Although I’m fully expecting the Pittsburgh Penguins to re-sign center Brandon Sutter, the lack of progression is starting to worry me.
And it’s getting to the point where other teams are preparing to jump at the opportunity to nab him away from Pittsburgh.
According to William DePaoli of Inside Pittsburgh Sports, the Penguins have reportedly offered Sutter an option of three different contracts, including a four-year deal, but his camp apparently wants a one-year agreement.
DePaoli is also reporting that both the Edmonton Oilers and Colorado Avalanche are keeping an eye on Sutter’s situation, meaning there’s a possibility they’ll pounce should he decline Pittsburgh’s offers.
Any offer an opposing team chooses to push in Sutter’s direction will give the Penguins a chance to match it, however, should they opt not to, his new club will be forced to give Pittsburgh draft picks as compensation under restricted free agent rules.
The idea that Sutter’s camp is rumored to want a one-year deal is probably so he can cash-out next summer – like Matt Niskanen did. Sutter showed incredible promise for this season due to his recent postseason play, and if he produces a breakout campaign, the likelihood he chases a more lucrative contract – like Niskanen – is obvious.
Pittsburgh will have more money to offer Sutter a substantial contract next summer, but how much will he demand? It’s clear that Sutter’s efficiency is on the rise, however, due to Pittsburgh’s payroll, there’s only so much cash they can sling towards him, because they’ll have to fill-out the rest of the roster’s vacancies.
As of right now, I expect Sutter to be on the Penguins this season, but as for how long his new contract will be, that I’m not so certain. He could potentially become a trade casualty, which won’t be surprising, considering how much value he has, and the possible haul Pittsburgh could receive.
To be continued.