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Pittsburgh wants to make this summer a big one

Jun 24, 2012, 11:14 AM EDT

Ray Shero Getty Images

Penguins GM Ray Shero was able to make Friday night of the NHL Draft a memorable one for Penguins fans, but according to Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, he wants to make this summer one to never forget.

Their plan is to pursue the two top players on the market, Nashville defenseman Ryan Suter and New Jersey winger Zach Parise, sources told the Tribune-Review this weekend at the NHL Entry Draft.

Team sources said Sidney Crosby soon will sign a new contract in the range of 10 to 13 years with an average annual salary of between $9 million and $10 million and will try to recruit Parise, his longtime friend, and Suter.

Signing the two biggest free agents on the market to go along with locking up the team captain for the foreseeable future would make for perhaps the best summer in Pittsburgh since they hit the Crosby lottery.

Signing Crosby to a long-term contract seems like a no-brainer, but landing Suter and Parise is the type of thing you only accomplish on video games. Rossi notes Crosby and Parise are good friends and that Pittsburgh’s wealth of stars could help Suter fit in as there won’t be much attention paid to him through all that.

  1. freneticgarfieldfan - Jun 24, 2012 at 11:19 AM

    …and of course they all come with a huge steeltown discount to fit under the cap.

  2. mclovinhockey - Jun 24, 2012 at 11:22 AM

    Well they gave up their best playoff player this year and a very decent defenseman for a decent player, handful of prospects and getting a great back up… So far I would say its a step back but they have enough cap space to look scary as well.
    I hope Sid takes 10 mill a year… That would be a nice little pay bump for a player who deserves it.

    • lordfletcher - Jun 24, 2012 at 11:45 AM

      as a Wild fan I think you are seeing that trade in a whole different angle than I ….

      I think the trade was a great move and filled the void of Staal very well. Sutter has great potential and adding top draft picks is always a great move for any teams future. I do not like the Pouliot pick personally, I think Trouba or Forsberg would have been fantastic moves and one that I would have crapped my pants if they were able to pull that off. Getting Maatta at #22 is a STEAL and in my eyes a top dman in this draft with huge potential.

    • dizzle50 - Jun 24, 2012 at 11:01 PM

      spoken like a person who hasn’t seen any penguins hockey games in the last two years. the minor league wilkes-barre pens have a bench so deep at both forward and defense that we essentially have 1.5 NHL teams. Staal was a wonderful luxury. But he was a luxury not a need. We could have traded him for a Sheetz MTO and still be in great shape.

  3. paperkid96 - Jun 24, 2012 at 11:27 AM

    I think Parise and Suter should do a one hour special on NBC Sports to announce where they go.

  4. lordfletcher - Jun 24, 2012 at 11:41 AM

    so after giving Crosby / Malkin / Letang / Sutter, raises within the next 24 months….. they will somehow have enough cash to bring in the likes of Parise or Suter now ?????????????? The Pens have $14 in cap space currently with 18 roster spots. After you fill in the remaining spots you’re closer to $10 million and then add the raise to Crosby, sitting somewhere near $9. That does leave room to get Parise but they will be screwed long term if the sign Parise or Suter to a 5+ year deal.

    Malkin’s next contract will be similar to Crosby’s or at least I am guessing….
    Letang is set to make a nice chunk of change on his next deal, almost doubling what he makes now, almost…..
    Sutter might be close to the $4-4.5 per year player within 2 years in Pitts.

    Parise and Suter are looking to make $7++++

    Good luck fitting that all in…. I think it’s more likely that they make a trade than bring in the two top free agents, and those free agents will be getting huge offers from a few teams to drive the price up….

    sorry for the ramble and terrible layout of my post. I am barely awake and still in bed. ugh.

    • biasedhomer - Jun 24, 2012 at 11:47 AM

      Well based on what Im hearing from the Pens fans, they have amazing can’t miss stud prospects who are NHL ready in the minors. So it’s ok for Malkin, Crosby, Parise, and Suter to have half of the cap space.

      • lordfletcher - Jun 24, 2012 at 12:27 PM

        “Well based on what Im hearing from the Pens fans, they have amazing can’t miss stud prospects who are NHL ready in the minors.”

        LOL.

        is this a real post? You’re telling me Pens fans think they have can’t miss prospects in their farm system. HA. you don’t say…. There is no such thing as can’t miss prospects….

        your “half the cap space” comment fails to list any defensemen and MAF. Good luck with that.

      • lordfletcher - Jun 24, 2012 at 1:49 PM

        if the Pens are able to ship Martin out of town and bring little back in cap hit… They are real players for Parise then.

        I still think they are leaving huge gaps in their defense but they will try to out muscle each team in their top 6 forwards. If healthy, it could work…

      • napoleonblownapart6887 - Jun 25, 2012 at 9:49 AM

        I wouldn’t necessarily characterize them as “can’t miss prospects” (we’re not going to be calling up the next Nugent-Hopkins or Tavares) but there’s definitely some NHL ready talent in Wilkes-Barre.

        I think the notion that you can’t win with X number of players taking up Y% of your salary cap is silly. You can absolutely win a cup with several mega-stars and role players. It’s just three things that have to be taken into account:
        1) Your coaching has to be stellar. Inevitably all the stars aren’t going to be out on the ice at one time, so your coach needs to make the other players able to pull their weight.
        2) You can’t get hurt. If Malkin does his knee again or if Crosby gets his bell rung it becomes a MAJOR deal.
        3) Your special teams better be STELLAR. When you have all that talent on the ice, you better be able to capitalize on the PP chances, and you can’t let the PK become any less of a focus.

        Ultimately I think the Pens get Parise and not Suter (unless one decides to take a discount).

    • xavier46 - Jun 24, 2012 at 3:43 PM

      The Red Wings have been loaded with stars for years. Players took discounts to play there to win the cup. If a few guys shave 500k-1M+ a year off a deal in order to win a cup, it adds up quickly. If they do this, they will certainly have to retool in 3-4 years, but that’s what they are doing now.

      If Shero manages it right and players take less money for a greater chance to win the cup, they could develop into a long-term powerhouse.

  5. bgsusteelers - Jun 24, 2012 at 12:40 PM

    If they can somehow dump Paul Martin’s salary, then I think it’s possible. However, even if they could do that I don’t think they would land both guys. In fact, I wouldn’t even want them to. That would be $19M in space. I would sign Parise to $7M or so, then sign a guy like Moen and a solid defender around $8M combined. Then use the remaining money for Sid and to fill out the roster.

    • napoleonblownapart6887 - Jun 25, 2012 at 9:38 AM

      I agree completely with this sentiment. The notion that the Pens are going to target Parise and Suter makes sense, but it doesn’t mean that if they sign one of them that they would continue to pursue the other. Unless Parise and Suter are both willing to take below market value (which I suppose is possible but not likely) then we’ll hopefully get one of them.

      My guess would be Parise. Parise and Crosby are friends, Crosby wants a winger on his line and Parise wants to be playing with a top-flight center on a contender. Things seem to align nicely there.

      As for the defense, I would be okay with dumping Martin and Michalek and replacing them with what we already have. I think you can make something pretty solid out of Letang, Orpik, Niskanen, Lovejoy, Strait, and Despres. But if you can sign another veteran to play on one of the top 2 lines… even better. If that veteran happens to be Ryan Suter then I’ll be ecstatic if not incredibly surprised.

      • bihler7 - Jun 25, 2012 at 10:13 AM

        that defensive 6 napoleon is not good enough to win you a stanely cup, you need a better player in the top 4, despres will eventually get there but not this year….lovejoy needs to go or just keep being the 7th guy, i am sorry but he is not top 6, i would play bortuzzo in the top 6 before i would play lovejoy…i am not sure how this all works out, Ray has his job cut out and one can only hope that he is able to sign at least one of them…remember niskanen hasnt signed anything yet either

        it cerainly sounds like parise and suter are the two remaining pieces that Ray wants to complete the team build, however do not discount a trade for say bobby ryan or keith yandle if Suter and/or Parise do not work out, both guys would be cheaper and Ray can’t play all of these young defensemen down the line and they are all worth the most right now in trade discussions…

      • bihler7 - Jun 25, 2012 at 10:14 AM

        heck we both forgot about engelland, but my point still stands about needing a better top 4 dman

      • napoleonblownapart6887 - Jun 25, 2012 at 12:28 PM

        Wow we did both forget about Engelland – haha whooooops.

        In the event that we were to fill in on the back end with Despres and Strait (maybe Bortuzzo or Picard, heck even Morrow) I think there is enough talent that over the course of a season they would be able to progress and mix-and-match to make a run at the cup. It would definitely be a weak link, but I don’t know that it would necessarily preclude us from the cup.

        If they could get Suter and Parise I think that’s a pipe dream. I would actually prefer to get Suter as opposed to Parise so that he could take over the veteran presence on the defense.

  6. florida76 - Jun 24, 2012 at 12:58 PM

    In reality, signing EITHER Suter or Parise would make it a spectacular summer, since Sid will be back with a new contract. Absolutely love the Staal trade, he rejected a strong offer and wanted to move on anyway.

    Shero, the management team, and ownership, are reasons why the Pens future will continue to be bright, even after the Crosby/Malkin era is over.

    • biasedhomer - Jun 25, 2012 at 12:26 AM

      How can you be so sure the Pens future will be so bright after Malkin and Crosby.

      Do you remember Mario and Jagr, a better combo then the current duo. So what happened when that era was over? The Pens pretty much were up for sale and would have been moved to Canada, had not Bettmen stepped in. The team after all did end up as bad as the current Islanders, 6 straight lottery picks I believe.

      • danaking - Jun 25, 2012 at 4:17 PM

        That was pre-cap, when Pittsburgh had to sell off players to make payroll. While the cap makes it difficult for Shero to add to what he has, it also keeps him from having to break up the team too dramatically.

  7. mrdonkeydick - Jun 24, 2012 at 1:36 PM

    Parise is a must sign for the pens, Suter not that much. You need orpik to get health and martin to do what he once did in New Jersey. Ok maybe that is asking to much.

  8. zaksyuk - Jun 24, 2012 at 2:40 PM

    STAY AWAY FROM PARISE AND SUTER SHERO THEY ARE REDWINGS GOSH DARN IT ! You can have Semin and Wideman cause you love the capitals!

  9. ironcity6pak - Jun 24, 2012 at 3:13 PM

    This has the making of possible the greatest team of all time. Star power wise.

  10. greej1938l - Jun 24, 2012 at 3:40 PM

    I want to get 9 million a year

  11. btf27 - Jun 24, 2012 at 4:19 PM

    get parise

  12. dannythebisforbeast - Jun 24, 2012 at 4:52 PM

    I think detroit had more veterans come in at a discount for cup runs but praise and suter are young and have yet to earn their big buck contract. They are looking to get paid don’t kid yourself. In case u haven’t noticed NJ was in the finals pittsburgh wasn’t so who’s closer to winning

    • miketoasty - Jun 24, 2012 at 7:38 PM

      Yes but neither of New Jerseys goalies have committed to playing next year which could screw them over. Plus New Jersey is supposedly close to bankruptcy so personally I would not sign a long term deal there.

    • steelcity412 - Jun 24, 2012 at 10:32 PM

      i hope your not implying that new jersey is a better place to obtain the cup ?!? i mean they had a hell of a run but the pens have a way more brighter future for winning championships then the devils at the present time .

  13. jhuck92 - Jun 24, 2012 at 11:23 PM

    Malkin, Crosby, Suter, AND Parise?? That big 4 would give Miami’s big 3 a run for it’s money as most-stacked N. American sports team

  14. andyreidisfat - Jun 25, 2012 at 1:29 AM

    I really hate to break the news to Pittsburgh fans but no team can win with 4 players taking up better than half the CAP room. Unless they remove the cap all together. But if that happens Nobody is going to get anyone except the Flyers because Snyder has more money than almost every owner and wants a title really bad before he dies.

    If i were the Pen i would have kept Stall and traded MAlkin. They probably could have sent Malkin to the Oilers for the first pick.

    • zaksyuk - Jun 25, 2012 at 7:39 AM

      OH YEA WELL OUR OWNER IN DETROIT IS WORTH OVER A BILLION SO WHAT NOW BUDDY

  15. vokounviolatesvirginvag - Jun 25, 2012 at 9:05 AM

    ah i love how everyones getting so jealous of the franchise!!! everyone in the nhl wishes they.could be a part of the greatest sports town of all time. shero is a god and makes all of your gms look like pathetic rookies. all hail soup can army and its powers!!! lets go parise make the move!!

  16. GenoPringles - Jun 25, 2012 at 10:28 AM

    I can see where the rest of the NHL gets jealous. The Soupcan army is all ready favored to win the cup, before adding these free agents. What a game changer Lord Shero is, his wife is one lucky woman

  17. xjokerz - Jun 26, 2012 at 4:47 AM

    Detroit fans jealous of garbage penguin fans whom just 5 years ago were on the brink of running the team out of Pittsburgh ?… Yea bro us in Michigan are realllll jealous …. Anyway suter and parise are heading to Detroit. We here the same stories all day too … Carry on

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