Latest Pens Rumblings: Stars interested in Letang; Tampa considering big play?; Canucks/Neal


LATEST ON LETANG Penguins GM Ray Shero is saying all the right things in how his focus is on resigning Kris Letang and not trading the 26 year old defenseman. That is true and the Penguins remain hopeful of working something out, but the Penguins have also begun the process of laying the groundwork to see what’s out there, holding preliminary discussions with teams interested in Letang and teams the Penguins see as attractive trade partners. Trade talks have been deemed to just be in the feeling out process to this point from the Penguins end, but could turn serious in the next 24-36 hours if there’s no traction in talks this afternoon between Shero and Kris Letang’s agent Kent Hughes. Shero and Hughes planned to hold a face to face meeting late afternoon. Since the Penguins made their eight year offer to Letang on Wednesday, they have not madeRead More »

Source: Penguins have 8 year offer on the table to Letang


The Pittsburgh Penguins have made an 8 year offer to Kris Letang in the past 24 hours that team sources say would be third largest contract (in total value) given out during the Ray Shero era. The Penguins are waiting for a counter offer from Letang’s agent Kent Hughes today as the two sides are deep in talks. If there’s no breakthrough in talks in the next 48 hours, are we headed towards a trade on draft day? Many around the league believe so and the Penguins want Letang to think that, sources say, but the Penguins have yet to make Letang available for trade.

Early Chatter on Letang: Penguins to look to keep cap hit from surpassing $6 – $6.25 million range on new deal


With Evgeni Malkin now locked up to a new 8 year extenson, all eyes turn to Kris Letang. Letang, 26, will have the opportunity to become one of the highest paid defensemen in the league, but if he has his sights set on that type of money, it won’t be coming from the Penguins. General Managers around the league are certainly intrigued about Letang possibly becoming available leading up to the draft or later this year, and Penguins GM Ray Shero is already getting calls similar to Jordan Staal last off-season, where teams are making it known that they are interested were Shero to make Letang available. The first step for the Penguins will be gauging Letang’s demands and intentions. Shero has yet to open up discussions with agent Kent Hughes, although indications out of the organization is that talks are likely to begin next week following the Penguins proRead More »

Game 3 Special Teams Analysis on the power play not being able to deliver a season saving win & more


PITTSBURGH PENGUINS PLAYOFF ANALYSIS SPECIAL TEAMS ROUND 3, GAME 3 By Dave Fryer, Contributor to As predicted, producing on the power play was going to be vital if the Pittsburgh Penguins were going to rally out of a 2-0 hole against the Boston Bruins in Game 3. Instead, Pittsburgh laid another egg with the man advantage, going 0-for 6 in a game where a single goal at any point of the contest would have given them the win they so desperately needed. Conversely, the Penguins’ penalty kill upheld its part admirably, shutting down all six Boston power plays – including three in overtime – without too much fret. The hard work of the penalty kill has given the Penguins a legitimate chance to get their offensive play back in gear. But just as penalty killing shouldered a lot of the blame for the post-season ouster in 2012, the failuresRead More »

Whether it’s in Pittsburgh or elsewhere, Letang set to become one of the games highest paid defenseman


WHAT IS LETANG’S WORTH ON A NEW DEAL? Kris Letang is not among the 50 highest paid defensemen in the National Hockey League. That is soon going to change. Letang, 26, a Norris Trophy Candidate and currently second in the NHL playoffs in points with 16, has reached the point in his career where he will get to name his own price on a new deal like Ryan Suter last summer. That’s how highly regarded Letang is around the league as GM’s will be chomping at the bit to sign Letang were he decide not to re-up with the Penguins between now and next summer. Letang is an unrestricted free agent on July 1, 2014, and the Penguins are eligible to sign Letang to an extension this summer, but with the Penguins prepared to first sign Evgeni Malkin to a mega-deal, Letang is expected to be the harder sign. TheRead More »

Penguins Rumors: Kris Letang, Jack Johnson


PENGUINS RUMORS Star defenseman Kris Letang is an “untouchable” going into the April 3rd trade deadline and he is going nowhere, but Letang’s situation gets interesting this summer when the Penguins plan to open up preliminary trade talks on a new mega deal. The question is what type of value you put on Letang? The view around the league is that Letang is widely regarded as a $7 to $8 million a season player. Letang is currently making $3.5 million. While I was driving into the office this morning, I caught some of Darren Dreger’s interview on The Fan Morning Show and he was raving about Letang putting him in the same category as Erik Karlsson. Dreger claimed Letang doesn’t “get the credit he deserves” and I agree with that, and when discussing Letang’s value, Dreger said “he’s better than Drew Doughty.” Doughty by the way carries a $7 million capRead More »

Senators – Penguins Post Game Reactions & Analysis on Special Teams & Cooke fallout


SENATORS – PENGUINS ANALYSIS Paul Martin running the power play continues to be a huge difference for the Penguins who have scored a power play goal in six straight games. Martin has become a calming presence and the Penguins puck movement from the triangle on the sides and into the slot to break down the penalty kill has been the difference in the past handful of games with Martin running the point. “{Paul’s} poised back there, finds open man,” Sidney Crosby said. He keeps it pretty simple.” James Neal’s power play goal at 13:47 of the second period from 32 ft out was text book Neal who found open space in slot and beat Anderson with time and space. Given Neal that type of time and space from that spot, he’s going to score seven out of ten times. “He’s {James Neal} got a great shot,” Crosby said.” Tough toRead More »

Game Day Buzz: Need for left handed defenseman gives Despres advantage to stay in lineup


GAME DAY BUZZ OTTAWA SENATORS (7-4-2, 16 PTS) @ PITTSBURGH PENGUINS (8-5-0, 16 PTS) The emergence of Robert Bortuzzo isn’t going to push Simon Despres out of the lineup for when Kris Letang and Matt Niskanen return to the lineup, which could happen for both tonight vs the Ottawa Senators. Letang and Niskanen who seemed to be under orders not to say whether they will be in the lineup tonight, both indicated after the morning skate that they are a “coaches decision”. “Felt pretty good,” Letang said. “Ready to go”. Expectations are Letang will be in the lineup tonight and Niskanen sounded a lot more optimistic about playing tonight than he seemed after yesterday’s practice, saying today was a “really good day.” Both were to be evaluated after the morning skate. Niskanen left the ice with the regulars, while Letang stayed on later to get some more work in. IfRead More »