Latest Penguins Buzz

[1. Pens, Sabres talking more than just Kulikov?]
[2.Yakupov available for a 6th rounder]
[3. Rust Latest]
[4. Julien lands massive deal]
[5. Fleury drops on trade bait list]

Multi-player deal being mulled?

Is there more than just a potential rental trade acquisition brewing between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Buffalo Sabres?

[hide]I’d put this in the unlikely category for now but one league executive tells me the Penguins are said to have looked into the asking price for winger Evander Kane as Pittsburgh scouting the Sabres heavily goes beyond just defenseman Dmitry Kulikov.

Kane, 25, has one year left on his deal with a $5.25 million cap hit.

Kane with 18 goals and 28 points on the season, has not evolved into the premier 30+ goal a year power forward many thought he would three years ago but Penguin scouts regard him as one of the best fore-checking wingers in the NHL and the organization has always been intrigued about Kane, despite the off-ice baggage.

While Pittsburgh has made Olli Maatta to specific teams, there’s no indication at this point Buffalo is one of them.

Nonetheless, the highest scoring team in the NHL continues to poke around at the winger market beyond Matt Duchene who tops their wishlist.

Yeo not a fan of Yakupov

— 2012 1st overall pick Nail Yakupov is a healthy scratch for the fifth straight game tonight and is available for as low as a sixth round pick, per NHL sources. St. Louis wants to move any salary they can off their books for this season even. Yakupov has 3 goals and 3 assists in 31 games and carries a $2.5 million cap hit. He is a restricted free agent at seasons end and surely won’t be tendered. The Penguins had some interest in Yakupov early in the 2014-2015 season but have not pursued Yakupov since.

Will Therrien emerge in Vegas?

— Despite all the chatter leading up to his dismissal on Tuesday, the Michel Therrien firing did come as a shock to many and even caught top NHL insiders like Bob McKenzie by surprise.

It will be interesting if Therrien gets another NHL look quickly as in the summer or is waiting a while for another shot. Opinions about him from General Managers are all over the map. Say what you want about the guy but he can build teams up quickly.

Vegas should be first in line but Golden Knights GM George McPhee is keen on hiring Jack Capuano or Gerard Gallant, the two front runners for the job.

Maybe things play out and Therrien ends up replacing Dan Bylsma in Buffalo within the next year or so.

Rust Update Coming

— An update on Bryan Rust is expected from the team tomorrow or Friday, a source says. Prior to getting a second opinion on Tuesday, the team had been bracing for Rust to miss at least six weeks, if surgery is not needed.

Julien lands major deal

— Coaching salaries are seeing a significant spike since Mike Babcock’s 8 year, $50 million mega contract with the Leafs, something Babcock had hoped would happen when he was a free agent in the summer of 2015.

Pierre LeBrun reports Claude Julien got a massive 5 year, $25 million coaching deal with the Canadiens that makes him the third highest paid coach in the NHL. Julien was making $3 million with the Bruins. Therrien’s salary was around $2.5 million.

6 Games for Nyquist

— NHL Department of Player Safety never surprises in how they rule.

Fleury No. 20

Fleury drops to 20 on TSN’s Trade Bait List

1. Kevin Shattenkirk
2. Matt Duchene
3. Martin Hanzal
4. Patrick Eaves
5. Michael Stone
6. Radim Vrbata
7. Gabriel Landeskog
8. Ben Bishop
9. Evander Kane
10. Brian Boyle
11. Patrick Berglund
12. Patrick Sharp
13. Thomas Vanek
14. Anthony Duclair
15. Ondrej Pavelec
16. Dmitry Kulikov
17. Jordan Eberle
18. Shane Doan
19. Jarome Iginla
20 Marc Andre Fleury[/hide]