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Report: Penguins not “actively” shopping Martin

Jun 25, 2012, 6:00 PM EDT

Paul Martin Getty Images

Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has it on “rock-solid authority” that the Penguins are not actively shopping defenseman Paul Martin.

The Penguins have, however, received expressions of interest about the 31-year-old, reports Molinari.

Martin has three years remaining on a contract that features a $5 million cap hit.

A puck-moving d-man that spent six seasons in New Jersey before signing with the Pens in the summer of 2010, his play has underwhelmed during the first two years of the five-year deal.

“I came to Pittsburgh because I wanted to win,” Martin told the Tribune-Review recently. “If you had told me this is where my game would be after a couple of years, I wouldn’t have believed it.”

It’s likely Pittsburgh GM Ray Shero will attempt to land Zach Parise, Ryan Suter, or even both free agents on July 1, in which case Martin may have to go.

Related: Pens continue to deal, send Michalek to Phoenix

  1. freneticgarfieldfan - Jun 25, 2012 at 6:13 PM

    Clearly the Pens want to get rid of Martin, especially if they after both Parise and Suter (who isn’t?).
    The newspapers/reporters degenerate more and more to accomplices/loudspeakers of the GMs. Where is the “added value” of such “news” and twitter feeds?

  2. billobrienschindimple - Jun 25, 2012 at 6:42 PM

    Shero did a spot on WDVE this morning and said as much. He sounded, and said, he believed Martin would have a solid bounce back after such a disappointing season.

    Said he wanted to move 1 d-man over the weekend, that happened to be Michalek in this case.

  3. mmmpierogi - Jun 25, 2012 at 6:47 PM

    If there’s any kernel of truth to this, then it’s lame. Even if they weren’t trying to land Parise or Suter, Martin played like garbage last year.

    • miketoasty - Jun 25, 2012 at 7:50 PM

      Your looking at it the wrong way. If the Pens don’t get suter then they will need as many experienced D around as possible being that probably 2 or 3 of their starters next year will be rookies or only have minimal experience.

  4. bmscalise - Jun 25, 2012 at 6:58 PM

    I’m also sure the Pens are listening to trade offers. But I’m also quite certain that they aren’t looking to drop him for a bag of pucks like they did Z. Michalek. Shero said he was looking to drop 1 defenseman – ZM or PM – and Z was the trade that happened.

    The howling yinzers have gone so overboard about this guy. He had an inconsistent, disappointing season – dragged down by an injured Michalek who played terribly for most of the year. As soon as they put him with Letang – he went from a -13 to a +11 to end the year. Then he got a concussion in Game 1 of the Flyers series. He and ZM weren’t disappointing their entire tenure in Pittsburgh – just last year. The Pens defense in 2010-11 was excellent, with those 2 serving as the shutdown pair. The team just couldn’t score without Sid and Geno. The past has been rewritten by silly fans and lazy journalists who find it easier not to make distinctions.

    My point isn’t to defend Martin – but to point out that it’s ridiculous to suggest the defense is automatically better by his absence and with the cap money. The Pens already are down one top-4 defenseman. Niskanen isn’t signed yet. And despite what Pens fans seem to think, Suter is about as far from a sure thing as possible. It would be a nightmare to see the Pens #5, 6, 7 defensemen as Lovejoy, Strait, and Bortuzzo, with Engelland and Despres on the second pairing. The Pens are also not a better team by dumping PM just to dump him, overpaying for a FA like fricking Dennis Wideman, or trading away a bunch of assets (including likely another NHL defenseman) to get a guy like Yandle.

    Shero’s no fool: he know the FA pickings are slim and that defenseman of Martin’s experience and caliber are hard to come by. So do all the GMs calling him. I’m not saying Shero shouldn’t upgrade the defense: I’m saying you better be careful how you do it and definitely better not bank on Suter.

    • mickeyb21 - Jun 25, 2012 at 7:52 PM

      I have felt the same way about Martin. I think most people just look at his cap hit of $5 million and compare it to all the other defencemen on the team, especially Letang’s cap hit. When they compare what he did this past year to his cap hit, then he had an awful couple of years.

      Once people find a whipping boy, they latch onto him and only find problems in his game while ignoring the mistakes other people on the ice are making which lead to bad situations. Not saying that Martin was great all year, but he had some solid games at key points in the year. He needs his confidence back for next year. Pens need him in a top 4 role because they still need another one to fill Z’s spot, which will be difficult enough.

    • danphipps01 - Jun 25, 2012 at 10:35 PM

      On that thought, why not pair him with Letang full-time and run Orpik with Niskanen? It seems like Martin’s honestly better in the higher-offense role and Orpik’s always been their go-to defensive D, so why not try those pairings full-time next year?

      • napoleonblownapart6887 - Jun 26, 2012 at 10:48 AM

        Just look at the numbers, when he was paired with Letang he played a ton better. Yes he had a really long bad stretch but he still finished +9 after spending most of the season around -15.

        (2 of) Despres/Strait/Engelland

        You still got enough room with that to grab Parise, Sullivan, and a couple of other guys. I’d go to battle with that.

  5. heyzeus143 - Jun 25, 2012 at 11:53 PM

    get rid of him, puck movers can’t keep bodies out of the goalie’s sight lines, if he’s so damn good, then the return on trade should be half decent, get rid of him, no toughness, and he doesn’t move the puck all that well either

  6. ironcity6pak - Jun 26, 2012 at 9:15 AM

    Make it happen shero, gotta move em. Can’t be a wait n see basis if he will have a bounce back year. We are stacked with D men, give him up.

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