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Insider Only Not Buying it? Kennedy’s agent says focus is on reaching deal with Pens

By TIOPS Staff
Veteran agent Steven Bartlett hit the airways this afternoon, appearing on 937 The Fan in the 2:00 p.m. hour.
Radio host Joe Starkey first posed the question to Barlett about why Kennedy would not take the rare opportunity of hitting the open market at age 24:
“Ultimately he may, ” Bartlett told the Fan.

“Right now our focus is trying to get a player who wants to be in Pittsburgh done and the team has made it clear to us, they would like him back, ” Bartlett said.
“We’re not able to talk to other teams right now and plan is to stay on the path of trying to get something done ” Bartlett said.
On the Penguins not making a qualifying offer:
“It certainly something they indicated they might do, ” Barlett said. “Wasn’t a total shock.”
Bartlett on negotiations:
“Good faith effort, we haven’t stopped talks, ” Bartlett said. “We’re continuing to negotiate in good faith.” — TIOPS Staff
DePaoli’s Take: I’ve dealt with Bartlett on a several fronts over the past couple years since getting into this business, especially quite often of late with Kennedy and I feel he is being truthful in that he’s trying to get a deal done with the Penguins.
However, Bartlett has been around the game for 20+ years and he’s knows the rare opportunity Kennedy has in front of him.
Unless the Penguins show an interest in offering over $2 million per season for the first time this off-season, it’s still hard to imagine Kennedy not testing the open market.
Sense around the league is any deal for Kennedy from the Penguins is going to cost 2 years – $4 million and under that scenario Kennedy would be making some concessions.
Also of note: Kennedy’s camp needs to try to keep the Penguins in the mix even if he hits the open market.

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