On Monday, the Pittsburgh Penguins acquired defenseman Trevor Daley from the Chicago Blackhawks in a move that saw defenseman, Rob Scuderi, go the other way.
However, the Penguins will retain 33% of Scuderi’s $3 million salary, according to general manager, Jim Rutherford. The Pittsburg Penguins had been keeping tabs on Daley for almost a month according to the general manager but struggled to find common ground with Chicago until late Monday night.
The 32-year-old has scored 231 points and 67 goals in 785 NHL games, 756 with the Dallas Stars. He had six assists to his name this year but failed to score in the last 29 games with the Blackhawks this season.
However, Rutherford is confident that Daley would prove to be a really great bargain for the franchise in the coming months.
“We like Trevor because he can skate,” Rutherford said. “He can move the puck, something that we’ve talked about in trying to improve that. Improve our back end where we’ve got more puck movers and he can certainly do that.”
Now that Mike Sullivan’s tenure as Pittsburgh has begun, Daley’s acquisition could prove to be a great one in Sullivan’s system where a lot of focus is laid on clean breakouts. And with defenseman Kris Letang still recovering from an upper-body injury, Daley’s versatility could prove very useful for Sullivan who is going to make all lineup decisions according to the team’s general manager.
Sullivan was given the coaching hot-set after the Penguins fired Mike Johnston on Saturday.
“With Letang out, [Sullivan] has to play around a little bit,” Rutherford said. “The nice thing about Trevor is he’s a left shot, but he likes to play on the right side. So, that’s going to help. He can play either side.”
During Sullivan’s first game in charge, the Penguins generated 45 shots but still went on to lost 4-1 to the Washington Capitals at the Consol Energy Center. However, Rutherford was satisfied with the efforts of the team and believes that Daley is a perfect fit for his franchise.
“Trevor’s been a good NHL player and he certainly can help our team, as I said, for a puck-moving point of view,” Rutherford said. “I was watching tonight’s game for many reasons. There are always a lot of emotions around when you make your move as we just did and sometimes it takes a little while. But I thought our team played hard and created a lot of scoring chances.”
However, this is the last trade made by the Penguins for the foreseeable future according to Rutherford who says that now the team looks pretty good.
“Not right now,” he said. “I’d like to give Mike a little time with this group, see how it settles in, then we’ll take a look at it. But one of the things with making the move with the coaching change was making it when we did, it gives us enough time to make other adjustments if necessary. I don’t think we need to. I think our team is pretty good, but we have to get a few breaks around the net and score some goals.”