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Assessing Tristan Jarry’s Real Penguins Trade Value

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Pittsburgh Penguins, Tristan Jarry. Trade value

Recently, he has been a scourge, not worth keeping, or not as good as career backups, at least according to the paying public. It was a wild up-and-down season in which many fans begrudgingly admitted Pittsburgh Penguins goalie Tristan Jarry had rebounded from a difficult 2022-23 season. Then, they quickly took back the mea culpas after the team freefall in late February and March, instead constructing the figurative tracks by which to run Jarry out of town.

It’s June, and things are changing.

Over the last 72 hours, fan opinion of Jarry has taken a hard left turn into the land of confusion by way of whiplash lane. Never mind that for most of the season, the tandem of Jarry and Alex Nedeljkovic were contenders for the Jennings Trophy, given to the goaltending tandem with the fewest goals allowed. Skip over the admission that Jarry was, on far too many nights, the best Penguins player and a primary reason the Penguins had a chance to win despite abysmal team performances.

Let’s gloss over a pair of All-Star Game appearances, too.

Now that goalies are being traded for king’s ransoms, truckloads full of value, and eye-popping returns, Penguins fans want in. Jacob Markstrom, who is 34, fetched a near-historic return for goalies of his age as the Calgary Flames netted a 2025 first-rounder and a solid 23-year-old stay-home defenseman capable of top-four minutes (Kevin Bahl) from the New Jersey Devils.

Goalie Linus Ullmark is next on the NHL trade block, and the Boston Bruins’ asking price is reportedly astronomical. Anaheim’s John Gibson and Nahsville’s Juuse Saros are other possibilities, but their teams keep dangling them seemingly without much intention of trading them.

What if Jarry becomes available? The thought has crossed many fans’ minds, but now the ask has changed from a salary dump in exchange for the satisfaction of launching him into the sun to expecting an extreme overpay.

It’s a dichotomy that is possible only in the emotional realm of sports. With merit, fans focus on Jarry’s late-season collapses. This season, he fell from a save percentage hovering just below .920 to a final .903 stopper rate and didn’t start the team’s final 13 games.

For the final weeks of the season, Alex Nedeljkovic was in the starting net as the team made a mad dash to the finish line, hoping to erase a season of self-destruction. They nearly succeeded, and Nedeljkovic got some credit for bringing some attitude and fight to the Penguins’ psyche.

It was Pittsburgh Hockey Now that asked coach Mike Sullivan if he believed in the hockey axion that teams can begin to reflect their goalie’s personality. Sullivan didn’t shy away from the effect he believed Nedeljkovic was having on the team.

However, Jarry is no less than the lead goalie in the tandem for the 2024-25 season.

So what is that goalie with talent but mismatched results worth on the NHL trade market?

Jarry Trade Value

First, Jarry will not command the value that Markstom did on the trade market. Markstrom has had some rough seasons over the last few campaigns, but his reputation has evolved into that of an impact goalie.

Sidenote: His time in Vancouver was marked by high save percentages, but questions about his ability to get Vancouver over the hump–not dissimilar from Jarry’s current reputation. His last four seasons with Calgary have been marked by backstopping lesser teams to greater success.

*It is a seller’s market. Recent trade history will be a baseline, not a ceiling. A struggling starter can usually net (no pun intended) at least a second or third-round pick based on pedigree. Fading starters such as Devan Dubnyk (2015) and Jake Allen (2024) commanded a third-rounder.

*Teams in desperate need can grab a goalie they believe will get them to the promised land. In the summer before the 2021-22 season, the Colorado Avalanche sent a first (2022), a third (2024), and promising prospect Connor Timmons to Arizona (Utah) for Darcy Kuemper. The move brought the Avalanche the 2022 Stanley Cups, though Kuemper was soft during the Cup run and allowed to depart via free agency that summer.

However, salaries also affect trade costs. Lower-salaried goalies make deals easier and can fetch higher returns than similar goalies with higher salaries.

*In the summer of 2022, Vegas Golden Knights GM Kelly McCrimmon made a fateful trade for a depth goalie thought to be a backup. Vegas acquired Adin Hill from San Jose for a fourth-rounder. Hill carried a $2.1 million cap hit for a San Jose Sharks team that had no aspirations and other goalies. Hill’s salary depressed San Jose’s trade haul.

Other goalie deals to note:

*Marc-Andre Fleury traded from Chicago to Minnesota for a second-round pick at the 2023 NHL trade deadline.

*After a promising rookie year in 2020-21 that was a few years in the making, Carolina traded Nedeljkovic to Detroit for a backup goalie and a third-round pick.

*And with some irony, perhaps the best, most comparable trade to note was also in 2021 involving the Penguins. Former GM Jim Rutherford traded goalie Matt Murray–whom Jarry nudged aside–to Ottawa for a second-round pick and prospect Jonathan Gruden.

Using the Murray deal and adding a premium for “Market price,” Jarry is worth a second-rounder and a middle-tier prospect, perhaps a serviceable NHL player.

Is that enough for the Penguins president of hockey operations to ship away Jarry and take his chances with Nedeljkovic and top prospect Joel Blomqvist? Only if you subscribe to the newsletter written by a portion of the fanbase that thinks Jarry is a problem.

Otherwise, the likely trade haul isn’t enough to offset the gamble that would be installing Nedeljkovic as a No. 1 goalie, signing a mediocre backup (all that’s available on the UFA market), or thrusting Blomqvist into NHL duty, ready or not.

So expect continued and unfettered bashing but demands for top-tier trade returns, at least into next summer.