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Let’s Make a Deal: Assessing Penguins’ History of Trades at Draft (+)

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PITTSBURGH, PA - DECEMBER 15: Pittsburgh Penguins Right Wing Phil Kessel (81) looks on during the second period in the NHL game between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Los Angeles Kings on December 15, 2018, at PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh, PA. (Photo by Jeanine Leech/Icon Sportswire)

History shows that there’s a pretty good chance there will be at least one Pittsburgh Penguins trade while the NHL Draft is in progress at the Bell Centre in Montreal July 7-8.

It also tells us that chances are the deal(s) will not have a profound impact on the franchise, since most of the ones clubs negotiate at the draft involve swapping mid-to-late-round choices. (Everyone remembers exactly where they were when news broke that the Penguins had shipped their fifth-rounder in 2020 to Colorado for the Avalanche’s Nos. 5 and 7 selections that year, right?)

Still, there have been some significant Penguins trades in the days leading up to, during, and shortly after the draft. Coincidentally or otherwise, they seem to have a particular knack for acquiring productive right wingers in those deals, including Joe Mullen (1990), Patric Hornqvist (2014), and Phil Kessel (2015).

Here’s a look at the most important Pittsburgh Penguins trades at and around the draft:

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