LATEST ON KRIS LETANG
Nearly four weeks after being swept by the New York Islanders in embarrassing fashion, top decision makers among the Penguins brass are said to be on the same page or at least in the same hemisphere as one source put it regarding Evgeni Malkin and Phil Kessel.
As mentioned recently, there’s intrigue among Penguins GM Jim Rutherford & Co to at least see if a feasible trade is out there for Malkin, while rival clubs continue to operate with the mindset that it’s a foregone conclusion Pittsburgh will look at every avenue to trade Phil Kessel and they’ve heard this directly from the Penguins themselves.
Kris Letang, the third member among the core whose future in Pittsburgh has greatly mulled over by the organization, seems to be a bit of a different story.
There are members in the organization, many in the analytic crowd who will die on the hill that Letang is irreplaceable and believe it’s nonsense to trade a player of his talent.
Elsewhere, there’s said to be a great divide among different members of the coaching staff and the front office regarding Letang.
Some talk around the league is in the immediate aftermath of the round 1 ouster, teams believed Rutherford was leaning into the direction that for the Penguins to actually change the way they play, Letang has to be moved this summer.
A couple weeks later now and you start to hear some push back on that but the Penguins are certainly going to at least gauge the market for Letang as the team owes it to themselves.
Letang is immensely talented, has a great care level and is arguably one of the top-10 talented (from a talent perspective) defenseman in the game.
That, however, doesn’t make him one of the top-10 d-men in the game that many in the Pittsburgh media try to peg him as.
He’s not and he’s not even close to one.
That’s why internally the Penguins are having honest discussions about whether being different without Letang like the team was in their 2017 Stanley Cup run and this season in Letang’s absence is enough to draw from in reshaping this roster.
The biggest mystery of all surrounding Letang that we’ll find out in the next six weeks:
With the recklessness in play, the contract and the neck injury that scares quite a few teams, is there any team out there willing to pay close to a premium for Letang?
In gathering information on Letang from evaluators, a consensus has emerged in that Letang could be a great gamble for a team that needs an elite level puck moving defenseman, but most importantly already has a No. 1 shutdown defenseman in place, where as, Letang could slide into a No. 2 pairing role.
Multiple NHL sources last week pegged To read this insider news, subscribe to get “Inside Access”!
To read this insider news, subscribe to get “Inside Access”! lines up as a great situation for Kris and a win-win for both sides,” an NHL source said.
Kris Letang, 2019 4th round pick to [hide] Montreal
Jeff Petry, 2019 2nd round pick (CLB) to Pittsburgh
The Canadiens have Shea Weber in place to play the No. 1 pairing, tough minutes on the right side, which would free Letang up in a second pairing role. If your Montreal, you hate to give up Jeff Petry who flourished last season as a do-it all, all-around defenseman, but there’s intrigue here to gamble on Letang’s elite level offensive ability to give you that needed jolt in the transition, puck moving game, and hope that playing under Claude Julien and a new system can tone down the recklessness in his game.
Letang on a personal level is loved by members of the Penguins organization, including ownership. Trading him to Montreal would be doing him right.
Adding Letang would still give the Canadiens wiggle room under the cap to chase Matt Duchene or another high-level center they seek on the open market.
Jeff Petry | Age 31 | Cap hit: $5.5 million (Signed Through 2020-2021)
18-19 Stats: 13 Goals – 33 Assists – 46 Pts – -5 – 23:07 TOI
5 vs 5 | 28 Pts – 55CF% – 50GF% – 53.8SCF% [/hide]
For a Penguins team that wants to become a more structured and smarter team defensively in 2019-2020, To read this insider news, subscribe to get “Inside Access”! is the perfect kind of defenseman without having to break the bank that you should be strongly looking at. He’s a puck moving defenseman with good size, skates well, drives possession and his game has taken off the last two years in emerging as an all situations defenseman.[hide] Petry has earned high praise from scouts for how he’s evolved into a responsible 2-way defenseman with ‘elite level’ ability in defending the neutral zone, one scout noted, while also seeing an uptick in offensive numbers in an elevated role since the 2017-2018 season. Scouts say Petry’s minus-30 rating in 2017-2018 was nowhere near reflective of how he actually played that season.
Petry is not Kris Letang from a skill and producing offense standpoint, but he fits the bill of the type of defensemen the Islanders, others succeeded with this season. Defensemen that don’t do anything great but do everything well and that’s really what the Penguins need moving forward.
Back-to-back 40 point seasons, Petry has been above 50% in driving possession over the last four seasons.
15-16 54.6%; 16-17 54.4%; 17-18 52.0; 18-19 55.0%
What would also be enticing for the Penguins here is the $1.75 million in cap savings and two years being left on Petry’s deal compared to three years for Letang. This is a summer where every dollar against the cap has to be maximized for the Penguins.
Trade Scenario #2 | Going the Cap Relief Route
A General Manager who has already checked in with the Penguins on Kris Letang is Sabres GM Jason Botterill and few around the league are surprised by this. With Zach Bogosian needing hip surgery, Buffalo is primed to take a long look at Letang, NHL execs contend.
Botterill thinks the world of Letang as a person and player and in a do or die year for the GM, Buffalo tops the list of teams that should gamble on Letang. The pressure is on Botterill, he can’t be making future moves anymore. He has to get in the playoffs to save his job.
You have a situation in Buffalo where they have that long-term franchise caliber defenseman in place in Rasmus Dahlin, a top-2 pairing puck mover in Brandon Montour entering prime and adding Letang would give Buffalo that true third difference maker (offensively) on the backend that could also open the door to trading Rasmus Ristolainen for coveted No. 2 center, something Botterill had on the table at the deadline but eventually pulled back.
Hiring the defensive minded guru Ralph Krueger, who has emerged as the favorite in Buffalo, could also add a wrinkle in Buffalo that Krueger could be the coach and change of scenery situation where changes to Letang’s game for the better could be implemented.
From Pittsburgh’s end, they shouldn’t be against taking a futures deal for Letang and Buffalo’s the team to look at it.
Buffalo owns two first round picks. League sources say Botterill has pressure to move the Sharks first round pick for immediate help in 2019-2020.
For Jim Rutherford, though, if you went the futures and cap relief route in trading Letang, the priority should be on adding a talented NHL ready prospect who can help and potentially flourish right now than a late first round pick as the main piece to a deal.
In this scenario, Alexander Nylander, a 2016 1st round pick (8th overall) who the Sabres brass has started to sour on is the type of talented player Pittsburgh should be looking at to[/hide] plug on the right wing in the top-6 on an entry level deal for the next two years with a likely departure of To read this insider news, subscribe to get “Inside Access”!
Come back in June for new content.
that seems rather optimistic
Look of the three core guys from the Penguins rumored to be dealt…probably Kessel will go! I would like to see Malkin go its time for geno…(Rangers Montreal Vancouver Nashville) his wife is like a celebrity something so… If the Penguins are ever going to do this now is the time or its never going to happen. He is still a point a game player, he is still elite, he just not dominant anymore (he also is still dumb as fuck and lazy as shit) -25 84 turnovers 89 penalty minutes take a good return and move on clear some… Read more »
Dont tell that to stan and zero. They seem to be satisfied from his boxscore stats all they see is his points and the parts that he hurts the team
They should’ve shipped his lazy asss by 30 years old when he had more valued and wasn’t as exposed as a fraud
Carolina fans are so loud that their team is eliminated. If this was penguins fans arena would’ve been half empty by the time they would be down 2-0. And many TVs would be turned off
Thanks for the update Stan.
You’ve never been to the arena…
Compelling and rich.
Sam(e) is still crying over MAF’s traditional post season meltdown.
You shouldn’t talk since your Russian took a full season vacation and once again he led team in penalties.
This week he is my Russian… I am not the one who comes on here and does nothing but bash the team and slurps the Canadians and the Knights. Go cry to your mama.
Let’s see the NHL talk their way out of this one. That was a hand pass!!
It’s insane how inept professional leagues are at managing challenges. Kind of wishthey just went back to nothing. It’s a joke that that didn’t get called back but the Landeskog offsides goal did. They made the right call there, but it should have been the same with the hand pass. After the goal, check it out. Or just take it all away and play the game.
I have been hearing Letang for McDavid, Nurse, and Edmontons first round picks for the next 6 years.
Thanks for the update stan
Did you seriously plus 5 yourself ? Lol… which account did you use?
This site is crumbling like the democratic party
Even here in Canada liberals are not doing so good lately. ZeroTool must be depressed his boy Toy beta male Trudeau might not get elected for 2nd term
Naw, looking forward to a government that may finally treat PQ like the monetary blackhole it’s always been. When those funds dry up your mom will have to double shift to pay for your daycare and 3 accounts. You may have to start turning tricks yourself
This might be the worst penguins insight ever. Both of those trade scenarios are ludicrous. Rutherford should be shot for making either of those trades.
Both of those trade scenarios get the Pens younger and better. Keep crying.
Crying? Like you did over Fleury all those years. Remember how unglued you’d get when I called him a Mental Midget. Tucked in tight by yout mommy in your MAF PJs…Dude, getting 31 year old Petry for letang is not getting “younger and better”: There is no depth to your stupidity, starting with the fact you were the biggest Mental Midget apologist on this site for years. You didnt know hockey then and you dont know hockey now. Forget what you think of Letang, Rutherford will never make either of those trades. If Im wrong, I leave this site. If… Read more »
Now you’re crying and making stuff up. Incredible! Remember you wanted to start Zatkoff in the playoffs over Murray and Fleury? That was a great call. You incessantly complain like a toddler about everybody in every sport. You, Sam and Dusty have to be related. There’s no way you three morons could end up on the same obscure message board. Lol you’re pathetic. I love watching you clowns post. When I have a bad day, I could just come on here and relish in the fact that I’m not a depressing crybaby with an IQ south of 80. Come on,… Read more »
Do we have a deal Fleury PJ boy? If Letang is traded under either of DePaoli’s ridiculous scenarios I’m gone. if not, you’re gone…..deal?
I’m sorry. Apparently I gave you the impression I care about anything you have to say. That’s on me. I couldn’t care less if you’re here or not. And obviously neither one of those deals will happen. I doubt Letang will even get traded. So you can carry on knowing you will have this outlet allowing you to unleash your tears on every Pittsburgh sports transaction.
You’re such a sad sack of shiiit. “Both of those trade scenariios get the Penguins younger and better” -Midget PJ Boy 1 day and 12 hours ago…Now you say neither scenario will happen (parroting my initial comment) and doubt Letang will get traded. Good, now you’ll stop your whinning about Letang.
Whining*. Of everyone, I would expect you to know how to spell that. It’s also kind of weird that you’re so concerned with my night time attire. Looks like the maloni tears are endless. I never said those trades would happen, only that I would favor them. Petry is still a tad younger and hasn’t had near the injuries. We’d also be getting a second rounder in that deal. Man, do you struggle.
So you admit you still wear your MAF PJs.
How would you guys feel about Eberle? Top 6 winger coming off a down year production-wise. Plays a good two-way game and has a lot of offensive ability. He’s the type of guy that could really work well with 71 IMO.
Do it yesterday!!!
There have been rumours letang might waive his trade clause to go to Montreal. But petry is garbage he is way worse turnover machine then letang. Plays few games good and plays long stretch of shitt games we already have Russian and chubby doing that now adding another part time player will hurt penguins
His house was just put up for sale – not sure if that means anything
Not a rumor – look it up bitches
Thanks Rich! Made my night better.
Sam(e) will go there just to go through Letang’s underwear draw and smell his dirty laundry.
Rumor has it, he was nose deep!
The only player from Montreal I’m excepting for Letang (if as you say he might waive his MNC for Montreal) is Brendan Gallagher…Petry dish sucks….
Yeah but Brandon is the heart of the team and is the hornqvist of the habs doubt habs would trade him
Which team should gamble on our Russian
Montreal or Vegas.
Sam(e) probably came in his cereal when he read this.
don’t worry about the pens top 6. they have simon and aston reese. nylander would be on the 3rd line to acheive proper balance. F the top 6.
Glad someone in the media is realistic about him. Letang and Montreal would be a match made in heaven. A bumbling, short-sighted organization trading for an injury prone, wreckless dman on the down side of his career. Would love the Petry deal, as that would give us him, Dumo and Schultz to anchor the defense. Just need to shed some cap on the back end to round everything out in FA.
Trading Letang to Montreal would guarantee another decade without the Cup for the Canadiens. Love it.