Breaking Down The Biggest Questions That Remain For Each Penguins' Defenseman

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Paul Martin

Apr 19, 2014; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Paul Martin (7) carries the puck against the Columbus Blue Jackets during the first overtime in game two of the first round of the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs at the CONSOL Energy Center. The Columbus Blue Jackets won 4-3 in double overtime. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

There have been highs and lows for Paul Martin since signing a five-year, $25 million dollar deal with the Penguins as an unrestricted free agent back in 2009 – per CapGeek.com. Now, as he enters the last season of his contract, there are two questions he needs to answer.

First, can he finally stay healthy for an entire season? Earlier in Martin’s career, he proved he was able to play a whole season, but as he has aged, he has dealt with some injures. Particularly, he has had multiple injuries during the last two seasons.

Also, if Martin proves he still can play a whole season, will it be enough for the Penguins to sign him to an extension? Penguins’ general manager Jim Rutherford has stated that he likes Paul Martin and probably wants him re-signed due to his importance to the Pens’ defensive corps, but his unwillingness to discuss an extension till next summer may put a damper on his return.

But given Martin’s level of play when healthy, he could command a significant raise on his next contract. Even assuming the salary cap will keep increasing annually, Martin might price himself out of Pittsburgh.

 

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