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Penguins Extend Qualifying Offers to Kasperi Kapanen, Kasper Bjorkqvist, P.O. Joseph

As NHL free agency nears, the Pittsburgh Penguins send qualifying offers to multiple players
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The Pittsburgh Penguins have extended qualifying offers to three players as the NHL free agency nears.

Kasperi Kapanen, Kasper Bjorkqvist, and P.O. Joseph were all extended offers by the Penguins and will not become unrestricted free agents (UFA).

Danton Heinen, and multiple minor league players were not given offers and will become UFAs upon the opening of free agency.

This move comes in the contrary of what most fans and insiders would have expected between Kapanen and Heinen.

Between Kapanen and Heinen, the latter had the much better season in 2021-22, putting up 33 points (18-15) in 76 games.

Kapanen struggled all year to find the net and hold on to constancy, landing him at 11 goals and 21 assists for 32 points in 79 games.

The expectations were high for Kapanen, but he failed to meet even the minimal requirement of what people wanted to see.

The offers given to Kapanen, Bjorkvist, and Joseph do not mean they are already re-signed with the Penguins.

These offers are made so the Penguins retain negotiating rights to the players; the only way a team can attempt to sign one of these three is through an offer sheet.

Bjorkqvist has already signed to play in Finland for the 2022-23 season and will not be coming back across the pond this year.

Extending Bjorkqvist an offer means the Penguins will be able to negotiate a deal before any other team if he decides to come back to North America.

As for Joseph, this offer should turn into a full deal to play in the NHL; he’s the top rated defensive prospect in the Penguins system and the team needs to make some changes on the blue line.

Giving Joseph to a regular role in the NHL should be one of them.

This also doesn’t mean all hope is lost for Heinen and other free agents, the Penguins can still negotiate new deals with them, they will just have to outbid 31 other teams.

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