The Pittsburgh Penguins remain interested in hiring Kristopher Letang and Evgeni Malkin. The two veterans will become Unrestricted Free Agents on July 13th.
In an interview with local media, team president Brian Burke said renewing the contracts of the two star players is General Manager Ron Hextall’s top priority.
“We’ll see who stays before we start thinking about new players that could join our team. Ron has been negotiating with Letang and Malkin’s agents for several weeks. However, we will keep these discussions private. »
“Our goal, of course, is to keep these two players in the organization with deals that please both sides,” Burke said.
Rob Rossi, page the athletesaid the Penguins would first like to agree on a long-term deal with Letang before speeding up negotiations with Malkin.
The 35-year-old Letang had 10 goals and 68 points in 78 games this season as he served the final year of an eight-year, $58 million contract at an average salary of $7.25 million. He added a goal and four points in seven playoff games as the Penguins were eliminated by the New York Rangers in the first round.
Letang was selected in the third round of the 2005 draft and made his debut for the Penguins in the 2006–07 season. In 941 career games with the team, he scored 144 goals and had 650 points. He is a two-time Stanley Cup winner with the team after missing the 2017 playoffs through injury.
Malkin, a three-time Stanley Cup winner with the team, has 20 goals and 42 points in 41 games this season after undergoing knee surgery last summer. He added three goals and six points in seven playoff games.
The 35-year-old center, who was picked runner-up overall in 2004, scored 444 goals and 1,146 points in 981 games for the Penguins. He just ended his eight-year, $76 million contract at an average salary of $9.5 million.
Pittsburgh has $23.2 million in play this season, according to CapFriendly, after offering Bryan Rust a six-year, $30.5 million contract extension.
Goaltender Casey DeSmith is also among the team’s free agents, while Kasperi Kapanen and Danton Heinen will be restricted free agents.