PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — According to reports, Penguins winger Phil Kessel may not be traded this Summer after all.
“Phil Kessel wants to stay in Pittsburgh and is using his leverage. Jim Rutherford now admits that he probably won’t trade him. GMJR opened up about many things.”
Just a couple of weeks ago, Rutherford and the Penguins had a deal in place to send Kessel to the Minnesota Wild. Rumored to be involved in the trade was fellow Penguin Jack Johnson as well as Wild forwards Jason Zucker and Victor Rask. After taking a look at the trade, Kessel decided to cancel the deal, which he can do because he has a limited-trade clause in his contract that virtually lets him decide where he plays.
Yohe reports that Rutherford believes Kessel will still be in Pittsburgh by the time the season starts up in the Fall. Rutherford also told Yohe that “changes are coming” but it is hard to say exactly what is in the works at this time.
The NHL Draft is next week, while the free agency period is set to start at the beginning of July. It is safe to say that Rutherford and the Pens will be hard at work formulating next season’s plan as the Summer continues to approach.