Some notes on D Sergei Gonchar’s deal with Ottawa Senators:
— The Penguins never offered a three-year deal, and I’m told they didn’t offer a raise on his previous $5 million annual salary.
— Team management awoke today expecting to lose Gonchar. Hopeful he’d return, but not at all optimistic.
— No-trade clause wasn’t on the table, either.
— Penguins are talking with reps for several Ds, and one who could help replace Gonchar is Kurtis Foster (Tampa Bay). Also in mix are Paul Martin and Zbynek Michalek, whose name I might mangle throughout the day on quick-hitting blog posts. Due apologies in advance.
— Pens don’t believe they are out of the hunt for Dan Hamhuis, and not by a long shot.
— Said one Pens player via text after Gonchar’s loss: “We better get Hamhuis.”
— Said a former teammate of Gonchar’s in Pittsburgh: “He was more a part of our turnaround than anybody outside the organization realized.”