New Report Reveals Penguins Nearly Traded Another Star Forward This Season

Graham Montgomery
March 14, 2024  (11:38)

Pittsburgh Penguins forward Reilly Smith skating with the team during training camp
Photo credit: Dk Pittsburgh Sports

The Pittsburgh Penguins had an interesting trade deadline. It ultimately passed with the team making just one major move as they traded Jake Guentzel, but other trades were on the table according to new reports.

Kings Had Interest In Trade For Penguins Veteran

One player that many expected to be traded was Penguins winger Reilly Smith. With the team clearly missing the playoffs this season, Smith was seen as one of the team's most tradable assets, along with Jake Guentzel. Many around the hockey world were surprised to see he ultimately was not moved.
The Pittsburgh Penguins decision to keep Reilly Smith was bizarre 🤨
NHL insider Elliotte Friedman shed some light on this situation today. He reported that Smith was one of the top targets for the LA Kings, but the team simply ran out of cap space to make moves.
"There was a lot of competition for Toffoli. There were a lot of rumours about LA LA was also interested in Reilly Smith; they just didn't have any room to do anything."

However, this does not mean that Smith won't be traded by the Penguins. General manager Kyle Dubas hinted today that many players could be one the move over the coming years.

Dubas Hints At Possible Rebuild For Pittsburgh Penguins

The Penguins have been truly blessed with the Crosby-Malkin era of hockey. The duo brought the organization multiple Stanley Cup championships and ushered in a new era of winning Penguins hockey. Unfortunately though, all things must pass, and now it sounds like the time for this core in Pittsburgh May be over. Kyle Dubas hinted that the team could be going in a rebuilding direction during his media availability today.
Kyle Dubas: "In my role, there's going to be a lot of times where you have to do things that people will question; that people will think are unpopular... But the goal, the job, has to be all the time about winning in the long run."
With Crosby on an expiring contract this year, that could mean the beloved franchise icon will suit up for a different NHL club for the first time in his career, if not next season, than soo after. This also means that the team will very likely look to move Smith next season as he is also on an expiring deal. What does that mean Penguins hockey will look like in the near future? Only time will tell, but it seems as though the team could be heading for dark days.