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Report: Penguins offer Letang an eight-year, $54 million deal

Jun 27, 2013, 9:19 PM EDT

Pittsburgh Penguins v Boston Bruins - Game Four Getty Images

Pittsburgh Penguins general manager Ray Shero is reportedly making as strong a bid as he can to lock up defenseman Kris Letang.

The 26-year-old Letang, who was operating at more than a point-per-game rate throughout the regular season, has one more year remaining on a four-year, $14 million contract.

Citing sources, Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported Thursday evening that Letang was offered an eight-year contract, worth “around $54 million.”

Update: According to Pierre LeBrun of ESPN and TSN, Letang’s camp informed the Penguins they would be turning down the club’s eight-year offer.

This past regular season, Letang had 38 points in 35 games. He also had 16 points in 15 playoff games, before the Penguins were eliminated by the Boston Bruins in the Eastern Conference final.

The past few days, the rumor mill has been churning around Letang.

There was a report that Letang was worried about his future with the Penguins, and that if a trade were necessary, he’d prefer to go to the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Letang’s agent, Kent Hughes, quickly denied his client had interest in going to Toronto.

 

  1. burgh916 - Jun 27, 2013 at 9:27 PM

    Please don’t accept this Kris… Ugh…
    I prefer not to be tied down by the cap with 3 players (1 of which clearly isn’t on the level of the other two to be considered “franchised.”

    • apkyletexas - Jun 27, 2013 at 11:30 PM

      I wonder what that feels like – to turn down $54 million dollars.

      $54 million freaking dollars.

      It’s got to feel crazy.

      • burgh916 - Jun 27, 2013 at 11:33 PM

        Oh, no doubt. I’m only thinking of the teams future, it would handcuff us for quite some time. Not only that, but he seems to already have turned it down (Posted a link below.) But in any case, I’ll accept the contract haha!

      • apkyletexas - Jun 28, 2013 at 1:00 AM

        I agree – it would be a bad contract for the Pens.

        And I think the Pens need to get the kind of defenders they fielded in 2008-2009. Those guys were all grit. They weren’t worried about scoring a point a game – they were selling out their bodies on every play to stop the puck from going in their goal.

        Not every guy at every position on the team has to be a good looking, point-per-game scorer with a gorgeous girlfriend and a huge paycheck. Somebody has to be willing to get dirty. The Bruins proved that the Pens didn’t have enough of those guys.

      • bobhpine - Jun 28, 2013 at 10:44 AM

        The Pens salary structure is top heavy at the moment, but in the salary cap isn’t staying at 64 million. In three years when it is up around 85, 41 mil for your 8 best players will make perfect sense, especially when two of those eight players are the very best in the world.

        Personally, I think Letang should be traded. He isn’t very good on the power play and he still has killer defensive lapses at the worst moments. I wonder if he will ever be able to fix that part of his game or if you’ll always have to take the good with the bad with him. If Letang wants money, he should turn Shero’s deal; he can do better. But if Crosby and Malkin are taking less money, why should the Pens let Letang grab the rest of their cap space with both hands? Not worth it.

    • burgh916 - Jun 27, 2013 at 11:36 PM

      Also – Going to reply this here, since it’s at the top and people will most likely want to know as they read down…
      - Pierre LeBrun

      Also told that Letang camp counter-offered with a long-term deal which would pay less than $8 M (north of $7.5 M); Pens said too high

      You’ve got to be kidding me…

      • steelers88 - Jun 28, 2013 at 8:06 AM

        Letang has to be reasonable if he really wants to stay with the Penguins he would have taken this deal. I have a feeling that Letang will be with a different team come the end of the week.

      • drone501 - Jun 28, 2013 at 8:26 AM

        if he plays out his option no one will pay him near the money he wants.

  2. killerpgh - Jun 27, 2013 at 9:29 PM

    This has Jordan Staal part 2 written all over it. A fair deal gets “leaked”. Fans than understand the reason behind trading a important member of the club if it is not accepted.

  3. dirt2013 - Jun 27, 2013 at 9:29 PM

    An OK deal if it doesn’t have a no movement clause.If it does then they 40 mil tied up in 6 players with 25 mil per year for the next 8 years with no trades for 3 players.

    • drone501 - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:23 PM

      maybe the pens can pick 2 or 3 fans out of the crowd each night to fill out the roster.

  4. atwatercrushesokoye - Jun 27, 2013 at 9:30 PM

    So far for 2014-15 the Penguins have 7 players under contract at a cost of $37.95 million, add in this contract and it’s 8 players at $44.6 million, even if the cap were immediately to jump back to $70 million (it won’t) the Pens have about $25 million for 15 players. The Penguins are a mess, they’re being led into salary cap hell by a desperate GM, this is going to be a train wreck!

    • killerpgh - Jun 27, 2013 at 9:49 PM

      How is it going to be a train wreck? So far the 7 players signed are Crosby, Malkin, Martin, MAF, Kunitz, Neal and Beau Bennett. With the new contracts to Crosby/Malkin/Kunitz the total cap hit they account for has increased 1.3 million for the 2014 season over what they cost for the 2013 season. If Letang signs this rumored deal his Cap hit would increase about 3 million starting in 2014. So now those 4 would account for a total increase of 4.3 million against the cap in 2014 more than they did in 2012. The Penguins did pretty good this season winninng the East and making it to the EFC (although it was a dissapointting series once they got there). And before they added Iginla/Morrow/Murray/Jokenin they were on pace to finish the season with a salary cap of less than 62 million. It’s not going to be easy, but far from a “train wreck” for a solid GM like Shero. And if all else fails he still has 2 buyouts he could use before next season if need be….MAF?

      • atwatercrushesokoye - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:35 PM

        It’s a train wreck because the Penguins are becoming too top heavy with contracts, because of that you start counting on players on entry level deals to play bigger and bigger roles on your team, but you start taxing your system and you just can’t keep up.

        Buying out Fleury doesn’t really help though, his cap hit is $5 million, any starting goalie they bring in (assuming he’s a cup winning capable goalie) will have around the same cap hit so the move will be neutral.

      • killerpgh - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:47 PM

        You mean like the goalie that won the Stanley Cup this year? Crawford-2.66 cap hit or Quick who had a 1.8 cap hit when the Kings won the Cup 2 years ago?

      • atwatercrushesokoye - Jun 27, 2013 at 11:08 PM

        Do the Pens have a goalie in the system like Quick or Crawford? To get a goalie like that as a free agent it will be $4-5 million or cap neutral. I suppose they could go out and trade for one but they’ll have to trade from the prospects that they’ll be counting on to fill big roles because of their cap situation.

      • stakex - Jun 27, 2013 at 11:13 PM

        If they were to sign Letang to this contract, and it looks like he isn’t going for it, but if they did… they would have $44 million tied up in seven skaters and a goalie. That means they would have only $20 million to sign no less then 13 skaters and a good backup (need a plan B with Fleury).

        Those 13 additional players would see more ice time as a whole then the other seven. Crosby and Malkin can’t be on the ice the entire game you know, and with so little cap space left the Pens would pretty much be fielding a 2/3 AHL quality team. It would also leave the Pens no money to path up the issues that have seen them embarrassed in the playoffs the last two seasons.

        If you can’t see why that’s a huge issue there is no point in explaining it to you.

      • spitfisher - Jun 28, 2013 at 8:30 AM

        Its a train wreck, 1st the cap is going down, 2nd to your point your cap figures are based on last year, for the most part no one is taking less money. 3rd if they attempt to make another run late in the season they need a little extra coin and trade bait and picks. 4th their top 7 guys account for almost 40% of the cap, with 13-16 players need to be signed, no doubt they’ll need a few back ups with NHL money playing in the AHL to bring up during injury or poor play.5th, are they really serious going with the same over paid goalie?

        6th using Letang as an example of 54 mill, his cap hit is not based on what he is actually be paid per year, but the number of years divided in to the sum, in other words 54 by 7 years is over 7.5 mil, even though he may only be paid 4 million in the first year.

        Pittsburgh is currently maxing out their credit card, the only thing left will be a 3rd and 4th line made up of league minimum salaries..at best with a mediocre goalie that is a head case

      • jpelle82 - Jun 28, 2013 at 9:08 AM

        malkin, letang, kunitz. their numbers wont hit until 2014-2015 when the cap goes up again. i dont want letang paid more than 6 per year so hopefully he doesnt take this deal but if he did it wouldnt be the end of the world – it doesnt change the current cap situation for the pens.

  5. hockeyfan28 - Jun 27, 2013 at 9:36 PM

    So I guess this means he gets Jordan Staaled this weekend then to a team like Edmonton cause man
    If he signs this the Penguins are going to be in cap jail for the next 5 years or so

  6. slysipops - Jun 27, 2013 at 9:47 PM

    okay so most of your cap is tied to three players………. who else makes up the team? homeless guys ?

    • devilsarethebest - Jun 27, 2013 at 9:50 PM

      Well where can I sign up to join?

  7. 19to77 - Jun 27, 2013 at 9:57 PM

    If he takes this deal, it wreaks merry havoc on their cap structure after next season.

    So it goes without saying that I really hope he does.

  8. jl9830 - Jun 27, 2013 at 9:57 PM

    To tie up so much cap space in Crosby and Letang- a serious concussion risk and poor defensive player- is really risky for Pittsburgh. They are going to regret all these contracts.

    • hockeyfan1701 - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:16 PM

      Per cap geek, “Teams receive cap relief when a player is considered to have a “bona-fide long-term injury” — injuries that cause a player to miss at least 10 games or 24 days. This is one of the most commonly misunderstood aspects of the CBA.”

      • spitfisher - Jun 28, 2013 at 8:41 AM

        Even Savard (boston) isn’t labeled long term, clearly that is a bonafide long term injury if you were to ask me. Instead Boston is given cap relief…in other words the cap amount PLUS savards money on top. If he was classified as bonafide long term, Savard would likely get the same cash owed thru insurance companies and the bruins would get 4-5 million taken off the cap.

        you would be basically asking Cindy to give up hockey like Lindros, lafontaine and others.

        We are not talking short term disability as soon as comes back you’re back in cap jail, I believe including for the time loss.

    • lordfletcher - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:19 PM

      everyone of these contracts but Malkin’s

  9. rushledger - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:08 PM

    They won’t regret Malkin and Crosbys contracts but I’m still not sold on the idea of letang making 7 mil for 8 years.

  10. burgh916 - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:16 PM

    http://www.thescore.com/home/articles/1123688-report-pens-letang-turns-down-8-year-56-million-offer
    Apparently he’s already turning it down… Bye Letang

    • drone501 - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:25 PM

      i hope your right.

      • burgh916 - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:30 PM

        Shero is trying so hard to push on with this core that has been consistently failing for the past 3 seasons. I figured by now Byslma’s unwillingness to adjust his actual strategy (rather than him throwing guys on different lines.) was reason enough that he was our biggest problem (other than Fleury.) come playoffs.
        We need fresh faces in the locker room, too many have been used to the mediocrity. I’d rather hang around the 4-8th seed and steamroll in the playoffs rather than being top 2 and not winning a cup. Wasting that much cap space on a guy who truly isn’t a franchise player would crush us.

  11. mrpinkca - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:26 PM

    Nothing against Letang, but this is not a good idea. You can’t win in the playoffs being as top heavy as Pittsburgh is. I think the dismantling Boston’s “Merlot Line” gave them should have been proof enough of that fact.

    • tampashot - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:48 PM

      Apparently the dismantling the Hawks gave the Bruins was proof that the Bruins weren’t as deep as everyone thought.

      • devilsarethebest - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:55 PM

        Yes quite a dismantling. Because they outscored them by 2 whole goals the entire series. What a blowout.

      • tdrusher225 - Jun 27, 2013 at 11:19 PM

        That’s what you call a dismantling? That was one of the closest series in the history of the Stanley Cup Final that was a minute away from going 7. Gimme a break.

      • jl9830 - Jun 28, 2013 at 12:32 AM

        What do you think “dismantling” means?

      • mrpinkca - Jun 28, 2013 at 1:16 AM

        The Penguins were dismantled by Boston, all 4 lines. Regardless of how close the Cup was, it doesn’t paint a good picture for Pittsburgh.

  12. drone501 - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:27 PM

    to leafs for reimer and a defenseman

  13. therealjr - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:35 PM

    Pittsburgh is just doing what any team would do trying to re-sign their own guy. But…

    This would be a terrible contract in about two years They should be so lucky to have him turn it down.

  14. malkinrulez - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:37 PM

    If Letang turned down an 8 year $54 million dollar contact he should be fitted for a straight jacket.

  15. thesportsjudge - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:41 PM

    Maybe the long term plan (year 3 perhaps) would be to buy him out, and just push real hard the next couple years for the Cup(s).

    • therealjr - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:48 PM

      So your take is they want to pay him $40 mil or so for 3 years of hockey. Right.

      • thesportsjudge - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:55 PM

        Where are you coming up with 40/54 mil in year 3/7?

      • thesportsjudge - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:57 PM

        3/8, my mistake.

      • therealjr - Jun 27, 2013 at 11:03 PM

        For simplicity sake let’s say it was an even $7M across the board for 8 years.

        If they bought him out after 2 years that would be $14M in salary plus (2/3 * $42M) remaining for another $28M.

        After year 3 it would be 21M in salary paid plus about $23M in buyout.

        Not to mention each of those scenarios is absurd, imprudent and unlikely.

        And of course this does not factor in his next season at $3.5M.

      • thesportsjudge - Jun 28, 2013 at 12:32 AM

        Sooo, I apologize for making a mistake (3/7, when it was 3/8) and I get downvoted? Who is the fuc%in @ssh*le?

      • mrpinkca - Jun 28, 2013 at 1:13 AM

        The point is moot, because the amnesty buyout period will be closed after next july.

      • therealjr - Jun 28, 2013 at 10:00 AM

        The point was moot right after it was made.

  16. icelovinbrotha215 - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:45 PM

    That’s alot of cabbage tied up with a couple of players. As we see every year in the playoffs, teams need depth. Contracts like this prohibit a team from having depth.

  17. pitpenguinsrulez - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:46 PM

    $54 million/8 years is just under a $7 million hit roughly. I just don’t know if I’m willing to commit that to a player that is a liability on the blue line.

    • laxman1944 - Jun 28, 2013 at 9:11 AM

      LOL……”A liability on the blue line”……FYI….He is a blueliner…..smacked a$$

  18. pizzano7416 - Jun 27, 2013 at 10:48 PM

    Saying that Tangers camp countered that deal for a deal just north of 8 mill.. Don’t think Pens are gonna bite, forcing Shero to trade him.

  19. jernster21 - Jun 27, 2013 at 11:08 PM

    If Letang turns this down (which it appears he has, if rumors are true) then he just did the Pens a huge favor. If Shero is smart he should throw 3/4 of the term and dollars at Scuderi to bring him back who was a much bigger loss to that team.

    • jernster21 - Jun 27, 2013 at 11:09 PM

      Nevermind, Scuderi is 34, so, half the term, 4.75-5m a year.

    • jmauro12 - Jun 27, 2013 at 11:16 PM

      the Pens should attempt to give Scuderi $3mil-$3.5 mil for about 2 years

      • jernster21 - Jun 27, 2013 at 11:18 PM

        The Kings will give him more than that, so would the Avs if the opportunity arose. Not saying it will or that he’s even consider it an option…but there’s more money out there to be had than that for his defensive calibur.

  20. stakex - Jun 27, 2013 at 11:19 PM

    No doubt Pens fans dodged a bullet if the rumors are true that Letang is turning this offer down.

    Still though, the Pens cap situation in 2014-2015 isn’t all that bright even without giving Letang an extension. They still only have six skaters and one goalie signed with just $26 million left to fill out the roster (14 skaters and a backup). Trades and buyouts could happen, and perhaps the Pens could work some trades where the other teams retain salary… but as of right now there is serious cap problems brewing in Pittsburgh.

    If you are a Pens fan, don’t expect a parade any time soon. The last five Cup winners have been well balanced teams that had solid goaltending and good defense. Not a chance the Pens will be a well balanced team with so much money spent on a top heavy offense, and while they might still be dominant at times during the season… they are not built to win in April.

    • brycewest - Jun 27, 2013 at 11:46 PM

      What an ignorant response. Hawks won because of a streaky goaltender (same goalie, same team defense)…goal production beat the Bruins. Kings? Goalie stood on his head. No offense whatsoever…whole way thru the season. Prior? Bruins? Offense first…add Thomas and a Vezina. Hawks? Thank the trainwreck Flyers. Penguins? Sheer offense. Wings? Solid three zone play.

      • laxman1944 - Jun 28, 2013 at 9:18 AM

        That “Trainwreck” Flyer team kicked Pitts a$$es my man and sent them home yeta again…….stick it!

    • chanceoffleury1 - Jun 28, 2013 at 12:36 AM

      Where do you figure that there are serious cap problems in Pittsburgh? All but one of their top players are signed long term. Any team that has Malkin, Crosby, Neal, Martin, Orpik, Kunitz, and Sutter performing at a decent level will be a contending team. The only question marks are their accessory guys. Letang is going to leave, but Paul Martin can take on Letang’s major duties like 1st PP unit until the prospects are done cooking. And Despres can step up and start taking more responsibility now that he’s got his feet wet in the big league. And there is no reason to believe that Shero won’t get a great return for Letang. He got a great return on Staal and the same will inevitably be done with Letang. Every other major contender is dealing with huge resignings this year or next. Boston has Horton, Bergeron and Rask, Chicago has Toews, Kane, Bickell, and Crawford, LA has Muzzin, Scuderi, and Brown. The Pens are just as tight as everyone else. As it stands right now they have more cap space next year than any of the other 3, too.

      • atwatercrushesokoye - Jun 28, 2013 at 1:48 AM

        Ummm no. Sorry but it takes a team to win the cup, not a small core of all stars. You need solid play from your third line, a few good shifts a game from your fourth line and steady play from your bottom 4 defensemen. Because of the Pens cap situation they’re going to have to count on a lot of journeymen and guys on entry level deals. And because you’re counting on so many young guys you tax your system so when the entry level contracts expire and you have to let them go you’re replacing them with low level prospects now.

        This team is in need of a retooling and a change in direction (even if it’s just the coach) but instead of facing the obvious shortcomings and taking steps to address them Shero has decided to double down on the players and coaches who won in 09, that was 4 seasons ago and the Pens haven’t even had a sniff at the cup since then, and let’s be honest they were nowhere near the class of the Bruins or Hawks, who are fully built teams.

      • chanceoffleury1 - Jun 28, 2013 at 2:44 AM

        Please go look at Chicago’s roster. They have a small core of superstars with the rest of the team filled out by guys on either rookie contracts or signed to nearly the league minimum. 11 of their forwards had cap hits under $1 million dollars.

        And besides, I worded it the way I did for an intentional reason. I never said they will win the cup with a team built this way. I just said they’d always be contenders. They very much would be. The Bruins and Hawks had really cheap shutdown goalies and a lot of grinders that were coming up big when it mattered. Teams prepare to shut down Toews, Kane, Jagr, etc. But when you have guys like Krug, Shaw, Bickell, etc. shining, teams get thrown off their game trying to deal with the superstars but now also having to worry about the new-found heroes. Everyone who watches hockey knows that superstars will win you games, but your grinders will win you championships. They did a fabulous job killing penalties, but could just never get the offense going.

      • laxman1944 - Jun 28, 2013 at 10:07 AM

        But that’s the thing Chance……Pitt is missing something.

        -Steady Defense first mentality

        -They’re loaded on offense but….it’s hard to pin point they just have performed horribly in the tournament…….

        -They just don’t handle adversity….it’s like it’s all well and good when tehy’re flying around crushing guys but when they get crushed back….they lose composure and start playing dirty.

  21. garrison1981 - Jun 28, 2013 at 1:45 AM

    DETROIT

  22. kevingreene160sacknoHOFclub - Jun 28, 2013 at 2:23 AM

    Good riddance. I’m from PGH and I’m tired of watching his play become more and more risky and boneheaded. Yes he’s elite, and yes, losing him would hurt, but plug in any offensive-minded defenseman in the Pen’s system with that roster and you’ll get good production.

    • steelers88 - Jun 28, 2013 at 9:46 AM

      I’m kinda of tired of his play to. I would love if the Penguins would trade him to Toronto it’s a win win for both teams and Kris Letang. The Leafs play Letang’s style of play run and gun and the Leafs have a lot of skilled young forwards which the Penguins need.

  23. aldog83 - Jun 28, 2013 at 3:43 AM

    I’ll take Doughty and Voynov for a combined 11 M
    Over 8 a year for Letang!!!!!

    At least they play defense!!!

    By the way Kris good luck putting up those #’s without Crosby and Malkin…..Dupius, Kunitz, and Neal..oh yeah and that Iginla guy with the 500 plus Goals!!!!

  24. jonkchar - Jun 28, 2013 at 8:32 AM

    guys, killerpgh is right- this is Jordan Staal 2 for sure

  25. pens1fan - Jun 28, 2013 at 8:43 AM

    and with the first pick of the NHL draft Colorado trades #1 pick to Pittsburgh for Kris Letang and with that pick Pittsburgh selects Seth Jones.

    Adios Letang !!!!

    • pdmjr - Jun 28, 2013 at 8:48 AM

      Seth Jones ????? How many defenseman in jr and minors do the Pens need?

      Better be Seth Jones and two real NHL players,

  26. relggigeht - Jun 28, 2013 at 10:25 AM

    Time for Letang to get tossed out of the ‘Burgh. He is an overrated offense-minded defenseman that makes too many boneheaded mistakes.

  27. gostillers - Jun 28, 2013 at 11:05 AM

    I say we move him to Edmonton for winger Nail Yakupov and rugged Dman Nick Shultz.

  28. nyrnashty - Jun 28, 2013 at 11:31 AM

    He’s going to be a UFA and about to be paid a bigger contract then what the Pens are offering. Must feel good to be in his shoes right now. If James Wisniewski gets 7 million a year look out!

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