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The 7 Penguins Who Won’t Be Traded

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Pittsburgh Penguins, Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin

It’s the offseason. The Pittsburgh Penguins were not invited to the Stanley Cup Playoffs, and there will be changes. Exactly how president of hockey operations/GM Kyle Dubas manages to escape his straitjacket and locked trunk in the form of players’ no-movement clauses and player no-trade values is part of the magic trick everyone is waiting to see.

Of course, a few players can be quickly removed from the NHL trade chatter. Sidney Crosby, Kris Letang, and Evgeni Malkin. The trio made a stand to stay together for the ride to the end, and unless one of them asks to be traded, it’s not going to happen.

They have full no-movement clauses as well as a continued organizational commitment to building around them once again. Whether you like it or not, and there is definitely a section of the paying public who does not, the players are committed to the path.

Malkin has two years remaining, and soon to be 38 years old, decline is gaining on him like a dogged backchecker. It would be the most unlikely trade in years to see him finish his career elsewhere. The trio do have three Stanley Cup rings, and chasing a fourth at the expense of their goal of finishing their careers together is a no-go.

4 More Penguins Who Won’t Be Traded

Erik Karlsson

He makes four Penguins not on the trade block … unless he asks. The silky smooth skating defenseman did not exactly meet all potential in his first year with the Penguins, scoring only 56 points after his epic 100-point run in 2022-23 with the San Jose Sharks, but Dubas acquired Karlsson to shake up the Penguins roster.

He remains a supremely talented weapon from the blue line, and Dubas has, on multiple occasions, included Karlsson when discussing the Penguins’ core.

Bryan Rust

The Penguins’ scrappy winger, with a big heart, sizable contract, and ability to score 25 goals per season, also has a no-movement clause. Later in the season, there was a rumor that Rust would be asked to waive his NMC, but all involved shot it down without equivocation or hesitation.

Rust turned 32 on Saturday and has four years remaining on a contract with an average annual value of $5.125 million. He made a run at 30 goals this season, finishing with 28 goals and 56 points.

As the salary cap goes up, his production and value look even better.

Tristan Jarry

Sure, anything is possible, and Jarry’s new contract lacks a full NMC. Instead, Jarry has a 12-team no-trade list. However, he’s also the Penguins starting goalie.

His late-season benching does not add good vibes to the situation, but Dubas’s end-of-season presser made it pretty clear that Jarry was the guy who was sticking around.

Jarry’s late-season struggles make it highly unlikely that another team would come calling with an offer Dubas couldn’t refuse. Stranger things have happened, and NHL GMs are known to become slightly, if not completely, irrational, but Jarry also has four years remaining on his new contract with a $5.375 million AAV.

However, ask again at the 2025 NHL trade deadline or next summer as top prospect Joel Blomqvist prepares to make the big show.

Michael Bunting

The bookend to Rust.

Bunting, 28,  is also a speedy, scrappy winger with a taste for creating a little bit of chaos near the opponent’s net.

He counts $4.5 million against the salary cap in each of the next two seasons, which is an easily affordable number for a top-six winger who provides a missing element.

Adding more trade insulation, the team acquired Bunting at the deadline as part of the Jake Guentzel deal. He didn’t disappoint and was a significant contributor to the Penguins’ frantic stretch run that nearly culminated in a historic comeback and playoff berth.

Bunting chipped in six goals and 19 points in 21 games.

Bonus: Drew O’Connor

If Dubas chases a big name on the NHL trade block this summer, rival GMs will ask for O’Connor, and they’d be fools not to. O’Connor, 25, is young, fast, and has improved in every season.

He also makes only $925,000 next season before being eligible for unrestricted free agency. His offensive totals haven’t yet caught up to his potential, but they’re rising. This season, O’Connor scored 16 goals with 33 points in 79 games.

At that salary, he’s not just a bargain but could become a Black Friday doorbuster. There’s no logical reason for Dubas to shop O’Connor unless the return is a headline grabber.

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King Penguin
King Penguin
13 days ago

If Jarry is as good as the Yinzer media have told us over the years, then the management wonks will have plenty of trade offers to choose from this off-season.

Jason
Jason
11 days ago
Reply to  King Penguin

That makes no sense. It takes two to make a trade why in the hell would the opposing team want him

King Penguin
King Penguin
11 days ago
Reply to  Jason

Because Jarry is one of the best in the biz, we’ve been told over and over again.

Uros
Uros
13 days ago

Well, the phones won’t be ringing as we have nothing to offer. What we’d like to trade, nobody wants. If anything, phones should be ringing elsewhere as Pens will call to beg others to take at least someone off their hands. The little that someone may desire is on this list of those that won’t be traded. But it’s nothing that Dubas can’t fix with some waiver claims.

David
David
12 days ago
Reply to  Uros

Get rid of Jarry as soon as possible. He’s terrible. I can’t believe the powers to be can’t see what all of us see. Open your eyes. JARRY STINKS!!!!

Jason
Jason
11 days ago
Reply to  David

How do you get rid of him? Who would want him and the contract? Make that make sense

Aaron Hermann
Aaron Hermann
12 days ago

The fact Dubas added the 12 team NTC on top of the five year deal is what I find particularly bothersome. I get that it was definitely a thin goalie market last year but a 12 team NTC for a goalie who has yet to win a playoff series and is nearly 30 years old with documented “issues” in the second half of seasons is just poor form bordering on managerial negligence.

I’ll admit to being very excited when the Pens signed Dubas – but now – I’m not so sure.

Thelittlemonkee
Thelittlemonkee
12 days ago

Bring in swingee

Steve
Steve
12 days ago

I think we should keep running the same team back year after year, albeit much older, and then discuss why the results haven’t been better than the previous 6 years. I really look forward to that again this upcoming season. What is the. Penguins ceiling right now? A 6 seed? Maybe?

DaGama
DaGama
12 days ago

Jarry to Edmonton for the Oilers spare team bus.

DMR
DMR
12 days ago
Reply to  DaGama

After tonight’s loss, Edmonton would make that trade!

Jason
Jason
11 days ago
Reply to  DMR

How could they afford the contract with all the high price guys they have now

Rich81
Rich81
12 days ago

Karlsson & Jarry should not be. Karlsson, very talented player, not the right fit here. Myth, Karlsson was an excellent PP guy in his career-Facts, look at the stats. You can find someone that fits your plan better. Jarry, I would send him to the 1st team that has interest. Starting goalie, so what? If anyone has been watching the playoffs and see the goalies out there, this guy should not be on anyones protected list. Mentally, SAWFT!! This guy has been given more chances to turn it around than a fella that cheating spouse who claims he will never… Read more »

Last edited 12 days ago by Rich81
Knobman
Knobman
11 days ago

This article put a major dent into my armchair GMing.