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Ryan Suter: Penguins Smart to Pursue Defenseman and Free Agent Zach Parise

NEWARK, NJ - FEBRUARY 05: Marc-Andre Fleury #29 of the Pittsburgh Penguins makes a glove save as teammate Brooks Orpik #44 and Zach Parise #9 of the New Jersey Devils look for the rebound at Prudential Center on February 5, 2012 in Newark, New Jersey.  (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
Mike Stobe/Getty Images
Nicholas GossCorrespondent INovember 1, 2016

The Pittsburgh Penguins might not be done making major roster acquisitions after a busy draft weekend for the team.

According to Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, the Penguins are looking at the possibility of signing Zach Parise as a free agent and acquiring Ryan Suter's negotiating rights.

#pens will make play for Parise if they can move Martin, just was told ... Team trying to clear space to find Crosby a winger

— Rob Rossi (@RobRossi_Trib) June 23, 2012

Told #pens are looking into rights to Ryan Suter. They tried similar with Hamhuis 2 years ago #nhldraft

— Rob Rossi (@RobRossi_Trib) June 23, 2012

I can't imagine the Penguins adding both of these players, but signing one of them could certainly be a possibility.

Pittsburgh is one or two moves away from being the best team in the NHL again. These moves don't have to be major signings in free agency; they just need to plug the small number of holes on the roster.

One of those holes, as Rossi mentions above, is finding Crosby a winger. The Penguins need more firepower on the wings, and they cannot rely on James Neal to dominate offensively like he did this season.

Parise would be the perfect winger for Crosby because he always puts himself in a great position to receive passes, whether he's in the neutral zone or the offensive zone, and he can keep up with Crosby because of his speed and high motor.

The Devils captain is also a physical player and forechecks very well, which would add another dimension to a Penguins forward group that doesn't have many players who excel at playing a heavy style of hockey.

GLENDALE, AZ - MAY 07:  Ryan Suter #20 of the Nashville Predators skates with the puck in Game Five of the Western Conference Semifinals against the Phoenix Coyotes during the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Jobing.com Arena on May 7, 2012 in Glendale, A
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

If Pittsburgh were to sign Suter, they would then change their blue line from a weakness into a great strength. Suter is the top pairing defenseman that the Penguins need, especially when you consider that they play in an Atlantic division that is full of teams with quality goal scorers.

Adding Parise or Suter to their team next season would instantly make the Penguins the favorites to win the Stanley Cup.

 

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