clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Penguins Thoughts: Tomas Plekanec and Derick Brassard center trade possibilities?

Nationally the Pens have been linked a bit lately with centers from Montreal and Ottawa. We break down the news and input on this and some other items

Ottawa Senators v Pittsburgh Penguins

Thoughts on the latest Elliotte Friedman 31 Thoughts. These articles are at the most relevant this time of year as the NHL trade deadline approaches:

2. Max Domi scored his fourth of the year to open Arizona’s stunning 6–1 victory over Chicago on Monday night. It has been a hard year for the talented forward. The Coyotes are prepared to give him a fresh start, pending a fair offer. If it doesn’t come before the deadline, expect it at the draft. I do think Montreal will took a look, but I don’t know if that’s going anywhere.

This adds to what we talked about on Pensburgh last week that some in the blogosphere poo-poo’d the possibility. And it may be true that the Penguins don’t have the trade ammunition to go get a 22-year old former first round pick who has experience NHL success, but it also doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be interested in seeing the price in reality for themselves.

3. Tomas Plekanec has made clear his desire to stay in Montreal, and, on a team struggling to find centres, coach Claude Julien probably wants that to happen. There’s an extension to be had there. Now it comes down to whether or not GM Marc Bergevin gets an offer he likes.

The SBN Montreal blog Habs Eyes on the Prize did some thoughtful research on Tomas Plekanec and the realistic price seems to be a 2nd round pick if they can get it, or a 3rd and a mid-level prospect if not.

Here’s one idea from Pittsburgh - Zachary Lauzon. The Pens 2017 second round pick was heavily speculated to be selected by the Canadiens at pick 56 had Pittsburgh not taken him at 51. Lauzon’s suffered a shoulder injury this season, but would Montreal still have interest in him? Would Pittsburgh be willing to let him go for a rental?

Both questions remain unknown, but last summer Lauzon would have been more attractive to MTL than a 2018 2nd round pick. It’s possible that could still be the case now.

10. All the Senators have to do is look 200 km east to see how rough it is when you can’t compete down the middle. That’s why they prefer to hold on to Derick Brassard, although a couple other teams are asking. Riley Sheahan’s doing a nice job in Pittsburgh, but the Penguins have poked around. Also believed to be in the picture: San Jose, interested in Joe Thornton insurance. Brassard has another year, which would fit the Sharks’ philosophy of avoiding rentals.

Nice to see from a lot of sources, that as expected the Pens are at least “poking around” and trying to find out the asking price on any potentially available center. If Pittsburgh doesn’t make an upgrade we know it won’t be for a lack for effort on the part of GM Jim Rutherford and his staff. If the Senators want to hang onto Brassard though, there isn’t much Pittsburgh could do anyways in this instance. The price is likely too high at this time, as reports said it was for Ottawa not being interested in trading Jean-Gabriel Pageau.

14. As the website Cap Friendly pointed out, both Minnesota (Zach Parise) and New Jersey (Mirco Mueller) benefitted from players being allowed on injured reserve after appearing in AHL games. But there is something that makes people crazy about Lou Lamoriello doing it. With Parise/Mueller, not a peep. But Nikita Soshnikov? Wow, were teams upset.

“[Soshnikov] was running over people in the AHL yesterday!” one exec texted

Well, it’s not rocket science - there’s a difference in how Lamoriello used it from the others. Everywhere else is following the spirit of the rule and once their players are done in the AHL, they’re off of injured reserve. Lou left an apparently healthy Soshnikov on IR at the end of his AHL time because he is already at the 23-man NHL roster limit and would have to waive a player to bring him back. He’s skirting the rules to protect his roster.

Which, I mean, that’s his prerogative to navigate the gray zone of the rules how he wants, but it’s a bit shady and that’s why it’s drawn the ire of others around the league.

29. Just some names to keep an eye on, with NHL team followed by school: Brian Pinho (Washington/Providence), Ryan Donato (Boston/Harvard), Anthony Angello (Pittsburgh/Cornell), Louis Belpedio (Minnesota/Miami), David Pope (Detroit/Nebraska-Omaha), CJ Suess (Winnipeg/Minnesota St.), Jake Evans (Montreal/Notre Dame), Brandon Hickey (Arizona/Boston University — traded to the Coyotes in the Mike Smith deal), Nolan Vesey (Toronto/Maine) and Nolan Stevens (St. Louis/Northeastern). The latter Nolan, John Stevens’s son, scored a beauty in the Beanpot final.

Cool to see Angello on the national radar. He’s a junior and a 6’5 center with a mean streak that’s scored 21 points in 25 games this season at Cornell. The Pens surely will try and sign their 5th round pick from 2014 this summer so that he doesn’t play his senior season and then have the temptation to be a free agent in August 2019. You can read more about Angello and other top prospects in this great recent fanpost here on Pensburgh!