Evgeni Malkin has been the target of trade rumors for years now, but after they perked up again following a disappointing 2018-19 season he’s hoping to put them behind him. In an incredible piece that delves into Malkin’s home life and the relationship he has had with teammates (including a spotlight on Phil Kessel) and coaches, Rob Rossi of The Athletic (subscription required) also got an idea of what the big Pittsburgh Penguins forward hopes his future holds:
It’s (a) huge next three years. I still want to play 100 percent — and sign (for) three more years with Pittsburgh.
Malkin’s current contract is set to expire in the summer of 2022, when he will be 35 (turning 36). That would mean another contract would be of the 35+ variety, adding some risk for the Penguins should Malkin decide to retire at any point during it. While that’s a long way away, you can bet GM Jim Rutherford has already contemplated his actions down the road in regards to the franchise icon.
- With a Justin Faulk trade still being discussed between the Anaheim Ducks and Carolina Hurricanes, Sara Civian of The Athletic confirms previous reports that Ondrej Kase would be involved. That news has surprised some other teams around the league according to Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet, who reports that Kase was unavailable in trade talks for a long time and suggests his new availability may be linked to health concerns. Kase has never played a full 82-game season in the NHL and actually has just 149 games to his name at this point in his career. Still, the 23-year old forward has shown an ability to score goals at a strong rate and could be a nice addition for the Hurricanes.
- Kevin Fiala remains unsigned, but Minnesota Wild GM Bill Guerin hopes his talented young forward is in town for training camp when it starts in a few days. Guerin told The Athletic (subscription required) that the team has made a “fair offer” to Fiala and that the 23-year old is now deciding. Fiala came to the Wild from the Nashville Predators last season and put up seven points in 19 games down the stretch, but has shown flashes of top-line offensive potential in the past and could be a huge part of the turnaround in Minnesota.