Pittsburgh Penguins GM Jim Rutherford is quick to point out that there are multiple ways to win a Stanley Cup in today’s NHL. His team won with speed, but he doesn’t think there needs to be a rush on adding high-end skaters to the lineup.
“There’s more than one way to win,” Rutherford said this week. “When you look at the teams that won over the last three or four years, they’re each different in little different ways. I don’t necessarily think you have to do it exactly the way we did it.”
Plus, it’s not easy adding speed when everybody identifies it as a need.
“It’s not like you can go somewhere and all of a sudden there’s a bunch of guys who have great speed and you go pick them up,” Rutherford said. “When we recognized early last year that we needed to add some speed, I know the list was pretty short when you start looking around.”
But there are qualities of the Penguins' blueprint that are a near necessity to be considered a true Stanley Cup contender, including these five: