MORROW LANDS WITH BLUES Brenden Morrow is off the free agent market after more than three months, agreeing to a one year worth $1.5 million with the St. Louis Blues. As expected, Morrow is taking a significant paycut, made $4.1 million last season, but could be one of the best bargains in the NHL. Morrow went into free agency seeking a multi-year deal in the $3 million range and the Blues played their cards right, expressing interest very early in Morrow and then waited for the price tag to come down. Morrow picked the Blues over the Carolina Hurricanes who were also offering around the same money. The Penguins informed Morrow prior to free agency they would not try to resign him.
HURRICANES LOOK TO FREE AGENT MARKET OR TRADE ROUTE Will the Carolina Hurricanes look at Matt Niskanen as an option to replace Joni Pitkanen who is lost for the season? Possible, but to this point there hasn’t been any substantive trade talks between the Penguins and Carolina about Niskanen, sources tell Inside Pittsburgh Sports. The Penguins would like to hold onto Niskanen. Even with Pitkanen, it was going to be tough sledding for the Hurricanes in the Metropolitan division and the buzz for a few weeks now has been that Carolina seeks a left handed top-4 defenseman to replace Pitkanen. Ron Hainsey has been linked to the Hurricanes and Bob McKenzie of TSN threw out Leafs RFA Cody Franson as a possibility. One intriguing option for the Hurricanes would be taking a gamble on Flyers defenseman Andrej Meszaro who has one year left on his contract with a $4 millionRead More »
The salary cap is $64.3 million for 2013-2014 season and the Pittsburgh Penguins have have $63,623,333 committed to 20 players (11 forwards, 7 defensemen, 2 goaltenders) for next season. Qualifying offers to Dustin Jeffrey ($687,500) and Robert Bortuzzo (577,500) combine for $1.265 million. Harry Zolnierczyk who the Penguins feel could win a final roster spot, received a $660,000 qualifying offer last week and is likely to sign the tender barring the two sides working out a longer-term deal. Jeffrey has full intentions to sign his tender, while Bortuzzo could see his salary rise to around $625,000 as the Penguins intend to look into signing Bortuzzo to a two year extension this summer that will net him a one-way contract. Jeffrey signing his tender alone takes the Penguins above the salary cap, so the Penguins have some salary to move by the start of the season to be in compliance with the salaryRead More »
POST-GAME BUZZ Jarome Iginla (13) and Dustin Jeffrey (3) scored first period goals and Tomas Vokoun made 34 saves, leading the Pittsburgh Penguins (35-10-0, 70 pts) to a 3-1 win over the Ottawa Senators (23-16-6, 52 pts) on Monday night at Scotiabank Place. Tyler Kennedy (6) added an insurance goal with 2:34 left in the game to seal the win. Vokoun with the win earned his 300th career victory (28th goaltender in NHL history), while Penguins head coach Dan Bylsma earned his 200th career win in just 316 NHL games, the fastest coach in NHL history to reach that milestone. The Penguins earning their 7th straight win and 22nd out of 24 games, did so without an All-Star cast of players. The long list included: Kris Letang Evgeni Malkin Marc Andre Fleury Sidney Crosby James Neal Beau Bennett Mark Eaton Joe Vitale The Penguins win increases the chances of theRead More »
POST-GAME BUZZ Brenden Morrow (9) had two goals and an assist to lift the Pittsburgh Penguins (32-10-0, 64 pts) to a 3-1 victory over the Florida Panthers on Saturday night. Beau Bennett added two assists and Kris Letang (4) also scored for the Penguins who won for the 19th time in 21 games. Bennett’s two assists marked his first multi-point game of his career. Marc-Andre Fleury made 25 saves to earn his 21st win of the season. The Penguins played without center Evgeni Malkin who was a late scratch due to what head coach Dan Bylsma is calling a “re-aggravated, nagging injury.” It’s believed Malkin is dealing with a shoulder injury or that’s said to be what the Penguins want out there. With Malkin out the Penguins reconfigured their lines that included Pascal Dupuis centering Brenden Morrow and Beau Bennett on the second line. Joe Vitale replaced Malkin in theRead More »
BLYSMA ON MORROW PITTSBURGH — Penguins head coach Dan Bylsma said after tonight’s 2-1 overtime win against the Philadelphia Flyers that he can envision newly acquired Brenden Morrow playing on the second or third line. “I can envision him playing alongside Malkin and Neal. I can also envision him in a third line role with Sutter and Cooke, being a gritty, tough line,” Bylsma said.
BREAKING DOWN THE ACQUISITION OF BRENDEN MORROW When you’re a win-now team with Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin in their prime, you have few untouchables in your system and that’s what we’re seeing here with the Penguins acquisition of 34 year old winger Brenden Morrow in exchange for 2011 first round pick Joe Morrow.
THURSDAY’S PENGUINS TRADE DEADLINE TOP-5 1. There’s a strong sense that the Penguins and Bruins, the two top Cup contenders in the Eastern Conference, are chasing the same players leading into the April 3rd trade deadline. It’s a group that is becoming thinner and what’s interesting is that both teams are also said to be considering the same options at the deadline; Adding a top-4 defenseman, bottom two-line player or top-6 forward. 2. One team the Penguins continue to scout heavily of late is the Dallas Stars. The Penguins have scouted five of the Stars last seven games and the Penguins were in attendance last night for Stars – Avalanche game. Adrian Dater of the Denver Post points out the Penguins were the only Eastern Conference team in attendance last night for Av’s-Stars. Brenden Morrow and Eric Nystrom are two notable players the Penguins have been tracking, sources say, WhatRead More »