Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup – August 9, 2020

by | Aug 9, 2020 | Rumors | 70 comments

Check out the latest on the Penguins, Wild, and Predators in this Sunday’s NHL rumor roundup.


PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE: Matt Vensel examined several pressing questions facing the Pittsburgh Penguins in the wake of their elimination from the playoff qualifying round.

Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Matt Murray (NHL Images).

He wondered if Matt Murray will return, believing it’ll come down to how much the restricted free agent will seek on his new contract. Backup Tristan Jarry is also an RFA and showed potential as a starting goalie this season.

Murray was also on Vensel’s list of Penguins who might not return next season. Unrestricted free agents such as Patrick Marleau and Justin Schultz probably skate away, while Conor Sheary will have to accept a bargain-basement deal to stay.

Vensel suggests Nick Bjugstad and Jack Johnson as cost-cutting trade options, though moving the latter could prove difficult. He also proposed shopping Kris Letang after the emergence of John Marino.

The Pens must find two new defensemen to plug into their top-six, with promising Pierre-Olivier Joseph as an option. They also need to sort out their third-line center position and their bottom-six forwards.

It’s unlikely they’ll consider trading Evgeni Malkin unless he asked to be traded. So far, he’s given no indication he wants to move on.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Cap Friendly indicates the Penguins have over $68.2 million invested in 15 players for 2020-21. Unless Murray’s taking a hometown discount for a year or two with the promise of bigger bucks down the road, or the Penguins shed salary to make room for his new contract, I don’t see how they can afford to keep him and Jarry.

Unless Malkin wants out, he’ll be back with the Penguins next year. So will Johnson, who’s earning an annual average value of $3.25 million through 2022-23 and isn’t capable of being a decent third-pairing defenseman anymore. They’ll have to package him with a sweetener to make him palatable, but his age (33) and the remaining years on that contract are serious sticking points.

Bjugstad has a year remaining at $4.1 million. If he hasn’t recovered from spinal surgery they could place him on long-term injury reserve to start next season. They can’t buy him out as long as he’s still recovering from surgery.

As I noted yesterday, trading Letang won’t be easy. He has an 18-team list of preferred trade destinations, but the oft-injured rearguard is 33 and carries a $7.25 million AAV through 2021-22.


THE TENNESSEAN: Paul Skrbina wondered what the Nashville Predators will look like next season following their qualifying-round elimination.

He suggested buying out Kyle Turris’ contract, though that would cost $2 million annually against their salary cap through 2027-28. They could also let Craig Smith and/or Mikael Granlund depart via free agency and replace them with prospects such as Eeli Tolvanen and Philip Tomasino.

THE ATHLETIC (subscription required): Joe Rexrode advocates buying out Turris and bidding farewell to Granlund. However, the hard part is figuring out if a major trade is necessary to push the Preds back into relevance.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Predators GM David Poile intends to make a big move, the question becomes which player hits the trade block? Not Filip Forsberg or defensemen Ryan Ellis and team captain Roman Josi. Rexrode doubts Poile will shop Matt Duchene only a year after signing him to a long-term contract. Ryan Johansen and Viktor Arvidsson comprise the Predators’ best line alongside Forsberg, but there’s been some grumbling over Johansen’s reliability as a first-line center.

Poile has a history of making big moves that no one saw coming. If he considers going that route again, my guess is Johansen becomes the trade candidate, provide a taker can be found for his $8 million AAV through 2024-25.


STARTRIBUNE.COM: Sara McLellan suggests Kirill Kaprizov could address some of the Minnesota Wild’s scoring woes. He’ll make his NHL debut next season, but other reinforcements might be necessary.

It remains to be seen what happens to captain (and pending UFA) Mikko Koivu. McLellan feels the Wild need better depth on defense and wonders about the status of their goaltending after Alex Stalock replaced Devan Dubnyk as their starter. Both are under contract for next season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Wild have over $65 million tied up in 17 players. With Jordan Greenway and Luke Kunin coming off entry-level contracts, GM Bill Guerin could ink them to affordable bridge deals to ensure sufficient space for other moves.

Unless Koivu’s willing to accept a one-year, bonus-laden deal with a low base salary, the 37-year-old probably played his final game for the Wild, or as an NHL player. They’ll probably stick with the Dubnyk-Stalock tandem and see how things shake out next season. Stalock’s signed through 2021-22 while Dubnyk is a UFA next year.


  1. I see Murray traded. Ott or Detroit are prime options. Maybe buffalo. Bjugstad at 4.1 is unpalatable but at half retained he might be moved to a team who sees a fairly cheap reclamation project. Johnson won’t be moved cause sid wants him here and he is essentially unmovable anyway. LEtang would garner lots of interest but the combo of the limited ntc and the flat cap would create a situation where lots of things would have to come up cherries. But being “stuck” with a top pair d man at a reasonable price is ok by me

    • Ottawa won’t be using up one of possible two trade options by taking on a goalie this year. As I keep reiterating, that position is not an immediate priority. Offense is. It seems Nilsson is healthy, Hogberg played well enough in a tough year to get another long look, and they have Daccord ready to step in here and there after a good year at Belleville. Nor have they given up on Gustavsson. Then there are their recent draftees Mandolese and Sogaard.

      • George O. When you say offense, would Ottawa have any interest in a young dman who provides offense? DeAngelo is a name that pops up a lot in rumors among Ranger fans. Ottawa to me would be a fit considering they can fit his next contract better than Rangers. Also lack a 2nd round pick and you guys have tons. Also, going into tomorrow, I keep wondering what Rangers will do with #1 overall if they get lucky. Panarin and Kreider both signed long term at LW with fill nmc’s. Lafreniere is a LW. Someone would have to change position or Rangers could trade back. Most likely with either Kings, Sens, or Red Wings. Would Ottawa be willing to trade up? 3,5 and a 2nd rounder for DeAngelo and Lafreniere? Something similar?

      • Slick62, that’s an interesting proposition that would be hard to pass on for Dorion. But really, I just couldn’t see Gorton deviating from the tried-and-true axiom “draft the best player available” and while I don’t think Lafrenière is in the same class as Lemieux, Crosby, McDavid or even Matthews, make no mistake: he is going to be a VERY good F in the NHL.

        Having said that, the skill difference between him and those ranked just below him down to about # 6 is nowhere near as evident as in the draft years as those just named. This is one of the deepest drafts in a while, so whoever latches onto a Stuetzle, Byfield, Rossi, Drysedale or Raymond isn’t getting chopped liver.

        So, even though who really knows what might transpire if NYR get # 1 (strangers things have happened over the years with teams regularly going “off the board”, if Gorton and his staff sees it the way I just described down to # 6, you’d have to think Dorion and his scouts also see it that way.

      • You keep saying this George and maybe you’re right. But maybe not.

      • Doesn’t that always apply to the unknown Chrisms? When it comes to judging the potential of draftees, all we can do is base our opinions on multiple observations covering all types of circumstances.

        What I’ve seen of these kids – some a lot more than others admittedly – tells me that Lafrenière is a notch above the 5 immediately below him in the latest draft rankings. Not a McDavid and everybody else type of notch, but sufficient to make him the obvious # 1.

        But then how he does and how, say, the other 5 do out of the gate is going to depend a lot on who gets him, since this is so unlike other drafts. As an example, if it’s the Wild or NYR, he gets to play a lot more than if, say, it happens to be a Toronto or Pittsburgh. Whereas if Stuetzle, Byfield, Rossi, Drysedale & Raymond wind up in L.A., Detroit, Ottawa (2 of them) and Anaheim, only Byfield is almost assured to spend one more year in junior. The others could all make the teams that take them.

      • I was referring to the sens looking for an upgrade in goal this year as opposed to waiting. Wouldn’t make sense to go get an ufa vet mid to late 20,s guy but Murray? Still approaching his mid twenties. Knows how to win big. Would grow well with upcoming ott core. Would be relatively cheap to get. Makes a lot of sense.

    • I think Letang will be very difficult to move. 7.25 cap hit, concussion history, had a stroke and really isnt overly adept at defensive hockey. The few teams with cap room are rebuilding (Avalanche withstanding) with no need for an aging dman.

      I felt like Sullivan scapegoated Murray by sitting him for the final game though Jarry did play very well. Trading Murray wont be easy considering his own concussion issues and a flooded goalie market.

      • Agree on Murray and Letang. One Pittsburgh fan yesterday was convinced Murray would return a top 4 d-man.

        Which brings me to my psa for the day.

        Please folks, don’t drink and post! For gods sake… you will have to love with those things you’ve said forever!

      • Hi RRJ

        re “ I felt like Sullivan scapegoated Murray by sitting him for the final game ”

        This move is likely the worst and most unwarranted public thing done to any prominent player up for contract renewal

        The swap wasn’t the issue

        He said less than 24 hours before that announcement that he wouldn’t be letting press know publicly if changes which strongly hinted to everybody that he was finally going to do the right thing (sit JH)

        Had the presser on Friday announced :

        McC/Laffy flip (dine but not announced); AND

        Jarr/Murr flip (announced and done); AND

        Riikola/JJ flip (the most obvious required change in the history if the NHL)… not announce or done

        …. then …. the team would gave accepted it, rallied and played a much more invigorated game

        Instead the way he (Sully ) did it; contrary to the wishes of media; fans; and at least two coaches… all demanding a JJ exorcism … that way publicly told the world that JJ is far superior and much more coveted by team than JJ …. a crock …. but the clear message Sully was giving

        Here is a quote that my cousin found and texted to me… it is EXACTLY the way it is:

        “ Mike Sullivan now has a divided dressing room. He and Hack Johnson on the one side with all other players and all assistant coaches on the other side”


      • Letang as far as I can tell has missed only 20 games since 17-18 season.

        And Murray would likely get a good return… for a goalie. Certainly not a top 4 d man unless that particular player has some kind of obvious flaws.

      • The concern would be more than just those 2 years.

        16-17 he missed 41 games.
        15-16 11 games
        14-15 13 games
        13-14 43 games
        12-13 45 games…

        Over the last 10 years he’s played one full season and missed over 25% of possible games . That is no es bueno at 7+ per in a frozen cap world. I don’t see a market for him.

        Murray, I guess that depends on what you consider a good return. The only type of top 4 guy you’re going to get for a goaltender is a flawed guy like JJ.

        I say in this market , today. You’re looking at a 2nd round pick at best. Flooded market, frozen cap, Murray often injured. Not spelling big return.

        Someone is going to say “ 2 cup resume. “And I’m going to say no GM is thinking about that while handing out assets.

      • You are mostly right ny. About a second in this market. But you are wrong about the cup thing. You should be right but nhl gms and the coaches in their ears have repeatedly proved over the years they value that experience.

        I don’t see letang as injury prone as recent history has proven he can stay on the ice. He is one of those players that has more value to the team he is on than the value he would net in return from a trade.

    • I would think Yzerman would want Jarry over Murray and if not plenty of Ufa goalies on the market this summer.

      • Pengy,

        You seem to think that it is JJ and Sullivan vs the rest of the room.

        Don’t kid yourself.

        The problem lies right here:

        JJ has a LOT of muscle in his corner, and ain’t going anywhere until that issue is resolved.


    • Petry and Canadiens 1st this year for JJ and Pens first

      • Actually, the Habs were the favourite team of both JJ and Sid, back in the day.

        So, throw in Sid, take Weber and Alzner instead of Petry, and it’s a deal!!!

      • I would take your first this year and jj (since you sant to get rid of him), pick whoever you want from the Habs. Sid unfortunately won’t go to the habs (why would he), deal?

    • Add Toronto to that list after that bad goal tonight with 6:34 left giving Columbus a 2-0 lead..

  2. With this pandemic it will be extremely hard to trade high priced players. Even if a team has the cap space the owner might veto taking on a high priced player. There is no guarantee there will be fans in the stands when the new season starts in December. If that is the case owners will be taking a bath.

    Having said all that if money is no problem, I think it is time Pittsburgh moved on from Malkin. From winning the cup in 2017 they have been on a steady slide. It would be wise to trade him while he still has value. Unfortunately I don’t think his value is very high with the big salary and diminishing skills.

    How about a Ryan Johansen – Johnny Gaudreau trade?

    • Going to be hard to find a team Malkin approves a trade too that is not only a Cup contender but has the cap room and the assets to deal.

      My guess is that only the Avalanche might meet that criteria.

      Malin to Colorado? Not likely but who knows these days, anything can happen.

      • Malkin is a penguin through the end of his contract. Both tough to move but also no reason to move. After this contract though… if a Russian team comes up with enough bucks I’ll bet he finishes career in Russia. He’s really got nothing left to prove in the nhl. From his social media stuff he appears much happier in Russia.

      • Ronald, on the surface it might appear that Colorado has the cap space to absorb Malkin’s $9.5 mil cap hit, with just over $22 mil and change with 9 to sign to reach 23

        The thing is, their 6 RFAs (Burakovsky, Jost, Nichushkin, Kamanenv, Zadorov and Graves) accounted for $9,670,833 this season and when the dust settles in the off-season, that will likely be upped to $12 or 13 mil collectively. That would eave them 9 or 10 to sign 3, but adding Malkin would eat up most of that, unless some money went back to Pittsburgh – e.g., a Donskoi, Compher or Cole.

  3. Mikael Granlund is toast for sure. I think they keep the Forsberg line with Josi and Ellis and major shuffle the rest. Poile will have to buy out some (never has) and let walk some away. Odds he will draft a defence-men

    Letang was a No show in this Covid Cup. I thought he might be fired up against the Habs.

  4. Pitt has had back to back poor showings in the playoffs. Before this season, Malkin averaged over a point per game in the playoffs. He finished 14th in scoring this year. Not bad for a player with diminishing skills. He has 2 years left on his contract. He has a full nmc. Nobody has cap space for him. He’s not going anywhere. Penguins don’t carry any dead cap. No buyouts or retained salary. Buying out Letang and Johnson will save almost 7 mil in cap space over next 2 seasons, while carrying a combined 3.5 dead cap space. That’s not a lot considering these financial times. Promote P-O Joseph who they got in Kessel trade. Maybe sign a bargain ufa for a year.

    • Why would they buy out Letang? He can still play and even if the cap is high he still has value, Johnson not so much. I would bury him in the AHL, since he is below replacement when in the lineup.

      • Kent Nilsson. Rangers went through same thing with Shattenkirk. Needed to retool defense and nobody was willing to trade for him and that cap hit. Tough choices when buy out window opens. Have to weigh cost of keeping him vs replacing him and will he actually be missed?

      • Letang still plays like a top pair d man… even if he is no longer an elite top 2. Shattenkirk comparison makes no sense.

      • what about Letang and pens 1st this year for Petry and Canadiens first?

      • Gary,

        The Pens don’t have their 1st this year. Went to Minny in the Zucker trade. Not sure if trade Petry for Letang. I think Letang’s stats are inflated playing with Malkin and Crosby and his cap hit is a lot higher.

      • Unless it was announced Howard the pens… having missed the playoffs now can pick this year or next to give minny that 1st

  5. Anybody heard from Pengy?!?

    Hopefully hes on an Epstein watch!!!

    • Hi RRJ

      Posted tons yesterday but didn’t realize ‘til late in the day that I’d been doing all my posts and responses on the “ Morning Coffee” side

      Responded to you above today. Also posted today on Morning Coffee side

      Going for peaceful walk now with Mrs. Pengy down on Great Lakes Waterfront trail

      I’ll breathe deep and think good thoughts (Sully firing; JJ buyout)

      • You should be happy Pengy, you have a real chance to land Lafreniere. I would do everything to be in your position

      • Hi Gary

        Mathematically 12.5%

        Via Karma 0%

        Pulling for Jets; but my gut says Panthers

  6. Re Pens…

    Would Murray want to return after Sullivan (by swapping goalies game 4 and publicly stating at presser [24 hours after telling them that he would not publicly announce any changes]; AND combined with playing JJ game 4) has basically told the world that he (Murray)means less to the Penguins than the worst player in the NHL (who BTW at the time of the press conference ; had individually cost 3 of their last playoff/play-in losses all by himself; and contributed significantly on another of the Isle’s losses)

    Pre Friday I had posted several times that Pens had two very easy moves that allow both goalies to be signed and Pens still under Cap

    IMHO… keeping only one of Murr/Jarr and back up of DeSmith…. with an injury then to the remaining (kept) starter… the effective Starter is then DeSmith; back-up is Larmi (less than 900 AHL; more ECHL games than AGL; no NHL games)…NOT a good scenario

    Pens as at now …. 16 under contract (10-6-0 : F-D-G) with $13.2 M space

    1. Buyout (PLEASE) JJ; trade Bjug (with a prospect(s) sweetener)
    2. Poulin up (replacing Bjug roster spot); Rikkola ($1M tops)replaces JJ’s roster spot

    After 1 & 2 above …. Pens still at 10-6-0 ; so 4 F, 1 D; 2 G’s to fill …. and now already a better roster than pre 1&2; AND now $17.4 M in Cap to spend… Absolutely doable

    Shultz and Marleau are gone for sure; can’t see them affording Sheary

    Above (getting them to $17.4 M while simultaneously improving the team) is done with quick stroke of the Pen (JJ buyout) and a few calls (some team will take Bjug at $4.1 M with the right sweetener(s) …. (Lafferty and a 4th?)

    Rodrigues, McC , and Simon will be resigned reasonably.

    Ruhweedel to WBS ; replaced by either Czuzman or P-O J (the most that flip costs is $163 K in Cap; and again; makes team much much better

    Two UFAs I’d go after FOR sure… Soucy (only turned 26 two weeks ago; late bloomer; big ; agile; speedy and good hockey IQ D-man) and Psyk (only 1 of maybe 3 NHLers ; equally adept at F & D):

    Result …. all within Cap



    McC- Poulin- *Horny/Tanev/Rodrigues/**Psyk



    *Love Horny but getting long in tooth…. any trade (if it could happen… he has full NTC) costs a bunch in sweeteners but would make team younger and faster and save $5.3 M Cap (less amount for player replacing him)





    7th D: P-O J or Czuzman

    **Psyk (can equally play wing or D)


    Above roster fits in Cap ; waaaaaay better than roster they just had

    Re Vensell on moving Tanger(18 possible trade destinations unless he waives) … I think the only realistic (team with space; want; need) destination would be Habs…. and a tough contract likely also comes back

    A weird one would be Alzner/Domi for Tanger… doubtful

    Another weird one: Webber (50 % retained) and Juulsen for Tanger (46% retained)… nil Cap effect for next two years; then Habs Cap free; and Pens have Weber 4 more years at $3.93M but I can see him retiring just before 23/24 (when he’s only owed $1M… not much over league min then)…. recapture by Preds won’t leave much Cap on books for Pens

    Re Vensell on any thoughts of trading Geno (NMC so all in Geno’s hands)…. he , I’d think now; might more easily be persuaded (to waive) if they refuse to get rid of JJ

    Who fits him in ? Who will come back…. tough and unlikely trade

    • Pengy
      My guts says Rangers, then Pens.
      I have my fingers crossed for Jets, but I don’t think this will happen

    • Pengy..

      Tough for you and I Penguins and Leafs are done.

      I feel players leaving via trade, release/buyout, or just let walk

      Justin Schultz
      Jack Johnson
      Matt Murray
      Connor Sheary
      Patrick Marleau
      Dominik Simon

      We won back to back cups because we had defensive depth rolling out guys like Ian Cole, Trevor Daley, Ron Hainsey on top of Dumoulin Schultz and Letang. We don’t have that anymore..

      There are lots of good UFAS out there on defense. We need one top 4 defenseman (say a T.J. Brodie) to pair with young John Marino.

      3rd pairing should be
      Pettersson-Pierre Oliver Joseph (on free agent if necessary)

      Build around Crosby / Zucker/ Guentzel /Malkin/Rust/Tanev Mccann

      build around Marino letang Marino

      Jarry is the starter need a nhl quality back-up

      One top 4 d-man, a backup goalie for Jarry, some defensive depth and a third line center

      Crosby Guentzel

      Malkin Zucker Rust

      Eric Haula (UFA FLORIDA) Mccann Tanev how fast would this line be.

      Blueger Hornqvist Rodriquez

      Letang Dumo

      Marino (UFA/ T.J Brodie OR TRADE

      Pettersson=Pierre Oliver Joseph

      Jarry – quality NHL back up

      Matt Murray might look good in Toronto…LOL

  7. I think Leafs should try to trade Marner for Ellis with a couple draft picks exchanged as needed but no salary retention. That would fix all cap issues without losing a player like Johsson who they would retain and be like leafs get both next year for Ellis. Nash has to do something big and this would qualify.

    • Lol in today’s nhl I would take Ellis with his style and contract than marner his style and contract! The leafs would be adding picks ESPECIALLY if there is no salary held back

    • Ellis and turris for Marner is definitely interesting proposal.

      • The Leafs cant take Turris but could add some pics or maybe liligren to avoid taking salary back or retaining. Nash can offload turris on someone else with lilligren and or picks as sweeteners. With Ellis and Holl ( a hugely under rated RD they can afford to lose lilligren and play dermott or Lehtonen on right side

      • If you dump an over priced player on a team that also can’t really afford to absorb salary then an overpriced player would have to come back. Plus turris negative value helps offset the greater value of Ellis.

  8. Reprise, from above:

    You seem to think that it is JJ and Sullivan vs the rest of the room.

    Don’t kid yourself.

    The problem lies right here:

    JJ has a LOT of muscle in his corner, and ain’t going anywhere until that issue is resolved.


    • He won’t listen to reason, Rich.
      I’ve told him that since he started posting here.

      I feel the same about Radk ss Pengy does about Sids BFF, JJ.

    • Hi Rattus Rattus

      Friendship only goes so far

      Sid is team first. Team is collapsing now…

      I have strong confidence due to the overall situation that the quote is very close to the truth… Sully backing JJ over Murr publicly has team and assistant coaches all against him (Sully)

      Sid won’t stand in the way of a move that heals the team; and boy does it need healing

      They were close friends as young teens; and have remained friends (but not best friends) iver the years

      His friendship stays intact as JJ with buyout loses less than $1.4 M in take home pay; retires to spend time with family and doesn’t have media; all of Pittsburgh and all his team-mates despising him for what he does to team on ice

      JJ buyout and Sully firing a must now

      • Sid is team first? That’s why horny gets shunted to third line over sheary. That’s why Iginla played his off wing? It’s why jj gets a 5 year deal as a reclamation project? Sid is great. But Sid gets what Sid wants.

      • If you think Mike Sullivan is getting fired you are more delusional than usual. He would be unemployed for about five minutes. Please stop with this already. You are beyond annoying.

      • Pengy,

        How do you, the Pengy, actually know Sid and JJ are actually not still bf’s?

        You don’t know.

        My bf in High School is still my bf today (wife and sons excluded).

        And why do you think Pitt actually signed JJ in the first place?
        Me, I don’t actually know, but I think I can make a fairly reasonable guess.

        I think you should be a little bit more realistic about Crosby and about people.
        Sid seems to me to be one of those guys who will be personally loyal to a fault.
        Maybe it was JJ who protected Crosby back in the day, and that’s something you never forget.

        Yeah, there’s the team, I get that.

        But 100% it is not what you said: Coach and JJ vs everybody else.

        We all know that JJ trusted his family financially, and for that he got swindled out of a lot of money.
        Maybe he still owes, maybe taking a buyout is actually a financial hardship for him.

        Crosby is neither going to move against his friend, nor is he going to be neutral.

        I know you’re a fan, but you have to be aware that life is more complicated than numbers on paper and what a fan may be aware of.

        I respect Crosby all the more for this.


  9. The hockey world was almost certain that the Penguins would beat the Canadiens, and most thought they would defeat the Islanders last season. Yet, they failed miserably in both instances. How superior does a team have to be before it can win a playoff series?

    Sure, there will be roster changes. but most of them will stem from factors other than player quality. The Penguins aren’t lacking in player quality. With them, it a matter of the whole being less than the sum of its parts.

    Having that in mind, perhaps the Penguins must take a look at the guy who’s doing the math. If Sullivan needs Rutherford to trade McCann for McDavid so that he can win again in the playoff, he’s asking a bit much.

    • Hi Francis

      “ matter of the whole being less than the sum of its parts.”

      ABSOLUTELY and BANG on

      The whole as at now includes JJ

      Every single Pen who has played 5 or mire games over the last 2 seasons gas tremendously better stats when JJ on bench than when he’d in

      This series before the nightmare presser on Friday:

      GA/60 when JJ on the ice 9.15

      GA/60 JJ on bench 1.22

      JJ xGF % 5on5 Game 3…..smidgeon over 15%

      Take him out of the equation …. i.e. not in series…. Pens win fames 1 and 3….. Pens win series

      He is that much of a detriment to the team

      Add Sully publicly conveying to the world that the series was down 1-2 because of Murr (913 in series vs 899 in season AND 970 when JJ on bench) and praising JJ by keeping him in Friday…. that’s where the whole is waaaay less than the sum of its parts

      Fire Sully ; buyout JJ…, all refreshed and ready to go

      • Again, from above:


        How do you, the Pengy, know that Sid and JJ are actually not still bf’s?

        You don’t know.

        My bf in High School is still my bf today (wife and sons excluded).

        And why do you think Pitt signed JJ in the first place?

        Me, I don’t actually know, but I think I can make a fairly reasonable guess.

        I think you should be a little bit more realistic about Crosby, about people, and about this situation.

        Sid seems to me to be one of those guys who will be personally loyal to a fault.
        Maybe it was JJ who protected Crosby – a small player – back in the day, and that’s something you never forget.

        Yeah, there’s the team, I get that.

        But, 100%, it is NOT what you said:
        “Coach and JJ vs everybody else.“

        We all know that JJ trusted his family financially, and for that he got swindled out of a lot of money.
        Maybe he still owes, maybe taking a buyout is a financial hardship for him.

        Crosby is neither going to move against his friend, nor is he going to be neutral.

        I know you’re a fan, but you have to be aware that life is more complicated than numbers on paper and what a fan may be aware of.

        I respect Crosby all the more for this.


      • Hi Rich

        My bad for not muddying my true sentiments

        Sorry if I’m conveying that personal life and loyalty and friendship are not extremely important ; if not paramount personal traits… they are..they should be

        Like you outside of my “best friend” (Mrs. Pengy) and my kids ; I’m very tight with my best friend (best man at each other’s weddings) …. met him very first class very first day of University 4 decades ago

        I have a group of 5 friends that I’m extremely tight with (grew up in same neighbourhood; went to same schools; met in Kindergarten)…. that’s 5 1/2 decades

        The other slightly broader but a little more expansive set of about 10 friends (includes the 5 above) is guys I met in high school ( 4 1/2 decades ago). We are very tight… parties weddings vacationing together

        I’m loyal to those ten and my best friend and of course my family; to a T and to the ends of the earth

        By no stretch am I suggesting a figuratively divided room with 19 players and assistant coaches Uber social distancing (15-20’) from Sully/JJ

        By no stretch am I ever going to infer that Sid would ever publicly go against JJ

        These two were very tight for 10 months ; 17 years ago. They went on to win the 2003 USA Hockey Tier I 17 & Under National Championship. They were tight then but went separate routes…. Sid went to the Q

        They kept in touch and remained friends (but certainly not best friends). When asked after GMJR signed JJ ; what he (Sid) thought of “your best friend becoming a Pen” ; Sid said that they were certainly friends but not best friends and he went on to say that they don’t vacation together but will socialize sometimes in the off season when in the same location or charity golf tournaments etc.

        It’s a tragedy what JJ’s parents did for him. He gets my full empathy. I am positive that if he wasn’t personally liked we would have heard about it. The players don’t dislike the man; just his playing ability and the negative impact on success for the team and everybody’s stats.

        The divisiveness portrayed by that quote I’m sure stems now from the public “siding” that Sully took by quite proverbially throwing Murray under the bus. I can’t stress enough … 970 while JJ on the bench.

        Had Sully shut his mouth and handed in game sheet that had Jarr/Murr flip (done) ; McC/ Lafferty flip (done); and Riikola/JJ flip (unfortunately not done)… then the message is clear… shake up… got to win this game … Pens would have come out gangbusters

        Instead… Sully effectively told the world… Murr stinks; we’re here like this now because of him; and by playing JJ… saying he’s not to blame for anything. Basically saying Pens can’t win w/o him; when the opposite (Pens lose because of him) is true

        Forget about the minus 5 and all the GAs he was responsible for and contributed on; Let’s just take out the two horror show goals… one in game 1 ; 1 in game 3… eliminate the 1 in game 1…. Pens win in reg

        Then Pens up 2-0 in series… eliminate one in game 3… Pens up in series 2-0; up in game 3 (and then decider game) 3-0…. not a chance Pens lose that series then

        I stress Rich; I do not dislike the man; it’s the player and the damage he inflicts on the team that gets me. Sully made it tremendously worse by his actions Friday

        He *Sully) absolutely did not have his team fired up and raring and playing anywhere near their ability

        I fully believe that no Presser on Friday and even with no line up changes (and that includes JJ in) that Pens come out full tilt…. I’m not taking a leap to say they’d win games 4 and 5 but I fully believe that they would have dominated Friday

        I stand by my conviction and statement of my full belief… no presser; JJ out/ Riikola in; with or without the McC/Laffy flip… Pens win Friday ; dominate Sunday…. and only lose Sunday if Price makes 50 stops (he can for sure ; so Habs could have still won the series)

        Again; taking absolutely nothing from Habs performance

        Big three on D 👍👍👍👍
        Suzuki and some of the other young guns 👍👍

        But …. if JJ doesn’t play at all… Habs in no way take it in 4… push it to 5… maybe..l win in 4…. no

        I posted many times before the series started… no JJ and average performance by Price… Pens win series

        I cautioned several times what difference makers both could be. One could limit/hamper Pens GF; one could cause Pens GAs to inflate

        …. and so it happened

        Pens scored enough (on an exceptional goalie performing at exceptional levels ) to win. They couldn’t curb the GAs ( again first three games GA/60 with JJ 9.15; w/o JJ.. 1.22 …, that’s the series in a nutshell)

        By divided… players can’t ossibly be supporting Sully’s public trading of Murray while elevating JJ to the proverbial untouchable status

        They all wanted to win; and there is no one in the entire world that can convince me that they ( Oens) all knew in their hearts that their chance at winning that series was Waaaaaiaay better if JJ was sat. They are right there watching him … they are not blind

      • “ for not muddying” s/b “ for muddying”

  10. Many thanks for the reply, Pengy, but way, way, way too much.

    You quoted originally that it was everybody in the room vs JJ and the Coach.

    I took issue with that quote, I still do.

    It is naive to believe, and I don’t think it’s true, that Crosby would turn on his friend, especially when things got tough.

    Quite the opposite from my own experience with hockey players.

    I stick by my primary assertion – that the statement you initially quoted had no basis in provable fact and, imo, was an extremely dubious one.

    What happens with JJ going forward?
    I have no idea.

    Everybody had their own opinions, and that’s fine, but I don’t think one should be pulling things out of thin air to support one’s own feelings.

    That’s all.

    peace, bro, and goodnight.


    • Hi Rich

      Thanks fir reading my manifesto…. sorry… winded, weary, sad

      I just want to point out that that quote was not mine; that was sent to me by my cousin who had found it; cut and pasted it, and texted it to me

      Again I certainly don’t see this literally happening; and I cede that Sid would never discus with teammates any negative feelings (if any) he has about JJ’s play. He’d be completely blind not to see it; but discuss it… highly unlikely

      I’m also confident that there isn’t an actual gathering of players in groups ; collectively bashing JJ

      Pairs of players; maybe even trios , unleashing there frustration over what he did;?I can buy that

      The metaphorical divided dressing room that that person was posting on; to me ; is very easy to buy…. that is w/o vocalizing; I have a very strong feeling that most teammates are very peeved at the situation that JJ put them in (down 2-1) ; but I would find it mind boggling that any single one of the team (other than JJ) or any of the assistant coaches; felt what Sully did (publicly blaming Murray while effectively promoting full support of JJ) was even close to justifiable and in fact mortifyingly awful

      Them discussing that feeling publicly…. not a great deal of likelihood

      All of them (save JJ and Sully) thinking and believing that was wrong ; to me ; is very reasonable to believe. Even Sid feeling Sully’s move was wrong ; to me, is believable

      Do we know for sure

      Of course not

      Do I think its a strong possibility… yes

      Do I believe Sully has lost the room… as at now…. yes I do believe that

      Fingers crossed on a turnaround


      Got to cry myself to sleep now that Leafs out as well… now I will be cheering for my “auxiliary “ “third “ fav team… VGKs

  11. You would expect when you have 45 million dollars worth of skaters on the ice they could score a goal.

    The strategy of paying big dollars to a few players is proving to be a loosing strategy

  12. Another fine example of pond hockey gone wrong.

    Shanascam – fired
    Dumbass – fired
    Keefe – fired

    Said it before, gonna say it again…

    The Leafs are SOFT…..

  13. Dear Toronto,

    This concludes the 2019/2020 Pond Hockey Season. The Mens Hockey Tournament begins Tuesday.

    Enjoy the off season.

    Every team with the testicular fortitude to make the playoffs.

  14. It is a crime that Werenski and Jones don’t get more recognition. They are both Norris trophy caliber defensmen. That Jones is the best defensmen I have watched this year!

    It is the old story the small market players never get their due

    Hopefully people really sit up give Jones and Werenski their due

  15. NYR4LIFE.. You are the one who should take your meds for ADD, AHD, and Bi-polar disorder. I said Murray could be used with a sweetener to get a top 4 d-man.
    I also said there are plenty of UFA top 4 defenders in to 2020 off season.

    There are a lot of teams that could use a 25 year old, 2 time Stanley cup champion goalie. Sharks, Wild, Hurricanes, Red Wings Ottawa, Avalanche and you can add Toronto after Andersons big gaf with 6’34 to go tonight sealing Columbus win.


    Why don’t you concentrate on the hopeless hapless Rangers.. They need more work than the Penguins who have made the playoffs 13 straight seasons longest active streak.. a few tweaks we will be back.

    So suck it…LOL

    • A

      Quite an obnoxious boy, settle down D-X

    • If Murray – the 25 year old 2 time Cup champ is still the goalie he was, then you failed to mention one team who could really use that type of goalie – the Pens.

  16. Murray to the Wild for a return of the #1 pick in 2020 or 2021. Or package Murray with Bjugstad (MN boy) and Johnson (MN boy) for Fiala & Rask. Wild can’t move Rask, Pens can’t move Johnson. Wild need depth at center. Or, let MN keep #1 pick and package, Murray, Bjugstad, Johnson for Dumba, Fiala, Rask. Salary Cap about equal (including new contract for Murray).

    • Have you read the book about you?
      If not, you definitely should.

    • You MUST be a Pittsburgh fan!

      • Like that.s a bad thing!! You must be a RANGER FAN.

    • Spinner Spencer…i hear what you are saying and its not a bad idea. We don’t want Johnson they don’t want Rask who isn’t all that bad. i just don’t see them giving up Dumba.. I like Fala but them taking turn style Johnson is one thing adding cripple Bjugstad might be too much….

      i would rather go UFA T.J. Brodie good skater. lefthanded shot, can run a good power play, will fit in nicely with young john Marino…

      Or package Murray and somebody else or number #1 pick to get an RFA like 25 year old defenseman Nikita Zadorov. This dude is 6ft 4m 230, mean, has major snarl, can skate, has a good shot, and solid out let passer.
      Murray plus 2021 1st round pick for Zadorov

  17. Lol. I see black and golds mom went to sleep. He usually has to sneak his computer time!

    Back to bed you little munchkin! Little boys need their sleep!

    Btw. Those hopeless hapless rangers have played 5 less games than those mighty aging pens in the last 2 years.

    At least NY knew when the core was rotting.

    Murray _= 2nd round pick. But I love that you think his 2 cups = anything of significance!

    Please show me where you said “with a sweetener “…. here is you’re other late night mommy asleep post….

    blackngold on August 9, 2020 at 1:57 am
    NYR4LIFE…. You babbling bumkin. It is not a time for a rebuild we leave that for the Rangers. LOL
    -Look truth be told we ran in to a hot goalie, a short series, we blew a 3-1 lead in game 3 that was costly, our bottom defense pair sucked, and Malkin was a no Show.
    PLUS Montreal played their asses off.
    We need one top 4 defenseman (left handed shot) to put with young rising star John Marino. We can get that either UFA like a T.J Brodie or RFA using Matt Murray as trade bait like a Nikita Zadorov or Hayden Fluery. Matt Murray has an impressive resume, is young, and a lot of teams need a #1 goalie.“

    Yeah, Hayden Fleury is on how a way to Pittsburgh! Lmfao… I’m on meds?

    • That’s my bad i forgot to type in sweetener. It was late and like you I WAS using my mommy computer time or something stupid like that.

      My bad on the sweetener there. Sorry!!

      Lets count Stanly Cups you go first ! Crickets crickets is that jeopardy music we all hear playing oh yeah that’s right one cup in in 40 plus years.

      Penguins are always more relevant than you crack pot, change coaches, change GMs every two years, Rangers..
      You can’t even pick a starting goalie.

      You keep telling yourself your team is in the game… LOL Go Rangers…

      Funny thing I actually like the Rangers more than most teams and I also love the Yankees just their fans so obnoxious You know what I’m taking about like you… smiles.