The Pittsburgh Penguins are loaded with young talent is going to need a pay day within the next two seasons. The trade-off for that dilemma is making two straight Stanley Cup Finals.
However, the dilemma creates a situation where they will need to sell someone or lose them for nothing within the next two years.
Nick Bonino, Chris Kunitz, and Trevor Daley are unrestricted free agents this offseason. Brian Dumoulin, Justin Schultz, and Conor Sheary are restricted free agents.
They have just $12.9 million in projected cap space to fix that situation, yikes.
Bryan Rust, Tom Kuhnhackl, and Scott Wilson are restricted free agents next offseason. Patric Hornqvist and Ian Cole are unrestricted free agents.
Now let’s just say they make it work this offseason with the $12.9 million available to them. Next summer’s projected cap space is just $8.8 million to sign the five guys they have. Even by letting some of them go they will have issues.
That’s where the Rangers come in. They are in dire need of a young defenseman. The Penguins have a couple, and Brian Dumoulin is their guy.
Dumoulin is a ripe 25 years old, plays a solid possession game with over 50% corsi, and has had a positive rating through the past two seasons. He won’t cost them an arm and a leg and the Rangers have plenty of cap space to work with.
This trade makes sense on both ends. It will hurt Pittsburgh to have to play Dumoulin over the years, but the trade could make them better by giving them more room to sign guys like Schultz and Sheary.