Double whammy: Pens’ Maatta to undergo shoulder surgery as well


This hasn’t exactly been a banner offseason for the Pittsburgh Penguins — and it’s only a few days old.

Following the firing of GM Ray Shero and news that prospect Derrick Pouliot would miss 4-6 months after undergoing shoulder surgery, TSN’s Bob McKenzie reports that another young defensive talent — Olli Maatta — will be sidelined indefinitely following shoulder surgery of his own on Thursday.

Maatta, 19, just wrapped his first full NHL campaign and did it in style, finishing third among rookie d-men in goals (nine) and tied for third in points (29). Maatta also finished fourth among first-year blueliners in minutes played, despite the fact he was the NHL’s 10th-youngest skater this season.

The 22nd overall pick at the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, Maatta — along with fellow ’12 draftee Pouliot — is expected to be a big part of Pittsburgh’s blueline. While it’s unclear exactly how much time he’ll miss following surgery, one wonders if the health of he and Pouliot will force the Pens to re-examine what they do with pending UFAs Brooks Orpik, Matt Niskanen and Deryk Engelland.