Let’s be real here. I bet a lot of us have actually forgotten who the Pens acquired over the off season. There were some massive trades, and some not so big signings, but the team we saw last season is not the team we will see this year. What’s changed? Let’s check it out!
Johnson was injured for a lot of last season, resulting in overplaying Marc-Andre Fleury a lot. While Fleury was great during the regular season, he was, for a lack of a better word, abysmal during the post season. A lot of people blamed it on the fact that Fleury was over worked during the regular season, so Shero moved quickly and signed goalie Tomas Vokoun, making Johnson a free agent.
After their elimination from the playoffs, the one question everyone had was what would the Penguins do with Jordan Staal? Shero said he had no plans to trade the third line center, and even offered him a 10 year, $60 million contract. However, Staal declined it. The next day at the NHL Draft that took place in Pittsburgh, it was announced that Staal had been traded to the Carolina Hurricanes for their 8th overall pick, forward Brandon Sutter, and defenceman Brian Dumoulin.
Everyone was still buzzing about the Staal trade when, after the first day of the draft, the Penguins made some more moves. They sent defenceman Zbynek Michalek back to the Phoenix Coyotes for defenceman prospect Harrison Ruopp, goalie Marc Cheverie, and their 2012 third round pick.
While the Pens seemed to focus all their energy into trying to acquire Zach Parise, a couple of players left before contract talks could begin. Steve Sullivan was one of them. He signed with the Phoenix Coyotes.
Arron Asham also left us for the New York Rangers. By becoming a Ranger, Asham has now played for every team in the Atlantic division.
Ray Shero traded our 7th round pick in the 2012 draft for the goalie and quickly signed him to a 2 year, $4 million contract. Vokoun will obviously act as a backup goalie for Marc Andre Fleury.
When the Pens traded away Jordan Staal, they received Brandon Sutter in return. Sutter will be able to slip into the third line center role perfectly and will definitely be used on the penalty kill, both roles left vacant when Staal left.
When the free agency opened up on July 1st, Tanner Glass was signed to a 2 year, $1.1 million contract. The former Winnipeg Jet was offered the same amount and years by the Jets, but chose to sign with the Pens instead. He’s also well acquainted with current Penguin Ben Lovejoy. The two of them played at Dartmouth College together.
We also signed Benn Ferreiro and Phillipe Dupuis. Both are currently playing in the AHL.