NHL Rumors II: Pittsburgh Penguins – Day Two Of Potential Changes

  • Pat Pickens of SportsNet: Four things to expect from the Penguins:

    1. Housecleaning: Dan Bylsma will likely take the fall. Their depth wasn’t strong enough to overcome the injuries to Pascal Dupuis and Brooks Orpik. Addition of Lee Stempniak at the deadline didn’t help much.

    2. A blockbuster: They could look to move Kris Letang and his $7.25 million salary cap hit. The Penguins may be regretting trading Jordan Staal. A Ryan Kesler deal at the deadline may have helped. Could a deal between the Penguins and Canucks involving Kesler and Letang be made?

    3. Plenty of walking: Jussi Jokinen is a free agent. They will need to re-sign Brian Gibbons. Matt Niskanen will likely leave for more money. Brooks Orpik may also be gone as they look to get younger. It may be time to get younger on the blueline.

    4. A change in net: Marc-Andre Fleury did play well at times, but did let in some questionable goals in the final four games. They are happy with a .915 save percentage and 2.40 goals against average, he’s their guy. If they expect more, they’ll need to look elsewhere.

  • Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: A decision on GM Ray Shero’s future is unknown, but ownership may be leaning towards firing Dan Bylsma.  Ownership was concerned over Sidney Crosby’s body language during the playoffs according to a source. Mario Lemieux pulled him aside to talk with him after Game 6. Byslma may have lost the dressing, especially with the support of Crosby and Malkin.
  • William DePaoli: If the Penguins get rid of GM Ray Shero, Pat Brisson is a potential GM candidate.
  • Hope Smoke: Rob Rossi: “Pens won’t move Malkin. He’ll have his agent tell whatever team that tries to trade for him that he won’t stay in North America” … “Penguins will look to move Letang and or Neal instead.”
  • Hope Smoke: Bob McKenzie: “In the past Bylsma was seen a as a beloved figure by the Pens players. Its anything but that now.” … “I believe reports in Pitt that there is some thought of going deeper than Bylsma. Is it possible Shero loses his job? Possible” … “Other changes in Pittsburgh will depend on who is in the front office and behind the bench”
  • Hope Smoke: Nick Kypreos: “Issues in Pittsburgh are player accountability and team toughness. Problems go deeper than Fleury” … “I heard there were some ankle issues with Crosby but I won’t pin his performance on injuries”
  • Hope Smoke: Nick Kypeos: “People are already talking like Bylsma’s gone. One name that popped up a few minutes ago, to take over in Pitt, is Mike Keenan” … “People are comparing the Keenan – Crosby duo to the situation Keenan had in NY”
  • Hope Smoke: Ray Ferraro: “There is no way the Penguins can go forward with the same group.” … “Maybe Crosby needs more support. More guys around him than we might think”
  • Joshua Janet: “Ray Shero was named “GM of the Year” on June 14, 2013. Less than a year later, pundits and fan alike suggesting he should be fired.”