As the trade deadline draws closer and closer, now with it being less than a week away, its time to start talking about the ideal additions to this years Penguins squad. If you've been living under a rock or have given up on the team much like superstar fan from Twitter @chriscrowell87 (don't follow him) has after every loss, you'll have missed some of the trades the Penguins have made this year. So far they have acquired the second coming of Jesus Christ himself in center Riley Sheahan from Detroit. They made a minor trade and sent forward Josh Archibald to the Arizona Coyotes for a goalie, and then acquired defenseman Jamie Oleksiak from the Dallas Stars. Safe to say, the trades with the Coyotes and Red Wings have made quite the impression this year and are two of the big reasons the Penguins have turned this season around and are something like 16-4-1 in 2018. But now we look to the future and the end of the regular season and the playoffs. The Penguins, like we just stated, have been playing out of this world hockey since turning the calendar to 2018. Some people might be of the mind set to not trade anyone and mess up the chemistry and all that nonsense. But the Penguins can get better and they can make it even more hard to play against them in the coming months if they add these two names. Derick Brassard and Michael Grabner.
Why Brassard makes sense: Adding Brassard makes almost makes too much sense. He would slot into the 3C role currently occupied by Riley Sheahan moving Sheahan down to 4C. That would give you Crosby, Malkin, Brassard, Sheahan down the middle. Have fun matching up with that. Adding Brassard, who has a good bit of offensive upside also gives you the insurance in case, God forbid, one of Crosby or Malkin go down with an injury. Brassard could jump up to 2C and not be a total waste of a roster spot playing on the 2nd line. Brassard also would fit seamlessly into the Pens system. He can play fast and the Penguins know that from his time with the New York Rangers. He can also bolster and already incredible Pens PK unit and help the Pens 2nd PP unit. Brassard has 17 goals, 18 assists for 35 points on the season. That's about 30 more points that Conor Sheary, Carter Rowney, and Tom Kuhnhackl combined.
What may keep Brassard out of Pittsburgh: The price. Both in his contract and the assets the Senators are apparently asking for him. For this year Brassard's contract wouldn't be a problem. They would only have to pay him $1,100,000 million dollars plus the Pens could ask the Sens to retain some of his salary. The Pens are reportedly trying to move defenseman Matt Hunwick which would free up a significant chunk of money which would help acquire Brassard. Next year though, Brassard is slated to make $5,000,000 million dollars, which if you want to re-sign Patric Hornqvist might make the Pens weary of trading for Brassard. The Sens are also reportedly asking for quite the package for Brassard. That package being a roster player, a 1st round pick and a decent prospect (per Pierre LeBrun). That would probably mean the Pens would have to trade Daniel Sprong. But Rutherford has said he's going all in to win again so the Pens may not even care about the price tag Ottawa is asking. Also if you are worked up about Daniel Sprong being included in a trade to acquire Brassard, don't be. The Pens have struck gold with signing college free agents over the passed few years and have drafted incredibly so they can easily replace Sprong. See, Aston-Reese, Zach.
If the Penguins make only 1 trade at the deadline this is the trade we want the most. Like we said earlier. Getting Brassard almost makes too much sense. Brassard would complete and already very good Pens line up especially after the emergence of Zach Aston-Reese and Dominik Simon.
Highlights - xSupraHD
Why Grabner makes sense: We said that Brassard to Pittsburgh almost makes too much sense. Well Grabner to Pittsburgh makes even more sense than that. Grabner is a former 34 goal scorer and is coming off of scoring 27 last season with the Rangers. This year he has 25 so far and leads the Rangers in goals. The reason Grabner to Pittsburgh makes so much sense is his speed. Grabner is easily one of the fastest skaters in the NHL and probably the fastest skater in the Eastern Conference. He would fit perfectly into the Penguins system and could provide a scoring touch on any line. Grabner would also bolster the Pens PK with the use of his speed and the chance he could take the puck the other way at any moment which would be a very nice element to add to the Pens already good PK. He could also potentially play on the power play as well. We have personally wanted Grabner on the Penguins for years. Hopefully this is the year it finally happens. An upside to making a trade for Grabner, the Pens would only have to pay him a little over $350,000 dollars the rest of the season so fitting him under the cap wouldn't be a problem.
What may keep Grabner out of Pittsburgh: He plays for the New York Rangers. If Michael Grabner played for any team outside of the Metro he may already be a Penguin. Grabner playing for the New York Rangers may be the only thing keeping him from wearing a Penguins uniform this season. Trading with someone in your division doesn't happen often but it's not a every year occurrence either. I mean hell, even the Pens and the Flyers made a trade with each other one year. The fact of the matter is however, teams within the same division just do not like to trade with each other no matter how bad one team might be because you are directly helping a rival. The thing that may play in the Penguins favor however is the Rangers have already said they were rebuilding. They are going to sell some off of their players and stack picks/prospects for the future, If GMJR calls the Rangers and is willing to pay their asking price for Grabner when no one else will. Why would the Rangers say no?
Highlights - Hockey Videos
This may sound contradictory to us saying this trade makes more sense than acquiring Brassard but oh well. If the Penguins were to only make 1 trade this deadline this wouldn't be the one we want them to make. Its does make more sense than Brassard but the fact of the matter is, the Penguins don't really need a winger right now. With the emergence of Zach Aston-Reese and Dominik Simon, the Pens sole need at forward is really at the center position. However. Our pipe dream is for the Penguins to acquire both of these players. Their forward depth would be insane going into the playoffs. These two moves would make the Pens faster, it would improve their defense at the forward position, and ultimately improve their depth at every forward position.
The Pens have also been linked to other names such as JG Pageau from Ottawa and Mark Letestu from Edmonton. Pageau is an intriguing name because he is young and signed for two more seasons. Word is his price is significantly higher than the price for Brassard so no thank you. As far as Letestu goes...No thanks. He sucks. We've been down that road before.
We are entering the most fun time of the year as a hockey fan. The trade deadline timer is quickly ticking down and before you know it, it's going to be April and the playoffs are going to be starting. It is going to be an interesting six to seven days waiting and seeing what the Penguins decide to do. GMJR has been quoted in saying that he is all in and will do whatever he needs to bring a 3rd straight Stanley Cup to Pittsburgh. And damn it we are all behind him.
Hold on to your butts.
Go Pens .
Old Posts from our site, heyyyyyfannnssss (4/11-2/15). Cute name, but impossible to remember.