Penguins are done top-6 winger shopping following Kessel acquisition, looking to add another bottom-6 forward

 

It took about a month to get done by Jim Rutherford nabbed his No. 1 target at the end of the day. “Very excited about what happened,” Rutherford said of the Penguins acquisition of Phil Kessel. “Worked on this deal with Toronto for about a month. Got a little bit of legs on draft night and heated up last night.” Rutherford noted that the Penguins “poked” around on other available wingers but Kessel was their main target from the get go. “Kessel was our main [No. 1] target,” Rutherford said. “Ideal player we were looking for.” Rutherford set out to add an impact scoring winger and he accomplished that goal. “When you can get a pure goal scorer…….that is going to help you win games,” Rutherford said. “We got the best player in the trade right now.” On the notion that Kessel is lazy and a bad teammate, “I don’tRead More »

Former Penguins Gonchar, Kennedy interested in returning to Pittsburgh

 

We’ve talked about the Sergei Gonchar stuff for a few days and after meeting with Gonchar’s camp over the weekend, the Penguins remain open to the idea. Agent JP Barry confirming to Inside Pittsburgh Sports.com that he met with Penguins officials to “discuss Sergei” during the interview period, indicated today that the door is open to Gonchar signing with the Penguins but nothing is definite at this point. “We will see moving forward,” Barry said. Meanwhile, another former Penguin in Tyler Kennedy has very strong interest in returning to the Penguins but unlike the Penguins and Gonchar, it’s unclear whether the interest is mutual from the Penguins end. “From our side [Pittsburgh is] very attractive,” veteran agent Steve Bartlett said when asked of Kennedy having interest in Pittsburgh.

Pressing question with July 1 looming is whether Penguins can help themselves and not spend on older players they’re mulling runs at

 

View image | gettyimages.com Jim Rutherford and the Pittsburgh Penguins left the draft Saturday without accomplishing their primary goal of acquiring an impact top-6 winger. Rutherford’s No. 1 priority continues to be to finalize a deal for Phil Kessel but it’s a deal that may take a while or it might not happen at all as neither side is ready to give in at this point. On the flip side, all of the Penguins so called “Plan B” Targets internally were also not traded, Patrick Sharp, Jiri Hudler, Jeff Skinner among them, but Kessel is the big fish Rutherford really wants, multiple sources continue to indicate. Some parameters were established in the Leafs taking on a few roster players, Chris Kunitz was one player the two sides agreed on, to help ease the Penguins cap situation for the short-term, but Toronto isn’t coming off their ask of Olli Maatta, andRead More »

Despite talk of getting younger, Penguins not ruling out a run at Joel Ward on July 1

 

The direction of where the Penguins off-season is headed has been all over the map based on players the Penguins are pursuing in trades and considering runs at on July 1. Despite talk of Penguins wanting to get younger and saying they want to, they’ve been chatting it up with agents for players during the UFA window who are closer to 40 than 25.

Daily 5: Chatter around league has Rutherford looking to swing for the fences in acquiring Kessel & more

 

TIOPS DAILY FIVE *Rumblings, Musings, Opinions* 1. Chris Kunitz future with the Penguins this summer is hinging on whether the Penguins make a specific move they are exploring for a top-6 winger, Inside Pittsburgh Sports has learned. A source close to the situation in simplest terms says the Penguins are not planning to move Kunitz just for the sake of moving him but have explored scenarios to create a roster spot or cap room, were the Penguins to swing a deal for one scenario they’re exploring right now. That leads to this:

Latest Penguins Rumors: Sharp identified as a top target, Jiri Hudler linked to Pens?

 

LATEST PENGUINS RUMORS Penguins GM Jim Rutherford has identified Patrick Sharp as a top trade target, multiple sources have confirmed over the last 48 hours, and with the General Managers gathered in Las Vegas today, it’s been expected that trade talks for Sharp would start hitting the serious stages in the next 24-48 hours. Hearing Stars, Penguins and Panthers are teams most interested in #Blackhawks' Patrick Sharp. Asking price still too high. — Chris Kuc (@ChrisKuc) June 24, 2015 Blackhawks reporter Chris Kuc of the Chicago Tribune reports the Penguins, Panthers and Stars are the teams expressing the most interest at this point. Rutherford is looking to make a serious play for Sharp and his very close relationship to Sharps agent Rick Curran likely won’t hurt in the process. Dallas and Florida, though, are two ideal destinations for Sharp, while the Capitals who pursued Sharp at the deadline have beenRead More »

Chicago Blackhawks claim third Stanley Cup in six years

 

The Chicago Blackhawks are the 2014-2015 Stanley Cup Champions. Winning for the third time in the last six years and for the first time in Chicago since 1938, the Blackhawks defeated the Lightning 2-0 in Game 6. Duncan Keith who took home the Conn Smythe trophy as playoff MVP, scored the game winning goal and Patrick Kane put the game away with 5:14 left in regulation burying a beautiful feed from Brad Richards. After falling down 2-1 in the series, the Blackhawks won three straight to close out the series. The up and down Corey Crawford backstopped the Blackhawks to their second Cup in three years and Crawford rose to the occasion at the right time, posting a .975 save percentage over the final three games of the series. Keith with 21 points in playoffs became just the 11th defenseman to post 20 points in a post-season. The others whoRead More »

Brandon Saad leads Blackhawks to 2-1 win, series tied

 

Game 4 Stanley Cup Final The Stanley Cup Final is all tied up at 2-2 as the series shifts back to Tampa Bay for Game 5. Jonathan Toews, Brandon Saad came up with clutch performances as the Blackhawks somehow preserved a 2-1 lead in the closing minutes to take Game 4 with a 2-1 win. Toews scored his 10th goal of the post-season in the second period and Brandon Saad would net the game winner for the Hawks at 6:22 of the third period. Patrick Sharp on Brandon Saad: "What is he 21 (actually, he's 22) years old? He looks like a grown man out there." #Blackhawks — Chris Kuc (@ChrisKuc) June 11, 2015 It might be the last goal Saad ever scores in a Blackhawk uniform as you know the Penguins believe they’re going to trade Nick Spaling for Saad in a couple weeks. The Lightning had to turnRead More »