When the rumors broke in the recent days that Pittsburgh Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford was thinking of moving star defenseman Kris Letang before the trade deadline, fans probably thought:
Is he mad?!
However, NHL insider Elliotte Friedman has broken down the situation, and it makes quite a bit of sense. In his latest 31 thoughts on Sportsnet, Friedman explains that Rutherford is now fearless and this move could be a well-calculated one for his team.
"The theory is that the Penguins need to free up cap space, and they did win without him last season. The other thing to remember is that GM Jim Rutherford is fearless, unafraid to make an informed gamble."
Now, there is a curve ball. Letang missed last night's game with a lower-body injury, and his history of ailments and concussions - and even stroke! - might scare off some interested parties.
The question now is: will this recent injury put a stop to a potential in-season deal?
"He’s good, and everyone knows it. What makes this tricky is his health history — which includes a stroke and concussions, among other injuries. Letang’s seen several doctors/specialists outside the Penguins’ prism, so you’d have to assume any interested opponent would want access to that information."
To be continued...