Throughout the lineup, the Pittsburgh Penguins have a number of changes that need to be made.
One of the main spots the Penguins need to focus on is their defense which could see some change regardless of the status of Kris Letang.
No matter the situation, Pierre-Olivier Joseph needs to make his way into the NHL lineup, but room needs to be made for him.
That means cutting a player or two loose to the trade market and some of the nominees for a move are Marcus Pettersson and Brian Dumoulin.
According to Josh Yohe of the Athletic, the Penguins would prefer to move Pettersson.
It’s not that the team dislikes Pettersson as a person or player, there’s just some concerns with keeping him around.
Pettersson has a contract that is worth a hair over $4 million per year and lasts until 2025; a good chunk of change for a player with consistency issues and has been healthy scratched.
Despite being ranked as one of the better defensive defensemen in the league according to analytics, Pettersson struggled at times.
In 72 games during 2021-22, Pettersson recorded 19 points (2-17), but had a hard time staying consistent.
For a team that is usually against the cap ceiling like the Penguins are, even a little cap relief would be a benefit for the team.
Looking at the roster, the Penguins have a log jam of defensemen that can step in to fill the rolls, Joseph is one of them.
Joseph needs his time in the NHL and moving Pettersson could be the first step of that ascension.
Pettersson is young and capable of playing as solid second line defender, so he could be appealing for teams around the league.
Trading Pettersson, even just for the cap relief, can only be a positive move for the Penguins.
But this kind of move could also clear the path for the future of the Pens defense.
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