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Insider Only Trade Talks intensifying around Ian Cole, Pens brass giddy about Oleksiak & More Buzz

Source: Penguins prepared to reignite trade talks surrounding Ian Cole

When Ian Cole’s agent requested permission to seek a trade after Cole was a healthy scratch for a couple games last month, it all but sealed the deal that Cole won’t be resigning in Pittsburgh this summer.

While everyone is putting a good face on for now, Cole expressing a desire to be traded weeks ago out of frustration with his role has still left a bitter taste in the mouth of some decision makers in the organization, sources tell TIOPS.

When Pittsburgh granted Cole’s representatives in late November permission to explore trade opportunities/extension, a trade never got close at the time for a couple reasons:

1. Pittsburgh wasn’t going to get backed into a corner and just move Cole for the sake of moving him because a player was frustrated with being a healthy scratch for a few games. They didn’t want to set a precedent, therefore, Pittsburgh gave the Cole camp a specific asking price they would want from opposing teams (top-9 Forward) that was never close to being met but the sense seems to be Pittsburgh’s high initial asking price would eventually be lowered as time passed, which it has.

2. Pittsburgh’s defensive depth 7-9 in the organization is extremely weak and while the Penguins put an asking price out there they wanted a top-9 forward in exchange for Cole, the Penguins felt they couldn’t move Cole without getting an NHL caliber defenseman back in the deal as a second piece or would have had to make a separate deal to acquire a d-man. The Justin Schultz injury even further complicated moving Cole in the short-term without a legit NHL defenseman coming back.

What the Jamie Oleksiak addition does is change that a bit in that the Penguins are much more comfortable moving Cole now. Cole has also now been bumped to the No. 7 in the rotation, which will put further strain on the situation.

Over the Christmas break and into the New Year, the Penguins are prepared to intensify trade talks surrounding Ian Cole and already have begun the process of re-engaging Want the Full Story? Get "Inside Access" are particular players that interests the Penguins but Edmonton Want the Full Story? Get "Inside Access"

Penguins Giddy about Oleksiak

While Jamie Oleksiak was more of a No. 7 defenseman in Dallas, the Penguins see some things where they believe he is a legit No. 3 pairing defenseman and the plan is to put him immediately into the mix as a 3rd pairing defenseman.

Today in practice he worked with Matt Hunwick as the third pairing, Oleksiak playing the right side.

The Penguins have watched a ton of tape on Oleksiak for the past month with Sergei Gonchar who will working very closely with Oleksiak at the forefront. Pittsburgh also plans to use Oleksiak’s booming shot on the second power play unit, another area Gonchar will work a lot with Oleksiak.

Mike Sullivan wasn’t shy about singing the praises of Oleksiak.

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News Positive on Hornqvist

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About The Author

William DePaoli

TIOPS Insider

William DePaoli is the President/Founder of Inside Pittsburgh Sports LLC and can be reached at

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