Pittsburgh Penguins: The Case to Trade Phil Kessel

NASHVILLE, TN - JUNE 11: Phil Kessel
NASHVILLE, TN - JUNE 11: Phil Kessel /

The trade rumours have been going around, and many people are now debating whether Phil Kessel should be traded by the Pittsburgh Penguins or not.

The Pittsburgh Penguins could do many things with Phil Kessel. After all, he is an elite winger who has scored at least 20 goals in each of his last nine season. He has the trade value and the attractiveness for any team to want to add him.

Pittsburgh Penguins
Pittsburgh Penguins /

Pittsburgh Penguins

But is trading him the right choice? Or should he stay in Pittsburgh, where he’s already won two Cups in just the two seasons he’s been here. He’s been a huge contributor to the team in that way after all.

Well let’s take a look at why trading him may be a good idea for the Penguins.

Cap Crunch

The Penguins are very tight on cap space right now. We lost many free agents and now have many holes in our lineup. Give it another year and the situation will only get worse if we don’t free up some cap space.

The immediate benefit of trading Phil Kessel is that we free up a lot of cap space. According to CapFriendly, we would save about $5.6 million per year because Toronto still retains $1.2 million of his $6.8 million dollar cap hit.

This is a lot of cap space that the Penguins can find handy, especially giving them some wiggle room to fill holes.

Trade Assets

The other benefit from trading Phil Kessel is that we may get a number of useful assets in return. If saving money is the main priority, we may acquire a number of draft picks or prospects in return. The Penguins are not in a rebuild mode however, and we may then flip these assets to fill the holes we have.

This technique is almost like a mini-rebuild with Phil Kessel, however we are simply flipping him to better suit our team in the long run. We may lose his star power, but we can still be a depthful team that can compete.