The Penguins 7-12-1 in their last twenty games fell out of the top eight in the Eastern Conference following a 6-1 loss to the Florida Panthers. Ownership is spending up to the cap and expects a long playoff run. Is a shakeup in the works?
Like I said in my previous post don’t expect a major trade soon. They don’t happen overnight. I do expect a shakeup on the roster possibly within the week.
One scenario being talked about that could happen this week is Jordan Staal getting another shot at wing¬†on the top two lines. ¬†
The Penguins, Ducks, Blackhawks, Wild, and Blue Jackets are among five teams that have inquired about Atlanta Thrashers forward Slava Kozlov. Sources I’ve talked to expect 6-8 teams to be in the running for Kozlov’s services at the trade deadline. Kozlov has 16 goals – 20 assists – 36 pts in 39 games played this season. His age and cap hit for next season has concerned some teams.
The LA Kings have been quietly pursuing
Alex Goligoski. Dustin Brown is off limits. LA may be willing to move Alexander Frolov according to a source. It‚Äôs a swap that would make sense but I think the Penguins may want more for Goligoski. Young Puck moving defenseman are a hot commidity around the league. Among some league sources , they have heard Pittsburgh has been scouting Kyle Calder but I‚Äôm not buying it.
The Penguins had scouts in LA and San Jose tonight. The Sharks are playing the Islanders and one of the main reasons of scouting the Islanders is to see how Bill Guerin performs against elite teams. The Penguins have had internal discussions of making a play for Guerin. He could provide that Gary Roberts presence. Guerin is also a close friend of Sidney Crosby‚Äôs.
Another thing to consider is Garth Snow is also not afraid to trade within the division. Snow nearly traded Miroslav Satan to Pittsburgh within two hours of the last years trade deadline when talks between Pittsburgh/ Atlanta were at stalemate for a period of time. Guerin is a player to keep an eye on and it will be interesting to see if the Penguins will make a play for him.
Will ownership play a role in the Penguins possibly moving Jordan Staal?
At the NHL draft the Penguins received three offers for Ryan Whitney
FLA receives Ryan Whitney/ PIT receives David Booth/2nd round pick
SJ receives Ryan Whitney/ PIT receives Jonathan Cheecho
Third offer from mystery team believed to be the Carolina Hurricanes.
Shero listened and was believed to be intrigued by the Panthers offer but ownership did not want to move Whitney. They saw him as the heir apparent to Gonchar. Ownership could play a factor again at the trade deadline this season. The vibe is Shero is reluctant to move Jordan Staal. Part of that might be because the Penguins are in the middle of negotiations with Staal but I will tell right now that the pressure is mounting on Shero to find that top 6 winger. Staal is his biggest asset and league sources contend that the Penguins ownership wants Shero to explore the market for Staal.
Ottawa and Colorado among the few teams to inquire about the Penguins asking price for Staal. More on Staal later in the week.
Here are some other rumors going around‚Ä¶‚Ä¶
Penguins have been talking to EDM and Toronto. Eric Cole has not been discussed according to a source. Talks with Edmonton and Toronto have centered around the Penguins adding some forwards that could push others out of the lineup.
Antropov has been discussed but those talks can be characterized as minor talks.
The Buffalo Sabres have inquired about Hal Gill. Penguins appear a bit more open to moving Gill then what it seemed a month or so ago. Gill does have more value than Boucher or Eaton.
Anaheim, Columbus still interested in Philippe Boucher. A mystery team has also made an inquiry.
Prospects Dustin Jeffrey and Alex Grant are coming up in a lot of trade talks¬†just like¬†last year with Alex Goligoski and Luca Caputi.¬†
More to come tomorrow.
Photo courtesy of Dan4th