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Dan’s Daily: Eichel Agents Shred Sabres, Penguins Offseason Analysis

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Pittsburgh Penguins Jeff Carter, Michael Houser, NHL trade

The game of Hungry Hungry Hippos that NHL GMs played on Wednesday has focused the hockey news this weekend. Teams snapped up most of the big names, and teams did it so quickly that I promise you’ll be watching a game in October and exclaim, “I didn’t know he signed there!” It happens to the best of us. In the Daily, Jack Eichel’s agents ripped the Buffalo Sabres pretty well, more NHL trade chatter, and we analyzed the Pittsburgh Penguins offseason.

Are the Penguins intentionally taking a step back?

Pittsburgh Hockey Now: The column went semi-viral because it spurred a lot of good discussions. I was happy about that–it wasn’t hyperbolic or vitriolic. The Penguins are worse off, which doesn’t fit with “win now.” Why?

Here’s a direct comparison of the Penguins offseason vs. their Metro Division rivals.

Vegas: I know you’re still following it, trying to will Marc-Andre Fleury to Pittsburgh. I hated to report that Fleury wasn’t coming back, though I’m glad the Post-Gazette did a full story. It provided me some cover! Now a report that Fleury will report to Chicago.  

NHL Trade Chatter & National Hockey Now:

UPDATE: Maple Leafs Hot Stove: Toronto fans seemed pretty pleased the Toronto Maple Leafs added power forward, but non-qualified UFA Nick Ritchie on an affordable two-year deal. 

The Athletic: There are two big names on the market. Vladimir Tarasenko is the other. The St. Louis Blues signed Brandon Saad to a healthy free-agent deal. Jeremy Rutherford believes that means a Tarasenko trade is soon.

TSN: Eiche’s agents released a statement to the media ripping the organization and process. That’s where we are with Eichel. 

Buffalo’s ask is too much. No one has the capital to get it done. Four BIG pieces, including a first-round pick. It’s on the high end of fair, but no one will cripple their team for a player who needs risky back surgery.

Vegas: Interesting–Alex Tuch will be out for six months, and Vegas GM Kelly McCrimmon asked Ryan Reaves where he wanted to be traded before dealing him to the Rangers. McCrimmon was in communication while it happened.

Yeah, umm, about Fleury?? A rival GM called McCrimmon a choice name. I didn’t like that my colleague Jimmy Murphy printed the quote on Twitter, but it was fascinating that a GM would allow that conversation on the record. Vegas is getting a bit of a rep.

NHL.com: The Blue Jackets signed Zach Werenski to a hefty new six-year contract. 

Boston: David Krejci called it an NHL career. The only free agent center to score more than 40 points will head home to play in the Czech Republic. 

Sportsnet: Charles Barkley helped convince Wayne Gretzky to take the TNT analyst gig. Now you know who to blame. 

National Hockey Now:

Washington: Alex Ovechkin has learned English well enough to use some country slang after his new contract, “I don’t wanna go nowhere!”

Philly: The Flyers signed bought-out goalie Martin Jones to backup/push Carter Hart. Other names were on the market. Did Chuck Fletcher make the right call?

NYI: NHL trade scuttle is the Islanders may have to trad Anthony Beauvillier for a defenseman. Stefan Rosner says–big mistake. 

FLA: I know Penguins fans wanted Sam Bennett via the NHL trade market. He’s now a Florida Panther for a long time–and he’s quite happy about it. 

Det: The Red Wings lost Darren Helm via free agency this week–the last member of that 2008 Stanley Cup team that skated with the Cup on Pittsburgh ice. 

Colorado: Making sense of the Avalanche offseason. It’s been great and rough at different times. 

San Jose: Bonino, Bonino, Bonino! The San Jose Sharks snagged Nick Bonino, Andrew Cogliano, and James Reimer. But are they right for the Sharks? 

Vancouver: The Canucks and GM Jim Benning hit the free-agent market for a bunch of names you’ve heard but are borderline NHL players. They signed two-way deals. Vancouver’s AHL team should be dynamite. 

Lastly, THANK YOU! Pittsburgh Hockey Now met with a business advisor on Friday as the first step to some heavy-duty expansion and upgrades. Great things are coming, and your readership and participation are the reason. It’s nice to be able to go for a slice of pizza and not check my bank balance first. That wasn’t the case three years ago when were started this pipe dream.

The network is exploding, and people want to be a part of it. I won’t let you down. I promise.

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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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Jasonc
1 month ago

Congratulations on the business Dan good for you! So the pens are tanking this season I don’t quite understand why they would do that when the Penguins window is almost most closed each year is so valuable right now? What happened to getting heavy and getting guys that are physical and staying competitive? Thanks Dan for all the great work been here almost as long as you have started glad you hear of your success!

TartanBill
TartanBill
1 month ago

Curious, Ritche seems like the kind of player the Pens would have tried to replace McCann with. Comparable production, but bigger.

Katz
Katz
1 month ago

Here’s a fairly believable scenario which may have in some form occurred. Sullivan, Burke, Hextall and perhaps others met to discuss future, the Cap, expansion, and Free agents . Burke expressed his view of size snd “truculence” . Sullivan expressed that he only wants players who can skate and are responsible in his “system” Sullivan won the battle but I believe lost the war. This roster is on Sullivan not Hextall. The league is bigger and more physical. Vasilivskia , Price , Fleury all great AND had big physical Dmen clearing the crease. None would have been nearly successful in… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Katz
Mark Fisher
Mark Fisher
1 month ago
Reply to  Katz

Good shrooms! Where do you get them?

Ken Colligan
1 month ago
Reply to  Katz

More truth to this than not. Sully not a Hextall guy. If things go south he will
feel the wrath. One thing that is clear is that there is no clear direction when it comes to building the roster. That usually means much infighting behind the scenes.

Cal
Cal
1 month ago
Reply to  Katz

Yeah I’ve wondered about Sully calling the shots on what players are on the team, interesting take for sure.

Rob
Rob
1 month ago
Reply to  Katz

Just because Simon was the first reported signing doesn’t mean that he was the first they looked at signing 🙄 Its a 2 way deal as well. I don’t get why you are being so negative. Everyone was saying the exact same type of stuff about this team last season. OOPS, they won the division. A lot of things will have to go wrong for this team to not make the playoffs. A lot went wrong last season and they still won the division. My point is this is basically the same team as last season and anything can happen.… Read more »

Rob
Rob
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

To be fair, your predicted scenario could happen as well under my anything can happen rule, but you are looking at a worst case scenario there

Katz
Katz
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

Please name one playoff team they could defeat in a 7 game series? NYI get Lee back. Boston? Tampa? Montreal? There is not one they could beat in my opinion.
This season is for the Draft and if they trade away their 1st again they deserve the long dark hockey purgatory they will enter. My advice is make some money on their failure. Wager them to not make the playoffs.

Katz
Katz
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

The regular season is devalued and only has significance for revenue snd making the playoffs. I wrote ‘ it’s all about the playoffs ‘ and this team is only built for the regular season. I wasn’t the least bit surprised they lost again in the First Round, indeed I wrote they would again. Now I do not believe they will even make the playoffs , quite the contrary. Sullivan has a very stubborn ‘Glory Days’ mental framework. He still wants players and systems that worked for two Cups to work their magic again. He hasn’t learned a thing from 3… Read more »

Rob
Rob
1 month ago
Reply to  Katz

I do agree with that one point at least. Sully clearly is having trouble making adjustments. Very reminiscent of Dan Bylsma. Also, with his “guys” like you point out. Bylsma threw Craig Adams out there way too much! Lol Simon i am not worried about too much. Its not like they have much better players in the system and him being here will hold them back. At most, he will push players like Lafferty and Angello to be better or be in the press box. I think your frustration comes from wanting a full rebuild and not getting it? For… Read more »

Rob
Rob
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

For the record, i would rather see the winning regular season team lose in the first round forever vs rebuilding. No more Rico Fata and Ramzi Abid please! Put that off as long as possible!

Katz
Katz
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

I think your frustration comes from wanting a full rebuild and not getting it?
________

No Rob, it’s the opposite . Had the hard but correct decisions been made a few years ago a total rebuild was unnecessary.
And if Sullivan had adapted to the league after the league adapted to him , this team could have remained playoff competitive.
Unforced errors which I’m well on record delineating needn’t have occurred. But now it’s time to eat your peas.

Rob
Rob
1 month ago
Reply to  Katz

Its easy with the power of hindsight to make all these tough choices huh?

C Daniel
C Daniel
1 month ago

With the NHN expansion perhaps there’s enough money and work that you could employ someone to moderate the comments across the HN sites.

Chase Ranson
Chase Ranson
1 month ago

I agree Todd Reirdon becomes the head coach fall out for the poor season coming this year

Joe Cursi
Joe Cursi
1 month ago

Congrats on your success!

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