Pens Points Friday: Draft Day, Free Agency Updates

Bruce Bennett

Today is the draft and the Pens pick at 22. All your draft previews are here. Niskanen informs Pens he will hit the open market on July 1. Vokoun ready to play again and wants to sign with a club who needs a reliable veteran.

DRAFT UPDATES

Faceoff Factor has the Top 50 Draft Ranking available to download. Here is the link to their list of best overall players by position.

Also, don't miss Hockey Future's preview of the Penguins draft. Here is their entire mock draft.

FREE AGENCY UPDATES

Matt Niskanen: Seth Rorabaugh had a chat with Pens UFA Matt Niskanen to see what he's been up to (besides getting married in Minnesota tomorrow). His agent Neel Sheehy spoke to the Penguins and informed them that Niskanen will make himself available on the open market on July 1. As many as 12 teams are believed to be interested in signing him. One of the most aggressive will presumably be the New York Islanders.

Tomas Vokoun: Another Pens UFA, Tomas Vokoun, who many have speculated would retire, in fact appears to be fully healthy and ready to make a comeback. He will be 38 soon, but could be a good backup option for many clubs. The panel on 120Sports discusses whether signing Vokie would be a good idea (this is a video link).

Brooks Orpik: There aren't any firm news on Brooks Orpik yet, other than the Pens haven't ruled out re-signing him but other teams are calling as well. I did have a funny dream about him: It's my 45th birthday party, and Brooks Orpik shows up at my house wearing his white #44 road jersey. He gives me a #45 Pens jersey as a birthday present. That was the dream, but in reality I will be 45 on 1/19/15, and guess where the Pens are scheduled to be that evening? Mike Darnay was horrified and didn't find this to be funny at all.

Jussi Jokinen: Teams are calling and more will be calling. If you've got an Evgeni Malkin or someone of his caliber, Jussi is the guy for you.

Brian Gibbons: Penguins are interested in re-signing Brian Gibbons and plan on talking with him at the draft. He is looking for a one-way deal.

We'll keep posting more news as they become available.

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