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Insider Only Penguins/NHL Free Agency Frenzy *Live Updates*

July 2, 2009
9:44 p.m. Fedotenko decision set for Friday

A source in Fedotenko’s camp just confirmed to me, Fedotenko will sign with a team on Friday. He is currently weighing his options as he still has 4 offers on the table. I’ll have a post up in a few on his potential landing spots. A lot of quality forwards still on the market.

9:19 p.m. PIT more active in trade talks?

A source tells me the Penguins have been so quiet on the open market that they have been more active in trade talks than pursuing potential free agents.

9:10 p.m. Koivu deal going South

Star Tribune reports a deal between the Wild, Saku Koivu is going south. They have confirmed that the Rangers are making a play. Ruslan Fedotenko’s camp has been waiting for some movement on this front all day.

8:50 p.m. Pittsburgh an attractive destination for Jay McKee?

Several teams are expressing interest in defenseman Jay McKee including the Pittsburgh Penguins. McKee’s contract was bought out by the St Louis Blues last week. His market value is below $2 million. He is currently engaged in talks with the Buffalo Sabres but is shopping his services leaguewide.

8:25 p.m. Kovalev expected to sign tomorrow

Alexei Kovalev is weighing his options and will not sign until tomorrow. Has up to five offers he is considering. Penguins have not been actively engaged in talks with Kovalev’s camp to this point.

8:19 p.m. No offer to Sykora

Petr Sykora has drawn interest from up to four teams including the Vancouver Canucks, Nashville Predators and LA Kings. No offer from the Penguins, just discussions about the parameters of a potential deal. Sykora would like to look elsewhere for a two year deal.

8:17 p.m. Penguins interested in Nick Boynton

The Penguins have reached out to Nick Boynton’s camp to get a sense if Boynton would be interested in a one year deal at a lower salary. Some believe Boynton won’t get above $2 million on the open market. No offer has been made to this point.

5:00 p.m. Fedotenko not close to a new deal

Sources close to Fedotenko tell me “talks are on-going” with Minnesota and Pittsburgh and the source mentions “talking to others too”, A deal is not close right now and Fedotenko continues to explore all of his options. Minnesota remains Fedotenko’s top choice according to sources. Click here for offers he received on day 1 of free agency.

4:32 p.m. Beauchemen speculation

There has been a ton of Francois Beauchemen speculation ever since a report surfaced that he had an interest in Pittsburgh. Penguins clearly likes him but he has received offers upwards of $3.75 million. Beauchemen would have to take a 6-7 year deal at price around $2.5 million at the max. Pittsburgh couldn’t afford much else.

4:22 p.m. Pittsburgh pushes forward in pursuit of Fedotenko

Penguins have tendered Ruslan Fedotenko a revised offer with an increase in the amount of money per season. One source says it’s an increase of $300k. The term not the amount of money per season has been the holdup on any progress on a new contract. Fedotenko has a lot of options and could wait until tomorrow to sign, although Pittsburgh expects a decision today.

4:02 p.m. PIT couldn’t come close to LA, DAL.

New York and Minnesota had offers in the Penguins range of 4/5 yrs – $8-$10 million but Pittsburgh couldn’t compete with the offers from MTL, DAL, LAK. Scuderi scratched Montreal off his list yesterday despite a lucrative offer. The Final three teams in the mix were LA, Dallas and Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh did not offer a NTC which was a snag in talks as Scuderi likely would have become trade bait in a few years.

3:25 p.m. Scuderi gets close to $14 million with Kings.

Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Rob Scuderi has signed with the LA Kings via Rob Rossi. Scuderi informed the Penguins within the last 30 minutes of the decision.

2:25 p.m. Market for Kovalev

The market has been relatively quiet on the Alexei Kovalev front. He has offers on the table from the New Jersey Devils, Vancouver Canucks and LA Kings. It is believed he prefers to stay in the East Coast. Teams giving him a looking depending on other fronts are the Minnesota Wild, New York Rangers, and the Edmonton Oilers. A sleeper teamremains the Capitals who have been linked to him for weeks. Kovalev will have to take a discount to sign with them though. If he wants to cash and join a non-contender, Atlanta will be happy to sign him. Unless Pittsburgh clears cap space, they won’t be a player for him.

12:52 p.m. Scuderi update

One thing to ponder; Last year when Brooks Orpik was torn on whether to return he did not sign until 5:00 p.m. on day 2 of NHL free agency. He came back to Pittsburgh around 3:30 p.m. that day. — New update in a few minutes on contract talks with Pittsburgh in the Penguins insider section .

12:20 p.m. Penguins in the ballpark?

On the Scuderi front, I’m hearing the Penguins are very close in amount of money per season compared to what the New York Rangers and the Minnesota Wild. Two places Scuderi is very interested in joining. Minnesota may even pull their offer according to a source and look at cheaper options. Others have made lucrative offers. When it comes to contending teams Pittsburgh can get close but the offers from non-contending teams, Pittsburgh isn’t even close. Pittsburgh has made a 4 year offer. Scuderi’s camp will look to try to get five.

11:06 a.m. Wild still in on Fedotenko?

It is widely believed that the Minnesota Wild are Ruslan Fedotenko’s first choice. A source with the Wild just told me they are still in the running but a lot has to do with what Koivu does. Hearing we likely won’t see any movement on Fedotenko until Koivu makes his intentions known, which should be very soon.

10:36 a.m. Pyatt to Carolina?

There’s talk that the Carolina could be close to signing Taylor Pyatt, formerly of the Vancouver Canucks. Pyatt is a player the Penguins have looked into. The Canes have shown interest in Ruslan Fedotenko and Petr Sykora.

9:52 a.m. Antropov expected to sign today

Nik Antropov has a lucrative offer on the table from the Atlanta Thrashers. He is also drawn interest from the Kings, Hurricanes, Stars, and Blues. The Rangers are believed to have been keeping in touch with his agent despite his $5 million a year asking price. If the price comes down, Rangers could make a late play for him.

9:50 a.m. Devils in on Alex Tanguay

It has been very quiet on the Alex Tanguay front but the New Jersey Devils have been kicking the tires on the Tanguay. Kings, Oilers, Canucks have also been getting mentioned but for the most part Tanguay isn’t getting much play.

8:50 a.m. Teammates trying to lure Scuderi back

Rob Scuderi was one of several players that was involved with texting Brooks Orpik last year as he considered several offers. According to a source, now that Scuderi is on the verge of making a decision, his teammates are not making it easy for him. That he led to some talk that Scuderi may be leaning towards accepting the Penguins offer which is believed to be a four year offer but as of last night a deal wasn’t close. Look for Stephen Bartlett the agent for Scuderi to try to get Pittsburgh to go five years. Scuderi is believed to be down to three teams.

1:45 a.m. Wild are Fedotenko’s top choice

Ruslan Fedotenko’s top choice is to sign with the Minnesota Wild according to multiple sources but Fedotenko is in a holding pattern until the Wild receive word from Saku Koivu. The Wild are believed to have discussed a 3 year deal with Fedotenko but with only $7 million in cap space remaining, they may pull the offer if Koivu signs. Fedotenko is weighing a number of offers including the Penguins.

July 1, 2009
11:45 p.m. Live Updates

Main updates page isn’t coming up right now so here is a run-down of today’s action.

11:31 p.m. Hurricanes linked to Fedotenko?

The Carolina Hurricanes have closed the door on a return for Chad Larose as Larose turned down a three year offer and the money saved by Larose looking elsewhere, has led to the Hurricanes making Fedotenko a three year offer.

10:50 p.m. Calgary/PIT trade talks

Update on the trade talks we mentioned around 12:30 p.m. — Penguins have tried to land winger David Moss. Calgary has been pushing Curtis Glencross. Nothing on that front right now but the Flames are interested in Godard and Dupuis.

10:35 p.m. Penguins make offer to Vet-netminder

Penguins have made a 1 year contract offer to a veteran goaltender. It is 2-way deal worth $685k at the NHL level according to multiple sources. Earlier in the day the Penguins inquired about Kevin Weekes.

10:15 p.m. Wild sign Martin Havlat

The Minnesota Wild have signed Martin Havlat and Chuck Fletcher makes his big splash. Fedotenko still on the Wild radar and Havlat, Fedotenko are represented by the same agent but it remains to be seen if there will be enough space for Fedotenko or Scuderi once the Wild finalize a deal for Saku Koivu.

9:50 p.m. Boynton unlikely but on Pens radar

While Pittsburgh waits for Rob Scuderi, they are exploring Plan B options. One scenario the Penguins have explored is pursuing defenseman Nick Boynton. I’m told Pittsburgh has approached his camp about a the possibilty of a one year deal, a scenario similar to Ruslan Fedotenko last season; Opportunity to Increase market value for next year by playing with championship caliber team. Boynton is a player the Penguins have been high on for sometime but he will have to take atleast $900k-$1 million reduction in pay.

8:44 p.m. Wild trying to sign Martin Havlat

The Minnesota Wild are involved in negotiations with Allan Walsh the agent for Marty Havlat.

8:30 p.m. Gionta lands 5 year deal

Brian Gionta has landed a five year deal worth $25 million with the Montreal Canadiens according to RDS.ca. It was very clear early in the day the Penguins were not going to be a player for Gionta who made $4 million per season.

8:20 p.m. Rangers land Gaborik

As expected the New York Rangers have signed Marian Gaborik. They have been the favorites all afternoon. The deal is 5 years worth $37.5 million per TSN.

8:01 p.m. Scuderi reviewing offers

Scuderi is reviewing his offers and will trim his list down to three within the hour if he hasn’t already, although a decision may not come tonight. Last I heard he had offers from the Minnesota, New York Rangers, LA Kings, Dallas Stars. There could be others but the Florida Panthers have made a late inquiry. Scuderi’s camp expected the Islanders to join the sweepstakes once they missed out on Mike Komisarek but it has been very quiet from their end so far. Two teams in on Scuderi are also in on Francois Beauchemen.

7:20 p.m. Garon, Blue Jackets finalize deal

Mathieu Garon has agreed to a two year deal with the Blue Jackets.

7:11 p.m. Havlat, Fedotenko a packaged deal?

The LA Kings, New York Rangers and Minnesota Wild are among three teams expressing interest in both players. With both players represented by the same agent, it has led to speculation that both players could land at the same destination. Update on the rest of Fedotenko’s suitors in a bit.

7:03 p.m. New Updates on Kotalik, Sykora

Strong interest in Ales Kotalik. Three suitors for Petr Sykora including the Penguins. TIOPS has the latest

7:00 p.m. Wings in on Sykora?

A source close to Sykora indicates three teams have expressed an interest in Sykora. Detroit was one of the teams. Mike Babcock coached Sykora in Anaheim but I don’t see him being a good fit there. Pittsburgh has discussed a one year offer with him. Kotalik remains on the Penguins radar. Expected to land a two year deal. Not sure he is going to get it from Pittsburgh.

6:51 p.m. Antropov sweepstakes heating up

Thrashers may have some company in their pursuit of Nik Antropov. Kings, Canadiens, Blues and Wild showing interest. Penguins are not involved.

6:10 p.m. Predators re-sign Steve Sullivan

Penguins made a two year offer to Steve Sullivan but it wasn’t enough as the veteran forward re-signed with the Predators.

5:57 p.m. Scuderi signing imminent?

Rangers waiting to hear back from Rob Scuderi. Others remain in the mix including the Penguins. Minnesota’s offer to Scuderi remains on the table despite the signing of Zanon. – Penguins have officially signed defenseman Brian Strait to a three year deal

5:54 p.m. Leafs sign Mike Komisarek

The Toronto Maple Leafs have signed Mike Komisarek per TSN. The deal is for 5 years worth $22.5 million. The Rangers and Islanders were the finalists.

5:51 p.m. Penguins Shopping veteran defenseman?

I’m hearing the Penguins are shopping defenseman Mark Eaton, forwards Pascal Dupuis and Eric Godard. Teams is serious about trying to re-tain Rob Scuderi and also have their eye on a few UFA forwards including Ruslan Fedotenko.

5:30 p.m. Canadiens sign Mike Cammalleri

Canadiens have agreed to a five year deal with forward Mike Cammalleri. Cammalleri was on the radar of the Wild, Rangers, and Leafs.

5:03 p.m. Penguins trying to clear space for Scuderi/foward

Godard and Dupuis are being packaged to save more than $2 million per season on the cap. more to come

4:45 p.m. Gill signs two year deal with Montreal

The Montreal Canadiens have signed Hal Gill to a two year deal worth $4.5 million. Penguins are very surprised he received that kind of money.

4:40 p.m. Penguins sign Michael Rupp

Penguins have signed forward 4th line forward Mike Rupp to a two year deal worth $1.65 million. I’m told this move could be playing a factor in Calgary trade talks. As we mentioned earlier the Flames and Penguins have been talking with the Penguins shopping Dupuis/Godard as a package.

4:39 p.m. Rangers in holding pattern with Scuderi

The Rangers have extended offers to Marian Gaborik, Mike Komisarek.They remain engaged with talks with Rob Scuderi but are waiting on one of their big three targets. If they land Gaborik or Cammalleri who they are expressing interest in that puts them out of the Komisarek sweepstakes. Rangers are also in on Chris Neil, Ruslan Fedotenko.

4:37 p.m. Penguins in on Steve Sullivan

Penguins making a pitch for Steve Sullivan? TIOPS has the latest

4:37 p.m. Sullivan on Penguins radar

Pittsburgh has discussed parameters of a contract with Steve Sullivan according to a source close to Stephen Bartlett. Two years were discussed but the Penguins may have to contend with the Thrashers who I’m told made a three year offer. Nashville remains in the mix.

4:00 p.m. Cole gets $5.8 over two years

Erik Cole didn’t draw much interest on the open market settled for a two year deal worth $5.8 million. Pittsburgh looked into his asking price but nothing more than that.

3:48 p.m. Scuderi turned down multi-year offer from Habs

The Habs looked into Rob Scuderi but as I mentioned earlier he didn’t have much interest in playing in Montreal. He turned down an over-ture from them and they are expected to look elsewhere.

3:45 p.m. Penguins interested in Kevin Weekes

Pittsburgh has expressed some interest in goaltender Kevin Weekes according to a team source. Weekes is a client of Allan Walsh who represented up to 6 players on the Penguins roster last season. Weekes would battle John Curry for a #2 spot

3:31 p.m. Garon, Blue Jackets nearing deal

Not that the Islanders and Blues have looked elsewhere, Mathieu Garon is closing in on a two year deal with the Blue Jackets.

3:24 p.m. Penguins make multi-year pitch to Scuderi?

Four year offer on the table to Scuderi? TIOPS has the latest

3:23 p.m. Penguins make multi-year pitch to Scuderi?

It is believed that Pittsburgh has made Rob Scuderi a four year offer. Still hearing he has offers on the table from New York Rangers, Dallas Stars, Montreal Canadiens, LA Kings and Minnesota Wild.

3:20 p.m. Sullivan, Pyatt, Kotalik

Pittsburgh has reached out to Steve Sullivan, Ales Kotalik and Taylor Pyatt. Not sure bout the interest in Pyatt but the Penguins like him. Erik Cole is mulling offers. No confirmation if Pittsburgh made any but they did inquire about his asking price earlier in the day.

3:04 p.m. Gionta off the Penguins radar?

Ray Shero has spoken to Stephen Barlett about a number of his clients but indications are Brian Gionta will not be a fit. Out of the Penguins price range.

2:32 p.m. Penguins make offer to Knuble

The Penguins have made an 1 year offer (NTC) to Mike Knuble according to a source. There has been significant interest league wide and has received offers from the Kings, Rangers, Capitals, Hurricanes. Updated: 2:40 p.m. – Knuble has signed with the Capitals. Rangers, Capitals were the favorites

2:07 p.m. Rangers pursuit of Scuderi on Hold?

Talks with Rob Scuderi are on hold as the Rangers are waiting back to hear from Mike Komisarek. They have made a lucrative offer.

2:00 p.m. Kings, Wild among 5 teams in on Fedotenko

Market heating up for Ruslan Fedotenko. TIOPS has the latest

1:59 p.m. Wild, Kings, Sens, Rangers

A Penguins source indicates the Minnesota Wild, LA Kings, Ottawa Senators, Phoenix Coyotes and New York Rangers are in on Ruslan Fedotenko. Pittsburgh offer remains on the table but agent Allan Walsh is trying to use Havlat, Fedotenko as a package deal in talks with Wild, Kings and Rangers. More teams could get in the running.

1:52 p.m. Islanders, Blues pursuing Mathieu Garon

The New York Islanders have have reached out to Mathieu Garon. Blues Insider Andy Strickland reports the Blues are also showing interest. Ty Conklin also being pursued by the Isles and Blues.

1:44 p.m. Market for Kovalev

Oilers, Kings, Rangers and the Capitals have been kicking the tires on Kovalev. The market is at $3.75 million per season right now. No comment from Scott Greenspun regarding any interest from the Penguins. Montreal remains in the mix.

1:37 p.m. Canes, Lightning in on Hal Gill?

Are the Carolina Hurricanes interested in Hal Gill? TIOPS has the latest.

1:37 p.m. Canes, Lightning interested in Hal Gill

The Tampa Bay Lighting have targeted Hal Gill as a potential target. The Canes have also reached out to Gills’ camp. Pittsburgh remains interested in Gill.

1:24 p.m. Scuderi has 4yr – $14 million on the table?

Hearing Rob Scuderi has a 4 year offer worth $13-$14 million on the table from the Dallas Stars. Scuderi remains highly interested in Minnesota. Tampa Bay is not in the mix.

1:03 p.m. Knuble receives multi-year offer

Mike Knuble has received a two year offer believed to be from a Western Conference team. Pittsburgh, Vancouver, NJD, New York and Washington have all reached out to him

12:53 p.m. Scuderi not interested in MTL?

As we mentioned earlier Montreal is among 5 teams pursuing Scuderi. Hearing he doesn’t have much interest in playing there.

12:45 p.m. trade in the works between PIT/CGY

Curtis Glencross on the Penguins radar?

12:45 pm -Dupuis/Godard to Calgary?

The Calgary Flames and Pittsburgh Penguins have held talks about sending Pascal Dupuis and Eric Godard or prospect to Calgary in exchange for Curtis Glencross. Flames trying to send another salary to Pittsburgh

12:33 pm -Wild make offer

The Minnesota Wild have made an offer to Rob Scuderi. Four years according to my source. They are in talks. It is a place he is highly interested in.

12:30 pm – Reach out to Erik Cole?

The Pittsburgh Penguins have reached out to Stephen Barlett the agent for Erik Cole. Seeking a multi-year deal but Pittsburgh is willing to do a Ruslan Fedotenko type of deal. Unlikely to materialize.

12:20 pm – Rangers in hot pursuit

The New York Rangers, Montreal Canadiens, Minnesota Wild and New York Islanders are in hot pursuit of Rob Scuderi. Good friend Rob Rossi mentioned the Stars are interested. Haven’t heard about them to this point.

12:15 pm – Wild, Coyotes in on Fedotenko

The Minnesota Wild and Phoenix Coyotes have inquired about Ruslan Fedotenko. There will be others. Wild are also in on Martin Havlat and are trying to get a package deal.

12:05 pm – Penguins made late offer to Fedotenko

The Penguins made an 11th hr offer to Fedotenko. It was too late.

11:15 am – Caps, Pens, Rangers?

League sources believe it will be a three team race in the sweepstakes for Mike Knuble; Rangers, Penguins, Capitals. I’m hearing the Capitals will likely be the most aggressive team.

12: 05 am – TB, MIN, MTL interested in Scuderi

Sources close to Stephen Bartlett indicate Scuderi’s camp is hearing the Tampa Bay Lightning, Minnesota Wild, New York Islanders, Montreal Canadiens and the LA Kings will make offers to Scuderi on day 1 of free agency. They also expect the offers to be upwards of $3.25 million per season. Scuderi’s days as a Penguin are over.

July 30, 2009
10:29 pm – Shero to reach out to Gonchar

Penguins GM Ray Shero will speak to Sergei Gonchar’s camp this week to discuss the parameters of a long-term extension. Gonchar is Shero’s #1 priority this off-season.

10:00pm – Pesonen to explore options in the NHL first

Janne Pesonen is drawing interest from Saint Petrsburgh of the KHL, coached by Barry Smith. Pesonen’s agent indicates Janne will explore his options in the NHL first. Believed to be looking for a one way contract. Tampa Bay, LA scouted Pesonen heavily near the end of this season. Minnesota could give him a look. As mentioned a week, Pittsburgh has been in contact with Pesonen

8:15pm – Parameters of Contract for Fedotenko

A source close to Fedotenko tells me, the two sides continue to discuss the parameters of a new contract and are “exploring many different concepts” of a potential deal. An official offer has not been made but everything from a 1-3 year deal has been discussed. Both sides expect negotiations to continue through tomorrow’s 12:00 p.m. deadline

About The Author

William DePaoli

TIOPS Insider

William DePaoli is the President/Founder of Inside Pittsburgh Sports LLC and can be reached at wdepaoli@insidepittsburghsports.com

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