Throughout the off-season, we here at Pens Universe are going to provide you with player profiles that will summarize our opinions on the strengths and weaknesses of each player as well as highlighting their performance this past season, and we'll also include an outlook for the 2010-2011.
by. John Guriel
by. John Guriel
Team-first guy; brings the intensity; gritty; Mr Clutch.
Consistency of production; sometimes the skill/speed just isn’t there; only played 45 games
Max didn’t have the best of seasons this year. Only 7 points and never really got into a grove of playing well for extended periods of time. It is important to note he was hurt much of the year which contributed to his lack of production. The thing about Max is that always seems to brings intensity, grit, and hustle on every shift. It can’t be underappreciated. Max once again exemplified taking it to the next level in the playoffs as well. Talbot netted 6 points in the 13 playoff games, playing well in stretches, even with the top lines. Max also came up with the game winning SHG against Ott in game 4 at a critical time when Ott was storming back.
He does have his own Pens Universe shirt...otherwise, no.
Max needs to be much more consistent this year. A top 6 forward is unlikely because Shero might be targeting a winger in free agency. Without knowing what his role will be its hard to give an accurate outlook, but if Max stays healthy all year I don’t think its out of the question to ask for 20-30 points. Max is a workhorse and plays well in big games and at big times. He also needs to improve his +/- which has been a -9 the past two seasons. Like his faceoff production should be better than the 41% he came in at last year. Max is a great part of the team in the locker room but needs to prove himself on the ice this year or his low salary may make him expendable by seasons end.
Worth his salt?
It is very hard to answer this question about Max. Ray inked Max on the cheap but the naysayers will immediately say NO because he only played in 45 games and had only 7 points. Though as I said, he battled injuries all year and who knows if he was ever 100%. In staying true to his resume, Max pocketed 6 points in only 13 playoff games and cranked out a few more quality commercials in 09/10. I believe that what Max brings to the locker room and the support he gives to Sid and MAF on the road are invaluable on this hockey team. Combine that with what he does on the ice, if I'm Mario, I'm still happy to be signing checks for #25.
Staying with the Pens in 2010-11?
At this point, yes. Max has a contract with the Pens through this year. It will pay him the same $1.05MM as last year. After that, Talbot will be a RFA in the 2011 offseason and must really step it up this season in order to keep his locker at Consol Energy Center past 10/11.