Penguins Rumors: Latest Free-Agent Updates and Trade Chatter

Franklin SteeleAnalyst IIJuly 1, 2014

NEW YORK, NY - MAY 07:  Chris Kunitz #14 of the Pittsburgh Penguins celebrates his third period goal with teammate Sidney Crosby #87 against the New York Rangers during Game Four of the Second Round in the 2014 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden on May 7, 2014 in New York City.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Penguins have been quick and decisive in the opening two days of free agency. They've locked up Christian Ehrhoff for one year according to sources. Not surprisingly, Jussi Jokinen ended up elsewhere, and so did Brooks Orpik and Matt Niskanen. They did manage to add a solid depth scorer in Blake Comeau though, and retained the services of Marcel Goc.

Here's a look at the Pittsburgh Penguins moves thus far in free agency, beginning with the most recent.

Update: July 2, 12:40 p.m. ET by Franklin Steele

Pittsburgh has added another guy that could be considered a bottom-six threat in Steve Downie. He's been able to thrive offensively in the right situations before though, and could be a stealthy add for Rutherford.

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Update: July 2, 12:30 p.m. ET by Franklin Steele

With the free agent pool of forwards drying up quickly, the Penguins elected to re-sign deadline pickup Marcel Goc for one season. Not a bad depth signing by Rutherford.

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Update: July 1, 5:01 p.m. ET by Brad Kurtzberg

As expected, former Penguins defenseman Matt Niskanen has signed elsewhere. He inks a seven-year deal worth $40.25 million. Some teams scared off by the seven-year term but the Capitals step up and sign Niskanen.

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Update: July 1, 3:47 p.m. ET by Franklin Steele

It might be a good sign that the Penguins didn't match this offer for Deryk Engelland.

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Update: July 1, 1:56 a.m. ET by Franklin Steele

Pittsburgh has lost forward Tanner Glass to the New York Rangers.

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Update: July 1, 1:27 a.m. ET by Franklin Steele

Pittsburgh looking to add some depth at forward today, and they did just that by signing Comeau.

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Update: July 1, 1:15 a.m. ET by Franklin Steele

Penguins add some depth in goal with Thomas Greiss.

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Update: July 1, 11:54 a.m. ET by Franklin Steele

Orpik wasn't expected back in Pittsburgh, and he's heading to the Washington Capitals.

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Update: July 1, 11:54 a.m. ET by Franklin Steele

It only took Jokinen an hour to find the money and term he was looking for. He's headed to the Florida Panthers.

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Update: July 1, 11:08 a.m. ET by Franklin Steele

The Penguins have added Ehrhoff at a decent cap hit for one season.

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This has been an interesting offseason for the Pittsburgh Penguins. It seems like there's a new wrinkle in the ongoing storylines every day, and the intrigue of July 1 truly pales in comparison to what's been happening in Pittsburgh since it was bounced out of the postseason by the New York Rangers.

Jim Rutherford took over as the organization's new general manager on June 6 and has been methodically leaving his fingerprints all over the team since. Whether he's been doing a good or bad job comes down to who you ask.

The first move of Rutherford was to cut ties with a head coach that he'd never spoken to. Searching for a new bench boss brought more drama than it probably should have, as the Penguins struck out on a handful of their top candidates before settling on Mike Johnston.

Then there was the James deal at the NHL draft—a move that didn't bring Pittsburgh a better player or clear any cap space. Given these curious choices, it only seems natural to assume that more shakeups could be coming down the pipe for the Penguins.

With only 14 players signed to play next season and less than $15 million to work with, the next few days could be season-defining for Rutherford and the Penguins. It seems likely that the team will be forced to move forward without Matt Niskanen and Jussi Jokinen.

What other changes will the opening of free agency bring to Steel City?