Lots of Minor League TransactionsPosted: 25/01/2013
Actually a ton of moves going down at the AHL level: the Pens traded Benn Ferriero, a career AHLer who signed in Pittsburgh after several highly productive years in San Jose’s system, to the New York Rangers for Chad Kolarik, a perennial 20 goal scorer at the AHL level. He was brought in to be a depth scoring option but so far has only posted 4 goals in Wilkes Barre so far. Kolarik has topped 20 goals three times at the AHL level. Don’t quite understand how this trade would work for the Rangers but it sounds like a win for the Pens and that’s all that really matters. The Pens also traded Carl Sneep to Dallas for a 7th round draft pick. Given that the Pens parlayed a 7th round pick into Tomas Vokoun last year I see this as a good trade too. Whereas the trades were situations where the Penguins were able to move expendable pieces for other assets, the Pens also made the move to sign some players in order to possibly free up other resources. The Penguins came to terms with two former players, Mark Eaton and Tom Kostopolous. Eaton was an underrated element of the Penguin’s 2009 Cup win. He was signed to a 25 game AHL-level contract.
Signing Eaton frees up the Pens to move the NHL level depth guys, Lovejoy, Bortuzzo, or possibly even Simon Despres. In fact, as I will write later, I would be enthralled with an Engelland – Eaton third pairing especially if it means that Engelland will play more.
Kostopolous is 34 years old and has been a career 4th liner. He also signed to an AHL contract and could provide a good option if the Pens end up moving Dustin Jeffrey or Eric Tangradi or another piece that fills out the 4th line. As such it seems likely that the Pens already do have some aspirations for what kind of move they’re looking for when the moment arises. Get more info on all of the minor league moves here.