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What if Phil... keeps saying no?

May 24, 2019, 10:30 AM ET [208 Comments]
Ryan Wilson
Pittsburgh Penguins Blogger • RSSArchiveCONTACT
It is pretty obvious that Jim Rutherford is ready to move on from his greatest individual success as the Penguins general manager. Phil Kessel isn’t likely to be a Penguin anymore. He’s already tabled a trade proposal to Minnesota and we will see if Phil changes his mind about joining the Wild. At this stage Phil doesn’t appear to be enamored with the idea

This raises a bigger question. What if Phil keeps saying no? Sure, he has eight teams he can’t say no to, but that is a limited pool. Those eight teams have to know the Penguins predicament. They now know the Penguins really want to move Kessel. What if the deals aren’t great? Are the Penguins going to sell off Kessel for pennies on the dollar just to get rid of him because of culture reasons? That worked great for the Sabres and Ryan O’Reilly...

There’s a real threat the Penguins will trade away Kessel for beans rather than just have him back. You don’t magically make up the value lost. The Penguins don’t have any futures to make up the lost value. They don’t have anything to steal from the future to pay for the now. Here is a good point I saw on Twitter

Again, if you trade Phil Kessel you don’t have Phil Kessel.

If Phil decides to exercise his CBA bargained rights and other teams play their leverage I don’t see a path to a successful trade for the Penguins, at least one that leaves them in a better spot as a better team.

Rutherford might find himself getting caught in a bluff and have to fold. Ironic when talking about Kessel.

Thanks for reading!
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