A league source tells me Phoenix Coyotes pro scout Peter MacKinnon is scheduled to scout the Penguins again this week, sparking speculation that the Coyotes are looking at a defenseman or two in the Penguins system.
The Coyotes are believed to have inquired defenseman Ben Lovejoy. Pittsburgh in turn has asked about the availability of winger
Peter Mueller. Despite constant speculation around the league that Mueller is on the trade block, Pittsburgh was told that the 21 year old forward is not available at this time. Mueller has fallen out of favor with Coyotes head coach Dave Tippett, which prompted Mueller being a hot topic at the GM meetings earlier this month.
Mueller scored 22 goals in 2007-2008 as a 19 year old but has struggled since, scoring only 13 goals last season and has four points in 22 games this season.
Like any good GM, Ray Shero is always looking to add young scoring wingers to his system but there’s nothing on the Mueller trade front right now with Pittsburgh or any other team.
Two other names being connected to Phoenix in potential lesser deals are defenseman Deryk Engelland and forward Chris Conner. Phoenix could claim Engelland if he is placed on waivers at some point this season. Conner played for Dave Tippett last season in Dallas.
One player that Pittsburgh scouts like in the Coyotes organization is forward Kevin Porter. Porter, a close friend of mine and former teammate in the amateur ranks , has not been a good fit in Dave Tippett’s system.
The former hobey baker award wouldn’t mind a change of scenery and could reach his potential playing in the Penguins up-tempo system.