Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Free Agency and Off-Season Injury Rundown

In a recent article posted on the PPG, they interviewed Penguins GM Ray Shero who shared some insight into what is in store for this off-season.

Both Brooks Orpik and Chris Kunitz were playing through injuries they suffered in the remaining months of the season and into the playoffs.  While its believed that Kunitz is most likely able to rehab his torn groin muscle without surgery, Orpik will likely face surgery for his abdominal area and his status for pre-season and the beginning of 2010-2011 is uncertain.

There doesn't appear to be any concerns with the coaching staff as far as Shero is concerned although with the number of players becoming UFA, it is highly likely that a few won't be returning to the Penguins organization.
"I'm very happy with our coaching staff," he said -- "but there could be some roster turnover with eight players eligible for unrestricted free agency if they are not re-signed by July 1."
Here's a summary of the future of a few of Pittsburgh's UFA according to Shero's interview by the PPG:
  • Sergei Gonchar - Shero's top priority
    • "He's one of the better defensemen in the league still," Shero said. "It's trying to find the right fit, cap-wise and with term. ... Once we get more into it, we'll find out if we can make a fit."
  • Matt Cooke - another of Shero's higher priorities
  • Ruslan Fedotenko - not likely to be resigned (seemingly this past season's "Sykora")
    • "I think [Fedotenko] will probably will look elsewhere," Shero said.
  • Jay McKee - not likely to be resigned
    • "Jay McKee probably wants to play a higher level, but we're still talking," Shero said.
  • Alexei Ponikarovsky - surprisingly Shero is considering the possibility of resigning him
    • "I don't think we've closed the door on [Ponikarovsky]," Shero said. "We have to see how things work out for us.  "Why it didn't work, we don't know, but whether it's with us or somebody else, he'll bounce back."
  • Bill Guerin - has made it clear that he wants to continue to play as a Penguin

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