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When Ray Shero, unable to resign Jordan Staal, was forced to trade him to the Carolina Hurricanes at the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, it was obvious that it was a trade he didn't want to make.
Now, however, it seems as though he may have an opportunity to essentially undo that regretful, yet necessary, deal as he looks to bring Ryan Kesler to Pittsburgh this summer.
Having reportedly offered a first-round pick, Brandon Sutter and the Canucks' choice of either Simon Despres or Brian Dumoulin, Shero will have time and assets to sweeten the deal this summer.
In addition, the Canucks' ownership will likely be more willing to make the deal then having weathered the Roberto Luongo saga and the accusations by fans that the team was giving up on the season while still in playoff contention.
For his part, Kesler, despite public denials from both he and general manager Mike Gillis, seems to be looking to move and Pittsburgh is reportedly at the top of his wish list.
As a former Selke Trophy winner who can play both wing and center and has two years remaining on his contract with a cap hit of $5 million, a trade for Kesler makes sense from both a financial and a hockey standpoint, especially when the expectation that Brandon Sutter will be looking for $4 million per year in his next contract is factored in.
Given Shero's penchant for making blockbuster deals and his widely known desire to return to the three-center model that the Pens employed when then won the Stanley Cup with in 2009, if Kesler isn't wearing black and gold on opening night next season, it won't be for lack of effort on his part.