first three picks and I want to I want a linebacker and I I want to get another shiny toy.
He might be saying that but he's not saying who to pick. Right. I agree. Uh honestly when it comes down to seeing who who's who's who's picking. My guess is it's gotta be Tomlin who's making the final decision. You know I think Omar Khan is there to say hey this guy will fit nice in our in our draft capital for the next three or five years.
Weidle's there. He's got his whole he's got his whole staff that's saying this guy's top of the list. He's the one creating a list with Tomlin but Rooney's not going to be the guy making the picks but he might set a priority for positions potentially. Rooney's probably the most hands-off owner that I know of. I mean, he's not going to be that guy who's going to interject himself in a draft.
There's just no way. And and and that that that's in direct contradiction to what Mike Tomlin said. He said, He has the final word. He's involved at the Combine. He does a lot of research on the players himself. You know. I don't believe it. I don't believe that for a second. I don't believe it for a second. I don't. Skeptical.
Skeptical. I I don't I don't believe it either. I I think that was just something that was said to kind of take heat off of somebody. Maybe he was trying to protect the no himself I think. Maybe. Yeah. Yeah. Alright. So quarterback rankings came out the starting quarterbacks in the NFL this week and Kenny Pickett was ranked as the 27th best I'll start it off by saying it's not surprising yeah I mean he wasn't the absolute worst but you know look at his body of work well it's thirty-two teams right it's pretty far down yeah well yeah but I'm not surprised but I mean I I mean you know but but it it I'd almost put it it's the grade is really incomplete you know we don't really know we'll have a good idea of what he is by the end of year two.
Yeah. Yeah. I agree. How about you? Yeah I I agree with that. I think he's better than twenty-seventh. Do I think he's fifteen? Absolutely not. Do I think he's better than Andy Dalton? Absolutely I think he's better than Andy Dalton. Um so I think those rankings are a little biased towards you know maybe the way the offensive scheme's working and we know that's not going to change. So I think I think I think it's a little low for him where he is now because actually you know after he threw all those interceptions in the first what three or five games he actually got better at protecting protecting the ball and not throwing interceptions so I think he showed some growth there throughout the season and their offense is impredicated on him throwing for 325 yards, so I mean that's just not who he's going to be but he does have to be better in the fourth quarter he does have to show a little bit more grit in being able throw of the ball across the middle and not throwing interceptions for that rank to go up in my opinion.
Well and and and that plays right into what I was saying about the draft. So the only way to enable him to be able to do that is to is to have that anchor on the offensive line. I digress. So Robert is thinking ahead and he's playing right into our hands here. What kind of backup QB do you think they would bring in being as Mason and Mitch are both goneers.
Now Mitch is under contract for next year. He's not necessarily a goner not necessarily and no he's gone he's gone you think so well here's why he's gone because he's not going to want to take a pay cut and he'll have to take a pay cut the Steelers are going to say we're not going to pay you that money to be a backup quarterback even though they can afford to they're going to say that money is better spent elsewhere so what they can do is they can just release him and then nobody's going to sign him for that but if he wants to play hardball and he wants to leave then he'll just say no I'm not taking a pay cut and then they'll they'll just drop it.
That's going to happen. Steve, so this this plays into something you mentioned before the show when we were goofballing around about Carson Wentz being released by the Commanders and could he be a backup here? Look, Carson Wentz isn't going to take less than Mitz Trubisky got to be a backup. So, he's never coming here and who's going to pay Trubisky? What's he getting? $8 million dollars a year? Mm hmm. Who's going to pay him $8 million dollars a year? Nobody.
Right. I I I mean I don't think anybody is. That's my point. That's why they they're going to try and negotiate that down to like four or 5 million. Okay. So, So then he would be back. No he would probably. Because he's not going to take it.
And then what he would do is he would take a $5 million dollar deal in a place where he thinks I could potentially end up starting halfway through the season. Yeah or or where he he won't be lied to about being the starter. He knows he'll be the backup but he's not going to do that for Pittsburgh after after what we did to him last year.
By the way the answer to the question is Josh Dobbs. Josh Dobbs is the answer to to Rob Whitney's question. Yeah and and DG. Right right. DG chimes in and says and and and I think you're right about that too. There's been a lot of talk about him coming back here. Um he's a capable backup. He knows the offense. DG I read where Rudolph was open staying in Pittsburgh.
I I I think he did he did make some comments about where he said he's going to keep the door open. And Amy chimes in. Carson Wentz stinks. Um he does. He does. Yeah he does. He was great at one point time. He does. Yeah. So, you know, I I I think that's kind of influx but but again, to me, these these are things that are secondary.
You worry about these things after you, you know, after you draft, after you get your offense set, and all that kind of stuff. Yeah, but they do have to make decisions about, you know, restructuring Mitchet's contract if they want to keep him or they have to jump him soon, you know. So, those things are kind of more dynamic than you just wait and see.
You're like, you need to get settled before the draft really. So so Robert says they could try and trade him for a late pick and I just saw on Facebook a few minutes ago. Mason is definitely leaving. Okay so you know there could be some updates for that. Thanks Robert for being here in this comment. Facebook isn't exactly the best source. It's not? It's not we're on Facebook.
We're on Facebook. Come on now. Don't shoot us in the first one. Good Lord. Um okay. So moving on here. We I'm I'm going to I'm going to switch these topics because I think this is one we're going to do real quick. Uh we want to give a shout out to Pittsburgh, the men's basketball team. They cracked the top twenty-five. They're they're tops in the ACC right now.
They got one more game going into Notre Dame. Uh and the tournament. Um it's you know the names. Virginia. North Carolina.
Virginia. Um right now Miami is I think in second place in the division.
North Carolina or in it? Yeah. Are they just really bad all of a sudden? Well no no more right? Right right. And then no more Roy Williams replaced by Hubert Davis. Right. Right. Some of the programs are on the downturn. Well and they beat North Carolina. Yeah. Yeah. I mean they're still good you know they're good programs but here's the thing about Pittsburgh.
Here's the thing about Pittsburgh. Okay. This this to me is shaping up. This is the first time they've been ranked since two thousand and sixteen. Mhm. And this thing is shaping up to me to be another classic you know like they are going to you know who knows what's going to happen maybe they make the tournament looks like they're a pretty good shot to make it right now oh they should make it a foot 25th rank well well they got one more game to go and they got the ACC tournament to do so you know if they come out as ACC champs then yeah they're definitely in but the thing about it is you know is this going to be a one hit wonder okay because this was for lack of a better way of putting it cobbled together and this whole transfer portal thing for me I am not huh cobbled cobbled good work cobbled I I am not an expert on how the transfer portal works at all as a matter of fact this year I'm going to study a little bit more and figure it out but to me the transfer doing that no not worth it no No.
Well, I don't mean I don't mean it. It just means you can go wherever you want. You don't have to wait. You know, it's just just like how a coach can go somewhere. Now, so can students. So, that's my point. That's my point. So, are you really, is Pittsburgh really putting a program together or is this just a result of the transfer portal to take nothing away from the coaching and the players and all of that but now it becomes more of a free for all and what we what you really want to see in college basketball and college football is you want them to their recruiting in order.
You want them to put together teams that year in and year out and that's just not going to happen. Well to be honest I I think college basketball has been down as a whole for the last several years simply because there's no continuity of play because the best players in the league are one and done. They just play one year and they're gone.
And they get it they get drafted. Right. So it's you know I mean everybody loves the tournament because it's fun and it's exciting. Right? Um and usually yeah usually you know it's a big team that usually is there at the end look at Kansas or somebody like that Kentucky you know those types of schools but Michigan State always in the final four yeah, but you know but the bottom line is I don't think anybody really thinks that the it it's really hard to have a quality sustaining program at this point I mean your your only chance is to have a great coach who really recruit and you know all the best players are going to want to go there so like you know now that is gone I mean you know Duke you know the name as the years go by will fade it will you know and they'll become just another team yeah you know and probably the same thing with North Carolina and you know but then something else will happen that'll be surprising like you know Arizona will hire some great coach and they'll win the championship one year and so they'll be good for 10 years you know you just never know what's going to happen.
Well the only thing I the only thing I have to say about Pittsburgh is it is exciting this year. I mean they they have they have 20 wins. You know whether they cobbled whether they cobbled together a team through the transfer portal or or they just have good talent now. That's that's good for Pittsburgh. Um I think the thing is like the ACC talent is generally down so that's that's an issue.
That's why they're not that's why they're just basic got ranked in the top 25 because all the teams they play against aren't very good and they're they're out of conference schedule wasn't very difficult to begin with so they do they they do play Notre Dame I think either tonight or tomorrow night supposedly if they beat Notre Dame and they're supposed to beat Notre Dame Handley like they're going to be in the tournament like it's Lock but if they lose to Notre Dame then they play at Miami and Miami is pretty good if they lose both of those and they lose in the ACC tournament right now they're projected to be like an eight or nine seed they probably wind up getting the dreaded 12 seed and and and actually a twelve seed's good to be the 12 seed against the five seed but you just don't know and to Mark's point when you get into the tournament it doesn't matter they're not necessarily a lock but my guess is they'll beat Notre Dame they'll be in the tournament my guess is they'll probably win two or three games in the ACC tournament and lose the like Virginia in the semi-finals or the finals or Miami in the semi-finals or the finals.
They'll be fine. They'll be in the tournament. They'll be an eight or a nine seed, maybe a six seed if they're lucky if and you just play it out from there and nobody knows what's going to happen. But I agree with you. They probably either lose in the first or second round. My guess is they will make it through the first round but they'll lose in the second round.
Well my guess is a nine seed and they upset the seed advance one round and then unfortunately Alabama's just too much and they go down. There you go. UAB. UAB. You heard it from basketball Moses himself. So but regardless regardless congratulations to the Pittsburgh Panthers. Uh one of the greatest names of anybody in the world plays on their team. Federico Federico. It's a great name.
Yep. Yep. Yep. You you can't get it wrong. No. You can't you can't. It's a from now on I'd like you to call me Chris Chris. Alright. We're Christopher Christopher. How about that one? Steve Steve. Steve Steve. Mark Mark. Alright. How about how about how about crisscross? Nah no no no.
Jump. Jump. Criss cross to make you jump.
Okay so thanks for being here. You can catch us on The Porch Is Live. com. Thank you for listening on American Busker iHeartRadio. If you do that and remember please subscribe to the Sports Porch Podcast on iHeartRadio app, Apple Podcast, Google, Spotify, or anywhere you get your podcast. Give us a follow, a subscribe, and please leave a review. Would really appreciate that. We're going to move on to something right now. Steve's like He's Pointing to the Porch is Live.
Hey listen the Penguins the Penguins I'm going to put that on the ticker right now Fire Hextall really the Hockey Jesus pens his thoughts on the blog and before he opens his mouth I'm going to put that in the comments again right now I want you guys to see this Steve became an actual sports journalist and he actually had a lot of great things to say this is a perspective I'm going to intro this then I'm going to let Steve take it way.
Everybody knows that at the game the other night against Edmonton, they got their clock cleaned and the crowd was chanting firehack stall and that set off a storm of opinions all over Pittsburgh, on the radio, in the newspapers, in the blogs, on the internet. Fire this guy, fire this guy, fire this guy. So, Steve and I had a discussion where I said, do you have any thoughts on this? Do you want to write a post for the Sports Porch for the Porches Live. com. He said, sure, I'll do that and I really appreciated what I thought was an evolution of thought So, with that being said, I'm going to add that post up there and Steve, please take take us through your thoughts.
On Hextall.
Well, I do love the chant by the way. Fire Hextall. Mm hmm. Fire Hextall. Yeah, you see that in in in hockey a lot. They do stuff like that. They do. It's a great chant though. I mean, you know, it just it kind of flows really easy. I can see how the fans would have gotten into that. Look, when you're losing to Edmonton. By the way, Edmonton Oilers are really good team.
They're they're going to be a be a force to be reckoned with in the Western Conference. A very good fast team and Pens just couldn't score on their goalie and they just took it to us but you know when when when the game's over and you're looking at garbage in front of you you have to you have to respond somehow. Clearly there the fans aren't going to be against the players on the ice.
They love the players on the ice. They've been with them for 16 years right? So you know they like Sullivan too so where do you go? You go right after the GM. So here here was here was my thoughts on on the GM. Like I wanted to do I want to do an analysis of of of Ron Hextall as a GM, right? And and was he is he a good GM or is he a terrible GM? The bottom line on Hextall is when he was in Philly and and Mark can talk to this too.
He was eh he was okay. He took a playoff team and he made them kind of a playoff team some of the time. And and from from what I can what what I understand about him is that basically his thought process is that he likes to keep players once he signs them and he just sticks with them. Now, if you got guys like Crosby and Malkin and LaTang, that can be a good thing but the problem is is he likes all his players.
So, you know, when when they got rid of Kappanin, I thought that that was kind of like one of those things where it's like, oh wow, he cut Kapanin after he gave him that con contract. So, maybe Hextall's changing the way he's thinking but I don't think so. I think I think when it comes down to it, FS group wanted to hire a GM who basically would hire all the talent back and they would have a scapegoat and I think Hextall became the scapegoat.
That being said, I think he's done some really dumb things. Like, I think he should have never signed Carter that contract. Kapmanin was another contract. It was terrible. Danton Heinen and Brock McGinn inexcusable as far as I'm concerned. That you didn't need to bring those guys back. Like, we need to bring up talent from Wilkesbury the little that we do have to at least give them a shot.
And that's what's going to give this team a spark on the third and fourth line. And that's kind of where I came in. So basically I said yeah and by the way I don't think he's done anything in the drafts to to make the team better for the future. And they keep giving away their draft picks. I think they only have three for three or four this year.
But they do have all of them for 20 twenty-four. Now who knows? They may trade all of those in the next few days because there's talk of Jeff Chikren from from Arizona and that would cost them both their first round pick for next year and the year after. I think that would be a mistake but Chicken is would would plug in really well with LaTang on the first line because he is a left-handed defenseman so you have to weigh that like do you want to wait three years to get the guy that you draft or do you bring up Owen Pickering who they drafted last year? Maybe he's a guy that you plug in there.
So it's a difficult decision but in the end I said screw it fire Hextall and I joined in in the chant. Yes you did. Does that mean Hextall can save it? The answer is no he can't. Um what I think was really interesting Steve and I'll I'll take the article down now. Um and by the way Yo Kerry shows up of course.
Um what's up yo? Um what I think is really interesting and this was the perspective that that you gave to me and and I was talking with Mark before the show and and was one of those things where you know sports radio and the internet just lit up with this whole Hextall thing and everybody was jumping on the bandwagon Fire Hextall because of the things you talked about.
The bad contracts the the the the spot they're in. I mean they're stuck. You know they're basically stuck. And we all you know we could go in all the reasons why we actually have. Um but the the the interesting thing that you brought up was that Rotherford resigned in the middle of the pandemic and it was completely unexpected. Yeah. And the Penguins were kind of left hanging and now I don't know if that means that Hextall was a warm body because when you go back and you look at his tenure in Philly and Mark can speak directly to this and he actually did when they hired Hextall but when you look at his tenure in Philly, it wasn't good.
No. You know, it wasn't good. They ended up in the basement after he destroyed the team and for being a fan favorite in Philly as a player he didn't leave town as a fan favorite after he was a GM but of course that happens in Philly all the time so yeah it was supposed to be funny so Steve thinks it's hilarious yeah yeah so but I just thought it was a great perspective and that they were forced to make a decision on the fly that they didn't think they were going to have to make so I I I don't really blame the ownership group for this situation I I do think Hextall is is very inept and and and does not really have I don't want to say that that they say he has no idea what he's doing come on the guy's a GM in the in the NHL he he knows hockey okay he does understand contracts but he was also put between a rock and hard place so Schwab you've been quiet this whole time so you have some history with him yeah I I mean look he he came to the Flyers after I don't believe I'm not sure if he was the GM referee was the assistant GM when the LA Kings won the Stanley Cup Maybe he was the assistant.
I think he was the assistant. He was the assistant. He was the assistant. Yeah. So, we thought, okay, you know, here's a guy who's been learning, you know, under a good GM, how to put together Stanley Cup champion. So, made sense to do the hire and and at first, he made sense because we like the approach he was taking like instead of just, you know, bringing in a couple new all-stars and trying different combinations every year, he was saying like look let's just kind of stick with it.
We'll you know we're going to be not so good but we're going to keep drafting and we'll get you know good young players who eventually form a really good team. Um and his drafting has been average at best. Um there were a lot of players that he selected. Um that are not as good as players who were selected shortly after. Right? So the planned in work and when the upper management wanted him to fire his hand selected coach he refused to do it.
So that's why he was that's why he was let go. Uh so you know yeah he's done nothing spectacular you know he he hasn't gotten you out of any bad contracts he hasn't you know made any trades to to get a really good player or make a trade up in the draft he hasn't drafted anybody particularly plucking somebody kind of out of nowhere which a good GM should be able to do he's just been mediocre at best and you know I think you know with the with the Penguin And I think the the tough thing for the Penguins is is the Penguins really and this has been this way I'd say like for the last two years the Penguins have basically have had a choice to make.
It's keep your core star players intact and keep trying to win or get rid of them and you know really stink again for a couple years and rebuild through the draft and I think the Answer to that is almost always you know rebuild again through the draft because it's hard to let go of those star players. I mean maybe you keep Sidney Crosby but you let Malcolm and LaTang and you know those guys go.
But they just haven't. They just decided to you know repay you know renegotiate deals with their star players and other star players are still pretty darn good. But it doesn't leave a lot of room to sign other players and it also stunts any kind of growth and develop you're going to get from any young players because they're not going to be able to come up or at least play meaningful minutes on a good line.
Um so that's why they're kind of in the spot where they are where they're you know kind of a you know they'll probably make the playoffs but they're going to be like a seven or an eight seat.
Right? So. Yeah well said because right now you have six teams that are definitely making the playoffs. The Bruins the Leafs, Tampa Bay, Lightning, Carolina, the Devils, and the Rangers and you got two spots left right and you got the Sabres actually you have the Islanders at 69 points the Pens at 67 points and the Sabres at 66 points Detroit and Florida and the Caps all at 64 points so I mean there's a lot of hockey still yet to be played but those are basically the players the interesting thing is is the Capitals are are already selling off their team they are they they already got rid of Warnloff and always Forget the other guy's name but it'll come back to me and and and they're probably I heard that the dreaded Wilson is on the trading block also.
So so that's interesting. I mean but they have like nine free agents Washington does. So they have to recuperate some of that in draft picks because they know they're probably going to lose six of the nine. I think they're trying to keep Lar Zeller. I think that's one guy they want to keep but but yeah And the Devils are on their way up. Um I mean I think they're a good example of a team that like got younger and better through the draft you know with Hughes and with that Nico Kerscher.
Yeah. Um you know those are top five draft picks. Yeah and they got other guys that they got it trade deadline like Paul Mary and and guys like that. So so I think I think you can do it with the core group. It's just that some of these secondary signings have not worked out like Carter and and the guys that I mentioned. And on top of that their unwillingness to play the talent that they do have down Wills Gray I know it's not that great but look you gotta at least try it because if it's no good then then you know just get rid of them start again but I I think they can I think that's the plan the plan is Chris you hit it you you hit the nail on the head what Hextall had to do was impossible to do you can't build a new team and make the playoffs like that doesn't work like it's it's almost one or the other now you can keep core players and actually some of the some of the contracts they signed were just so long they have a longer window so it's not like this is the year they have to do it Sid signed for two more years after that I think he's he could be the first one to go to be honest with you which would probably be the worst thing that could happen because if Sid goes in two years then what are you left with you're almost left with nothing yeah and and unless of course you know you get like four number one draft picks for Sid and a good young player who can who can fill in and and learn the role but it'll be interesting to see what happens in the trade deadline and Mark this was my this is what I think that need that I think the Penguins need to go get a goalie you think the Flyers would be willing to get rid of Carter Hart and send them to Pittsburgh Probably not.
Probably not. Um they might be willing to get rid of this Ursen guy.
Interestingly enough I mean he got off to this great start. He was only like I don't know one of like only a couple goaltenders to ever start off six and oh. Something like that and yeah six and oh. You think he's really good. Now he did have a bad outing his last outing. Like I think he gave up like five goals or something. Yeah. Um but yeah I I would doubt it. I mean I think they probably think that Carter Hart's their their best player at this point.
The guys that I think that are going to be moved. Uh they're going to move James Van Marine style. Yeah JVR. We don't want to I mean let's say I I certainly could help a third line though. Yeah he could but what are you going to have to give up? I mean today Sam Lafferty formerly of this parish who went to Chicago went to Tampa Bay or I'm sorry went to Toronto for a first round pick. Sam Lafferty.
Right yeah.
I mean I mean I I don't think you want to give up a first round pick for JVR I I think he would help but get him for less than that I really do how about if we trade Carter's for him alright well we're not going to work out over trades right here I do want to give Nick Anderson's comment in I've been trying to get it up the whole time he's he's watching us on YouTube he says come on Pittsburgh make sure you subscribe on YouTube thank you for being there DG just says for the Pens to go far will need to snap out of his funk.
He's not been nearly as sharp as he's been in the past. Um by the way, we did have a goal the other night. Teddy Blueger got his first goal in 29 games. Yeah, that's true. And I want to remind everybody that the Hockey Jesus preaches on the podcast after every Penguins game. So, please subscribe to the Sports Sports Podcast on the iHeartRadio app. Uh Spotify, Apple Podcast or Google or anywhere you podcast.
So, thanks a lot for that. Um let's move on real quick here. Uh look, it is spring training, okay? Uh. Yes. The Pirates. Cutch is back. We'll have more to say about that and we we are going to talk a little bit of baseball this year because of the buzz coming on. I happen to think and we're not going to debate that this tonight because we have something very special that's going to happen here Uh I just happen to think that the Pirates are going to be better this year and that's all I'm going to say while Steve cracks up but what I want to do right now is I I I received a box in the mail.
I actually received a package in the mail because you know it was coming. No, I had no idea. A couple days ago, okay? So, I got this Email that said your UPS package has been delivered and I thought, oh my god, my wife bought another set of hand towels, you know? Yeah. And so I got the package And it and it says to the sports porch crew. The sports porch crew.
That's us. I thought oh god. And then as I started to open it I thought I should probably listen to it to make sure it's not ticking. You know what I mean? And then I should probably smell it to make sure there's nothing unsavory. No anthra. No. No. So so here's here's the package. Here's the package. Now see this is why Steve should have been here tonight because.
No. No. Because I want to stay away from all foreign packages. Yeah. Well, I already I I I know what's in it.
See something say something. I I I I tested it. I tested it. Okay so you you you would have been you would have been safe. Um let's see here. Uh Nick just says I love getting comments in. Nick says thanks guys. Thanks for streaming. You're welcome. Um so I I I just I just had to do that. So I I opened the package up.
Okay. I'm not going to let Mark see it because there was a letter in it. Alright. So at first I thought it was hate mail. But then I realized it wasn't a bomb. So I'm read I'm going to read this letter and then we're going to then we're going to pull the the packages out so and then then we'll let you know. Dear Sports Porch crew, in honor of the start of another MLB Spring Training, I figured that I'd add to the set by sending a metal baseball back mug for each of you with your favorite team's logo.
That is awesome. While two are obvious as to who they were meant for, I know that Steve is a hopeless romantic when it comes to in in parenthesis nutting selling the Pirates and he knows a winning season is just around the corner. No I don't. In the event that Steve probably finds that he got the boobie prize and you know when we were down in Fort Lauderdale there was a boobie prize down there.
Remember that? Oh yeah boobie head. Yeah. Yep yes. I couldn't get that picture to email. We'll get it next week. Um In the event that Steve probably feels that he got the boobie prize, I added a little something inside his mug that might come in handy should the Pirates season take its usual shape. Also, if the Penguins aren't careful, Steve may need more than a few old fashions to cheer him up.
In any event, I hope that you guys enjoy the mugs and that you had a good week off. As always, thanks for the entertaining banter and keep up the good work. I'll catch you next time on the porch. David AKA DJ avid sports porch fan. We love you David. Alright so DG.
First of all DG is the man.
I am going to hand Mark his and he can unveil it and show it. That's sweet. There's your top right there. That's actually really sweet. Yeah. That's really nice. Yeah. Fight and fills. There you go. Fight. There you go. Nice. Look, it's not showing up because you're fat right as well. Uh And then of course of course everybody knows I am a hopeless let's just do it this way. I'm a hopeless Orioles fan but I love it. God I hope mine isn't a Pirates. Please. I love this.
Swig for the fences. 20 ounce original. And Steve.
Steve you're going to have to we're going to have to unveil this with you here.
Steve. Oh no.
Buckos. That is cool. Oh no. It is cool. Pittsburgh Pirates. But but in there.
Tissues in there. You got a little something extra. Although you're going to like that. Oh I didn't get any of that. No. No. We should complain more about our you you got not all you got holy are you seeing what he's pulling out? Yeah I'm going to show him. I'm going to show. But I think it I think it's booze. And I got a lot of it. Not one. Crown Royal Very nice. Yes. Not two. Yes. Not three. It's going to take more than that to get me through a season.
But four.
Four might get me through the first week David. Thank you so much. That's very nice. That reminds me of that. I think it was actually Carrot Top. Mark's favorite comedian that did this. I'm a giant. I'm a giant. I'm a giant. So anyway. Anyway listen DG I think you're still watching. And if you are I I just gotta tell you from the bottom of my heart it was an incredible surprise.
I'm thankful you didn't send a bomb. Um but these things are great. Uh I'm going to I I don't drink but I will drink lots of coffee out of this and on occasion. Uh DG's been with us basically since the beginning. And can't wait to meet him next time. He he he swore the next time I'm down in Palm Beach. You know he's going to have to told him I'd take him out to dinner but DG thank you so much from the bottom of my heart and I know these guys thank you too.
So we love the fact that you're part of this. Uh I want to thank everybody right now for listening on American Busker iHeartRadio and please encourage you to subscribe to the Sports Sports Podcast on the iHeartRadio app or anywhere you get your podcast and I also want to encourage you to leave us a review. DG does have a comment. I probably should have sent some hand house.
I hope you guys enjoy. I just wanted to add a little more fun. You are always fun GG and you are always welcome and so with that being said guys, I think that is it. We are out until next week.
Anything else you gotta say? Bang. Bang.
Bang. Steve's going to go drink. Alright guys, take it easy.