Would You Take Dustin Penner Back?

Jonathan Willis
March 06 2012 10:17AM

Dustin Penner is having a horrible season with the Los Angeles Kings. Five goals and 13 points in 48 games isn’t the sort of production Dean Lombardi expected when he traded for him, and it isn’t going to earn Penner – in the final year of his contract – good dollars next season.

Should the Oilers try to sign him to a bargain contract?

Penner’s best season came during 2009-10, a trainwreck of a year for virtually everybody on the Oilers. With Ales Hemsky and Nikolai Khabibulin hurt, AHL-calibre ‘tenders in net and Ryan Potulny on the second line, there was a shortage of good news on the team. Dustin Penner’s 32 goals led the Oilers by a mile (nobody else got 20), as did his 63 points (Sam Gagner, with 41, was the only other player with more than 40), and he had a pretty good follow-up season before getting moved to Los Angeles.

There are some other positives. Penner’s still relatively young; he’s not yet 30. He’s a career 12.6% shooter, shooting at a 5.7% clip this year – in other words, his goal-scoring is likely to rebound. Additionally, issues in his personal life have been made public, issues that might have some bearing on his terrible season. That gives some reason to believe he could rebound next season.

On the other hand, a lot of fans didn’t like Penner even when he was the best offensive player in the lineup. Work ethic has always been something that fans and management have identified as an issue – he was Randy Carlyle’s whipping boy in Anaheim, Craig MacTavish had him on a special exercise regimen in Edmonton, and when Dean Lombardi wasn’t criticizing Jack Johnson he found time to toss Penner under the bus too.

Is the risk of getting an impact player on the cheap worthwhile? Or did you see enough the first time around?

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Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, Sportsnet, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
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#101 Gitagrip
March 06 2012, 04:49PM
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edmonton Sux wrote:

@ The beaker

Haha oiler Douche, please dont make fun of my grammar I cant take it no more.

Or is it make fun off ? hhmmm

Hey how close are you to your Grandma you sick nuck!

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#102 vetinari
March 06 2012, 04:56PM
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Big pass on Penner... put our money where we need it: 1.) two top 2/4 defencemen; 2.) quality (and consistent) starting goaltender; and, 3.) a new GM.

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#103 Gitagrip
March 06 2012, 05:00PM
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Penner fits Sather's definition of a reclamation project. Let Glen have him. The east coast air may clear his head.

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#104 Smokey
March 06 2012, 05:02PM
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The Soup Fascist wrote:

Damages to city after riot .... $50 million

Average jail term for rioters ..... 17 months

Number of dive artists, whiners and fart catchers on roster ......23

Number of delusional fans ......... infinite

2nd rate smack coming from a group of fans with ZERO cups in 40 plus years ....... priceless

Just ignore them next time

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#105 Thinker
March 06 2012, 05:06PM
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Absolutely. We should try to get some term as well as value contracts will be essential when we make our run. Advanced stats love the guy, hes big, has hands, and can play in the top 6. You can call him lazy and all that but hes come back from adversity, and silenced all the critics in the past. Also has chemistry with hemsky, and is the same age.Hes a good teamate, leader, and loves edmonton. I would try for 1-2 mil for 5 years but idk if hed go for that.

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#106 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
March 06 2012, 05:12PM
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edmonton Sux wrote:

haha oil fan, or should I say Islanders west, do anything relevant last 5 yrs ?

Oddly enough, the Oilers have the EXACT same number of stanley cup victories as the Canucks in that time frame. Even crazier, the Oilers have the EXACT same number of Stanley Cup final appearances as the canucks since the lockout.

pretty sad when the sh** pile oilers stack up against the mighty canucks in something isnt it?

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#107 steelymac
March 06 2012, 05:16PM
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book¡e wrote:

Maybe - I would want to know more about his impact on dressing room chemistry. If he is not particularly disruptive, then I would be happy to sign him.

He could start next year with a clean slate and something to prove. If he is cheap enough, then its not a big deal if he finds himself on the third line for most of the year.

I liked the Penner trade at the time, but I also really like Dustin Penner as a hockey player.

Great point.The mind set in the room has to change from a 29th place team to a contending team.I think this means its time for Hall and Ebs to lead this team and get away from the oldboys club aka Horc,Hemmer,Penner regime.

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#108 The Soup Fascist
March 06 2012, 05:34PM
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Smokey wrote:

Just ignore them next time

Thanks - figured that out after the 2nd post. Kinda like arguing with the crack-idled "the end is near" guy handing out flyers. Not very productive.

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#109 JackBauer
March 06 2012, 07:15PM
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John,

It disgusts me that a man of your writing skill would even ask such a stupid question.

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#110 Dave Lumley
March 06 2012, 08:17PM
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All for it on a budget contract. Third line minutes along with some power play time plunked in front of the net.

I would especially love the trade of the decade - Penner for Klefblom, Teubert, a second round pick and Penner. Rates right up there with the Thornton trade.

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#111 Kevin
March 06 2012, 08:56PM
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It's this kind of talk that will keep the Oilers a toilet bowl contender for years to come.......

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#112 FastOil
March 06 2012, 09:04PM
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If Klefbom and Teubert become good or better NHL players you could make an argument.

Right now all we know is we lost a big LW that is a hockey player, and we're playing Eager as a result. No gain in toughness, big loss in potential productivity and skill.

If Penner wants to come back cheap, it's not like there are a lot of guys that are available that have his skill set to play opposite Eberle.

Gagner benefited a lot from Penner on his wing.

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#113 Oilcruzer
March 07 2012, 08:15AM
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What does Penner bring that Jones or Petrell or Smyth don't?

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#114 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
March 07 2012, 08:23AM
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Oilcruzer wrote:

What does Penner bring that Jones or Petrell or Smyth don't?

He certainly brings a hell of a lot more then Petrell.

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#115 Smokey
March 07 2012, 11:36AM
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The Soup Fascist wrote:

Thanks - figured that out after the 2nd post. Kinda like arguing with the crack-idled "the end is near" guy handing out flyers. Not very productive.

Im all for fans from other teams reading our site. I`m all for them posting, talking a bit of constructive trash in good taste. Once in while you get a guy making a garbage comment like today, hes ignored, and he never comes back.

I just don`t want this site becoming a garbage site. This is one of the best blogs out there, where people can say their peace, make constructive comments, and have a good read. Just want it to continue.

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#116 ubermiguel
March 07 2012, 05:40PM
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"Would You Take Dustin Penner Back?" No way. Great guy, hope he gets his game back, but the plan should be develop forwards from within. Seems like "value" players get signed when you're ready to contend.

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#117 Gangplank
March 07 2012, 06:03PM
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Oilcruzer wrote:

What does Penner bring that Jones or Petrell or Smyth don't?

Skill, production and an ability to at least measure up in scoring chances and scoring against opposition's top lines.

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