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2010 FA Day 1: Third update

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Free-agent season has opened, so I wanted to pass along this quick update of who I’ve assessed are on the Penguins’ radar, based off numerous talks with folks around North America’s hockey community:

(Penguins have about $11 million in free space, according to their projections.)

— DEFENSMEN: Dan Hamhuis, Paul Martin, Kurtis Foster and Zbynek Michalek

— FORWARDS: Ray Whitney

— I’m putting Hamhuis on the list because he never played for the Penguins. I spoke with his agent before noon, and he said Hamhuis was headed to the market but would keep the Penguins in mind. Doesn’t sound promising, and there are a lot of signs that Hamhuis will be a big winner early in the free-agent season. Pens are willing to go four and five years on a contract.

— As for the Penguins’ UFAs:

*All have hit the market, so far as I know. RW Bill Guerin would like to return, but he would have to accept pay cut from a $2 million cap hit last season.

*D Sergei Gonchar is likely to receive several big offers, and possibly a very nice one from the Los Angeles Kings. Pens won’t offer more than two years.

*Ds Mark Eaton and Jordan Leopold are not out with the Penguins, but they are looking into options on the market.

— A couple of likable names on the mind of Penguins fans, but names that likely won’t be considered by management: Paul Kariya and Colby Armstrong.

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Author: Rob Rossi

Rob Rossi is the lead sports columnist for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. He has been called many names, but “Rossi” is the one to which he most often responds. He joined the Trib in November 2002 and was promoted to the columnist role in July 2014. Previously, he had covered the NHL’s Penguins (2006-14) and MLB’s Pirates (2006), while also working on beats associated with the NFL’s Steelers (2005-06) and the NCAA’s Pitt (2004-06). He has won national and local awards for his coverage of youth concussions and athletes’ charities. Also, he is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association executive committee and the Pittsburgh chapter chair. Raised in Crafton and Green Tree and a graduate of West Virginia University, he has covered a Super Bowl, All-Star Games in baseball and hockey, the NCAA basketball tournament and over 100 Stanley Cup playoff games, including the Cup Final twice. Oh, and his sports reporting has led him to brief chats with Mick Jagger and Bruce Springsteen; so that’s pretty cool. He is a regular contributor on TV with WPXI, Root Sports Pittsburgh and TSN. Also, he is the authorized biographer of Penguins star Evgeni Malkin.

 
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