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Pending UFA Dupuis ‘absolutely’ wants to re-up with Pittsburgh

Feb 26, 2013, 11:19 AM EDT

Pascal Dupuis, Sidney Crosby

If Pascal Dupuis has it his way, he’ll be sticking with the Penguins.

That’s the word out of Pittsburgh, anyway, as the veteran winger — who will become an unrestricted free agent this summer — recently spoke with the Tribune-Review about his future.

“Yes,” Dupuis responded when asked if he wanted to re-sign. “That is absolutely what I want.”

Dupuis will be an interesting case to follow. Despite the fact he turns 34 next month and is closing in on 800 career games, the case could be made that he’s getting better with age.

Dupuis posted a career-high 25 goals last year (the most he scored since he was 23), has developed chemistry with Pens captain Sidney Crosby and is averaging over 17 minutes this season — 2:17 of that shorthanded — while sitting tied for third on the team in goals, with seven.

Based on that resume, it’s hard to imagine Pittsburgh wouldn’t want him back.

And considering Dupuis’ already made his intentions known, the discussion will likely turn to dollars and term.

He’s in the final season of a two-year, $3 million deal, one of the league’s better bargains considering his production.

The problem, of course, is that Pittsburgh’s projected cap payroll is at $53 million next year (with the cap ceiling at $64.3) — leaving about $10 million in spending money.

GM Ray Shero has decisions to make on other UFAs as well (Matt Cooke, Craig Adams, Mark Eaton) and a quartet of RFAs (Tyler Kennedy, Zach Boychuk, Dustin Jeffrey, Robert Bortuzzo).

Dupuis’ agent, Allan Walsh, said he isn’t looking to start negotiations with Shero now, but did note that he and Dupuis would be open to listening if Pittsburgh had anything to offer.

Shero admitted he admires what Dupuis brings as a player.

“He’s in great shape,” Shero told the Tribune-Review. “He can really shoot the puck. He’s solid defensively. There’s a lot of trust to his game, from his linemates to the coaching staff.

“He’s certainly matured as a player.”

  1. sportsfreak13 - Feb 26, 2013 at 11:29 AM

    Personally i let Tk walk and sign dupuis. Dupuis is one heck of a player and he plays the same wether its with sid or sutter. His speed fits into the pens system perfectly. I don’t see a scenerio where he doesnt resign with the pens.

    • killerpgh - Feb 26, 2013 at 11:38 AM

      Kennedy is probably gone. 2 million for a guy that does nothing but be an average 5 on 5 players isn’t worth it. He doesn’t kill penalties and barely sees the time on the 2 PP unit. If you replaced him with Jeffery or another WBS guy you probably would lose much and could fill that role for less than 1/3 of his price.

    • miketoasty - Feb 26, 2013 at 11:42 AM

      I think Kennedy will be a deadline deal. I don’t see letting him walk when the Pens could easily get a 6th or 7th round pick for him (Which they have shown they don’t mind doing), as long as the Pens pick up another winger before then.

      • pajabroni - Feb 26, 2013 at 12:20 PM

        TK will absolutely be gone. Rumors suggest Boston is willing to pick him. Not sure if the Pens would want to trade him to an in-conference foe but if the price is right, I am sure they would let him walk.

      • hockeywithdrawal - Feb 26, 2013 at 1:15 PM

        I think we should trade him in-Division.

  2. killerpgh - Feb 26, 2013 at 11:33 AM

    Dupuis needs to be resign. There is already a hole in top 6 forwards. Dupuis probably wouldn’t be a top 6 wingers on a lot of teams but he plays great with Sid (although he did put up solid numbers while Sid was out). It’s gonna come down to if Dupuis wants to take less money and play with Sid and possibly extend his career a year or two or go for the more money and probably end up a really good 3rd liner. Being that he has a Pitttsburgh Penguins tattoo I’m gonna guess he is leaning towards staying for less.

  3. jpelle82 - Feb 26, 2013 at 11:52 AM

    Dupuis plays like he is still 24 yrs old not 34. it should be easy to fit him under the cap, especially if they dump tk with his stupid 2 mill per year price tag. i wouldnt be surprised if they let matt cooke walk too but they have to keep adams then- just way too valuable on the pk – cant let both go. i could care less if jeffrey or boychuk is gone but i hope they hold onto bortuzzo if they cant get good value in a trade for him.

  4. Steeley McBeam - Feb 26, 2013 at 12:50 PM

    Not a scary list of FAs after this year for the Pens. Other than Dupuis the good ones are restricted. I wonder what Malkin and Letangs #’s are to that payroll. Trying not to sweat one or both of those guys being a cap casulity but its hard not to worry about it in 2014, until something gets done at least.

    Boychuck showed flashes I thought he was going to be a good pickup but he cant finish. Jeffery and Bourt should come pretty cheap.

    How about Beau Bennett! I think we found our 6th forward.

    • Steeley McBeam - Feb 26, 2013 at 12:52 PM

      BTW, I hope TK doesnt even see the end of this season with the Pens let alone the start of next…

    • ucaneverscorenoughgoals - Feb 26, 2013 at 2:03 PM

      Neither Malkin or Letang will be cap casulties. Malkin’s number will climb from 8.7 to 10.2 to come close to reflecting the first 8 years of Crosby’s new deal. That’s only an additional 1.5 million or in other words a cheap third liner or expensive forth liner.

      Letang’s number will climb from 3.5 to between 6.5 and 7 million. That will be harder to stomach but they will buy Paul Martin out before they let Letang walk even at 7 million. At 25 years old he’s a priority in their eyes and they have plenty of young talented left handed defencemen in the system to make up for cutting ties with Martin. Before this year all of us were ready to buy Martin out in september even though we couldn’t.

      Bennett’s talent is undeniable, and his vision is elite. He will gain more by remaining with the Big club for the entirety of this year than he would by being sent back down to WBS, BUT he’s not strong or experiened enough to consistently to compliment out Big two in the playoffs yet. My gut tells me he will fill a third line role if TK, a defencemen (or prospect) and a pick are moved for a top 6 winger.

  5. hockeywithdrawal - Feb 26, 2013 at 1:03 PM

    I’m wondering if TK is going to be packaged up with a D-man (which I actually don’t want to happen, but after the Eaton signing it makes me wonder) and traded off for another wing. Dupuis should stay – he’s added quite a bit to this team.

    • whiskytango333 - Feb 26, 2013 at 1:19 PM

      Its going to be hard to unload TK, he is simply terrible. Unfortunately I see despres as the carrot for any deal for the coveted “top 6 forward” (which IMO, I dont think is needed, as beau bennett will fill that role in short time).

      • hockeywithdrawal - Feb 26, 2013 at 1:31 PM

        It’s going to be hard to unload him at $2M per year, but what if they retained part of his salary for this year. I’d be willing to bet there’d be a team that might be frustrated with a wing that is ‘supposed’ to be good but hasn’t clicked, and might take a chance on TK at, say, $1M per year, just to try him out for a few months…maybe?

      • ucaneverscorenoughgoals - Feb 26, 2013 at 1:49 PM

        Well lets go with those thoughts. Despres doesn’t have to be the carrot. Engelland brings experience and toughness that’s useful during a playoff run. In addition Kennedy is a natural center who has played out of position his whole career here out of necessity. At 1 million a year in a trade he is a bargain. I find it hard to believe a former 20 goal guy who can also play center and kill penalties is worthless because he’s had a bad first 20 games because he’s playing a brand new center and he was shuffled around on lines more frequently than a deck of cards during the first 8 to 10 games of the season.

    • biasedhomer - Feb 26, 2013 at 2:42 PM

      Could probably land Visnovsky for Kennedy and a 3rd rounder.

  6. whiskytango333 - Feb 26, 2013 at 1:15 PM

    I’d say another 2 yr/3 mil a year is an appropriate contract for dupuis. Even 4m/year wouldn’t give me heartburn as he plays well with Crosby.

    • ucaneverscorenoughgoals - Feb 26, 2013 at 1:40 PM

      Slow down whiskey, I want to resign Dupuis without a doubt, but 3 or 4 million per year? That’s money you pay a 25 year old with 25 to 30 goal potential, not a 34 year old who will be best suited in a third line checking role in two years and will most likely never put up more than 20 goals again. Keep in mind you’re paying him on the average of the potential of his best AND worst years. Not a thank you for the 25 goals he scored last year.

      He is making 1.5 per year. At age 34 a two year or three year deal at 2 million or 2.25 million is all the penguins should pay him.

  7. sjsharks66 - Feb 26, 2013 at 2:16 PM

    If the pens do not want to sign TK and Dupuis send em on over to the sharks. Two great players, would love to have them over here on the west.

    They will sign both though.

  8. letsgopens8771 - Feb 26, 2013 at 4:28 PM

    Absolutely keep Duper. The chemistry he has with Sid is awesome. I would trade TK because he has been pretty worthless. I say TK, Warren Peters (or Trevor Smith), and the draft pick we got from Anaheim for Lucic. Now I ask all you Pens fans and Flyers fans if you aren’t too scared to hear this…
    Lucic-Malkin-Neal. Scariest and best line in the NHL.

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