[hide]The Pittsburgh Penguins in the summer of 2021 prioritized protecting Teddy Blueger over the likes of Jared McCann and Brandon Tanev. They viewed Blueger’s defensive prowess, two-way instincts and what they felt at the time that Blueger was primed to emerge into a regular 15-18 a year goal scorer over the next couple seasons. Blueger totaled 9 goals in 65 games in 2021-2022, producing at an 11 goal pace over 82 games. This season Blueger’s goal scoring production has been as bad as it gets with 1 goal in 22 games.
Head coach Mike Sullivan played a pivotal role in the Penguins protecting Blueger as Seattle planned to select Blueger and Sullivan, according to sources remains extremely high on Blueger. The front office, though, is starting to sour on the 28 year old. A major point of discussion is the front office wants to see Jeff Carter moved to right wing but the team’s top decision makers no longer feel Blueger can produce enough offensively to justify a full-time third line center role. The Penguins know they have to have three legitimate scoring lines to be serious threat in the East. As much as the Penguins, especially the coaching staff like Blueger, his name is starting to come up around the league that Pittsburgh appears open to discussions in moving Blueger who over the summer sought around $4 million per season during brief preliminary contract extension talks. Unlike Kasperi Kapanen who the Penguins will have to attach assets too, that wouldn’t be the case with Blueger. Blueger is widely viewed as carrying value if Pittsburgh needs space to add another top-9 forward and/or want to accumulate an asset.
The interest from the Seattle Kraken remains just as strong it was in the summer of 2021 as many inside the Penguins organization view Seattle as a top contender to sign Blueger this summer. [/hide]
Former Pens Excelling in Seattle
- Jared McCann | 17 goals in 33 Games
- Daniel Sprong | 11 Goals, 11 Assists in 29 Games
- Brandon Tanev | 19 Points in 36 Games
- Justin Schultz | 19 Points in 34 Games [/hide]