LATEST PENS RUMBLINGS
— The Pittsburgh Penguins as anticipated are actively gauging the trade market for Brandon Sutter and Chris Kunitz, NHL sources outside the Penguins organization confirm. While the team is listening on nearly anybody not named Crosby, Malkin, Fleury or Maatta, the Penguins are putting Sutter, Kunitz out there as their two main trade chips. Yes it’s a summer of having limited trade assets, though, NHL sources contend the Penguins are willing to move David Perron or Derrick Pouliot in the right deal. For Kunitz, the Penguins are dangling him a year late.
An NHL source put the percentages of Sutter being traded at 60%, Kunitz 40%.
— The Penguins have checked in on Patrick Sharp but as of this morning the Blackhawks have not responded back to engage in any trade talks. Chicago appears to still be in a feeling out process. Any talk that the Blackhawks have asked for Beau Bennett, Kasperi Kapanen and a first round pick is not accurate as the Blackhawks have not asked the Penguins to make an offer or tell them what they’re looking for. Many around the league expect Sharp to go for a second round pick and a prospect. Jim Rutherford has identified Sharp as a top target.
— I’m told to expect talk to emerge by Friday of the Penguins being a team hot after T.J. Oshie, a player identified during pro scouting meetings as a target, but few around the league see the Penguins/Blues being a match based on the Blues looking for NHL players back in return and the type of players they’re looking for, the Penguins don’t have.
— Things can always change quickly at this time of the year, especially when you operate under a win-at-all cost mentality, but the Penguins are more willing to move their 2016 first round pick and multiple 2016 third round picks in a trade for a long-term top-6 winger, than the 46th overall pick in this years draft due to how deep the 2015 draft is. Penguin scouts believe the team can still get a very prospect at No. 46 as the team feels first round talent will still be there in the mid 40’s.
— Here’s not a player who would move the needle much, if at all, but the Penguins and Panthers have had exploratory talks about Brad Boyes, Inside Pittsburgh Sports has learned. Florida is actively looking to acquire a top-6 winger and have expressed a willingness to move Boyes, pending other moves.
Boyes, 33, has one year left with a $2.65 million cap hit. He scored 14 goals in 2014-2015 and ranked fifth on the Panthers in Corsi For (51.65%) and second in Fenwick For (52.46%). Boyes 409 on-ice scoring chances were second among Panthers regulars. He’s been identified as a short-term option.
— Penguins source deny this, but NHL sources outside the organization say Jim Rutherford is shopping Ben Lovejoy for a 2015 third round pick. Buyers remorse?