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The Daily: Penguins Still a Contender ?; Prospect Off to UMass

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Sidney Crosby, Penguins

The Pittsburgh Penguins are fully committed to trying to contend with veterans Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Kris Letang and Erik Karlsson.

Dan Kingerski wrote an interesting story about whether that’s even realistic.

Kingerski concedes contention is possible, but not likely. He offers a more realistic take about Penguins expectations moving forward It’s a good read. Click here for his full take.

“Florida retooled on the fly with a bevy of trades and bargain-free agents,” Kingerski writes. “The process took only a couple or few years. That’s the goal, and that’s the standard by which it makes sense to judge Dubas, but it doesn’t yet make sense to judge the Penguins, Crosby or even Dubas by the Stanley Cup standard any longer.”

Red Wings In Case You Missed It

Detroit prospect Larry Keenan is ready to join UMass to play collegiate hockey in 2024-25. He is the grandson of the former NHL player with the same name.

The Gordie Howe bridge connecting the United States to Canada is just the latest place to bear Mr. Hockey’s name.

Paywall story: Bob Duff ranks Detroit’s forward prospects, starting with Marco Kasper at No. 1. To subscribe, click here.  To receive $10 off a yearly subscription price, use the promo code bob10.

Red Wings Offseason

To appreciate the ground the Red Wings need to make up to qualify for the playoffs in 2024-25, consider that Detroit was fifth in the Atlantic Division last season in goal-differential. The Florida Panthers were first in the NHL with a plus-67 number. The Boston Bruins (plus-42), Toronto Maple Leafs (plus-37) and Tampa Bay Lightning (plus-21) all finished in the top 10. The Red Wings (plus-2) were 13th and the Buffalo Sabres (plus-1) were 14th. The Red Wings scored enough last season, but are below average in defensive numbers, goaltending statistics and physical play.

Hockey Now Network

Buffalo: Jason Moser turns back the clock to look at the best and worst Sabres trades of the 1970s. Buffalo Sabres.

Chicago: Nate Brown says Steven Stamkos could certainly help the Blackhawks and Connor Bedard take a big step in their development. But is he really going to leave Tampa Bay? Would he even consider signing with the Blackhawks? Those questions would suggest the chances are slim. Chicago Blackhawks.

Colorado: A change in Josh Manson’s no-trade status makes him easier trade. Evan Rawal looks at whether they would even consider such a valuable player.  Colorado Avalanche. 

Montreal:  Marco D’Amico writes the Habs may try to trade up at the 2024 NHL draft. Montreal Canadiens.

New Jersey: Former Devils forward could end up with the rival New York Rangers. New Jersey Devils.