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Penguins Trade Talk

Is there a Pending Penguins Trade for Blue-Chip Winger?

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Vitaly Kravtsov Pittsburgh Penguins trade rumor

The New York Rangers have stockpiled talent in recent years, and much of it is maturing and reaching the next levels at similar times. The Pittsburgh Penguins are short on blue-chip prospects and could desperately use more talent in waiting, which brings us to a rumored Penguins trade.

We strongly caution against the tendency to accept rumors as gospel. The rumors are sweeping Russia and appear in Sport-Express, a credentialed outlet with a reporter stationed in Pittsburgh. However, translated Russian media is notoriously misunderstood or sometimes unreliable.

The interview took place on Wednesday, Nov. 22.

According to the Russian rumors, the 2018 New York first-round pick (9th overall), Vitaly Kravtsov, would be the Penguins trade acquisition. The 20-year-old winger split last season between the AHL and KHL.

From a first-hand exchange between a Sport-Express interview and Kravtsov:

Reporter: “I heard that an exchange is possible. Even the name of your new club, Pittsburgh, flashed.”

Kravtsov: “I can’t say anything about this.”

The response is open to interpretation. Does Kravtsov not know anything about the rumor, or did he decline to address a potential trade? Here is the full interview. 

If GM Jim Rutherford and the Penguins trade for Kravtsov, it would dramatically alter their offseason and perhaps the team.

In 39 AHL games, Kravtsov scored 15 points, including six goals. Before making the jump to North America, he was in his third KHL season.

According to multiple scouting reports, Kravtsov, 6-foot-3 and 189 pounds, is a three-position forward with good skates, offensive gifts including slick hands, and even some defensive awareness. He was recently named to the Russian national team, too.

The Rangers informed Kravtsov they would not invite him to training camp, which the NHL tentatively scheduled to begin next month. That was before the coronavirus second wave, and CBA renegotiations threw the NHL return into doubt.

According to Kravtsov, New York wants him to play more, and the full KHL season offered a better opportunity than the pending 35-game AHL season.

Realistically, the Penguins trade for Kravtsov would be costly. New York selected him between Adam Boqvist and Evan Bouchard, and his star has not faded. The Penguins prospect pool is not deep, but a 2018 first-rounder, especially a top-10 pick, will not come cheap. So, we’ll continue to watch closely as the NHL attempts a return and perhaps the Pittsburgh Penguins attempt to acquire a top prospect.

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Pittsburgh Hockey Now Editor-in-Chief, formerly 93.7 The Fan, Sportsnet Hockey Tonight, NHL Home Ice. Catch Dan tweeting @theDanKingerski and the official @pghhockeynow account.

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Steve
Steve
10 months ago

I can’t think of anybody on the Pens roster the Rangers would want ( realistically) Zucker?

Kurt Hartz
Kurt Hartz
10 months ago
Reply to  Steve

Or John Marino?

Steve
Steve
10 months ago
Reply to  Kurt Hartz

I gotta imagine he’s a non starter? And although it might make some sense, the Rangers have this wild pipeline of young defensemen who may come up. It’s doubtful they trade for another young one. I would imagine Rust would be the guy to go.

Brian
Brian
10 months ago

Jared McCann + riikola for kravtsov would make sense…

Donn Feyche
Donn Feyche
10 months ago
Reply to  Brian

I don’t think you have to worry about the NYR trading a still legitimate prospect for a 3rd liner (or 4th on some teams) plus a D who can’t make the Pens’ roster

Alex
Alex
10 months ago

I mean I’d love for him to join the squad, he’d be a perfect bottom six guy for us in the mold of a ZAR but probably better offensively, idk much about his defense though

Michael Hanczar
Michael Hanczar
10 months ago

Sounds like Morozov revisited. Stats are underwhelming. Can’t be giving up much to pick him up.

JcNorthStar
JcNorthStar
10 months ago

Hey Dan if this rumor is true that would change the dynamic of this pens team, who would the pens have to give up to get this deal done?

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[…] wait for that news, we shall. But you can read the report of Russian chatter about a Penguins trade […]

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