Evgeni Malkin, Kris Letang and Bryan Rust.
NHL trade rumors for May 16, 2022 feature the Pittsburgh Penguins and Evgeni Malkin, Kris Letang and Bryan Rust.

The Pittsburgh Penguins had a disappointing end to the season by blowing a 3-1 series lead to the New York Rangers. It did not help that Sidney Crosby missed a game and a half from a hit to the head. But they still lost and have big decisions to make this offseason.

NHL rumors floated around earlier this season about Evgeni Malkin not re-signing with the team and Kris Letang signing with the Montreal Canadiens in the offseason.

Pittsburgh has over $28 million in salary cap space available for next season, which is great, but the problem is, they have nine unrestricted free agents and two restricted free agents to re-sign.

Unrestricted Free Agents

  • Evgeni Malkin (F)
  • Kris Letang (D)
  • Bryan Rust (F)
  • Casey DeSmith (G)
  • Rickard Rakell (F)
  • Evan Rodrigues (F)
  • Brian Boyle (F)
  • Louis Domingue (G)
  • Nathan Beaulieu (D)

Restricted Free Agents

  • Kasperi Kapanen (F)
  • Danton Heinen (F)

Malkin and Letang have stated they want to be a Penguin until they retire, but are they willing to take less money to re-sign instead of going to the open market in free agency?

Bryan Rust is an unrestricted free agent and will be looking for a pay raise from his current salary of $3.5 million/year. He has had three straight seasons with at least 20 goals. If the Pens do decide to re-sign Malkin and Letang, it is likely Rust is lost to free agency. But if one of Letang or Malkin leaves, the Pens will do everything they can to re-sign him.

Like so many other teams in the league, the NHL salary cap causes havoc on good teams.



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