Rob Rossi of the Tribune-Review reports:
Add the Kings to a list of teams in the hunt for D Rob Scuderi. Minnesota and the Penguins also remain in the hunt, but I’m told the Kings are above $3 million annually on a long-term deal.
That Scuderi hasn’t accepted yet proves either: A) he is legitimately torn given the Penguins offer ($2 million annually at four or five years), of B) he, like other NHL players, can’t make enough to head west.
To play off what one of his teammates told me, "What is Scuderi waiting for?" Penguins cannot get to $3 million annual for him, or anybody.
The Kings have made no signings this year and would have the room to offer Scuderi that contract. The Penguins have about $4.7 million under the salary cap and still figure to sign a defenseman and a top 6 scoring forward at the minimum and maybe another depth defenseman and a backup goaltender.
Is Scuderi as good as gone? If the Kings are offering 3+ million for four or five years and the Pens can only barely go over $2 million, that means Scuderi would be leaving --at the bare minimum -- $5 million on the table over the life of the contract, likely the only big money contract the 30 year defenseman will be offered. And for a guy who made $725,000 last year, $5 million is a lot to give up. Heck, for anyone $5 million is a lot to give up.
You can almost feel Scuderi's dilemma. Does he take the money (ala Ryan Malone) and go to a nice climate, a nice organization but suffer what could be losing seasons? Or does he take Pittsburgh's offer and stay in the organization that he knows and where he fits?
We may soon have the answer to that question. Quite honestly, no one blames him for whatever it is he decides, and really not too many fans feel sorry for him making the tough decision. Lots of us would love to decide which NHL team will be paying us millions for the next four-five years to play hockey.