2014 Free Agent Frenzy Live Blog

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Will the Penguins bring back Peter Mannino on an AHL contract again this season?
About a half hour before the free agent market opens and we have already had a big trade as the Ottawa Senators sent forward Jason Spezza to the Dallas Stars for a trio of prospects and a a second round pick in 2015. The Stars also received Ludvig Karlsson from the Sens in that deal.

Stay tuned here all day for the latest news on Penguins free agent signings as well as where the Penguins 2014 free agents end up. Follow along on Twitter (@H_P_Hockey) for breaking news and check back here throughout the day for my take on any relevant Penguins news (both NHL and AHL).

While you're waiting for the Pens first move of the day, take a look at my story from yesterday on three pressing needs for the AHL Penguins that they should look to fill in free agency.

More to come..

UPDATE: Penguins re-sign forward Marcel Goc to a one-year deal, also sign defenseman Taylor Chorney to a one-year, two-way deal.

I said in my three needs story yesterday for the AHL Penguins that they needed a veteran AHL goaltender, a veteran presence on the blue line and a top-six scoring forward. They signed goalie Thomas Greiss and re-signed forward Nick Drazenovic earlier today, but adding Taylor Chorney fulfills the third need I mentioned above.

Chorney, 27, was the captain of the AHL's Chicago Wolves last season. The 6-foot, 196 pound defenseman tallied 25 points (5G-20A) in 69 games last season. Chorney, a 6-year pro, also brings 61 games of NHL experience to the AHL Penguins blue line.

The Penguins brought back forward Marcel Goc on a one-year deal worth $1.2 million, a $500,000 decrease in his salary from last season. Goc looks to add forward depth to the Pens bottom six as a potential fourth line center.


UPDATE: Penguins re-sign forward Nick Drazenovic to one-year, two-way contract.

I said yesterday the Penguins needed an AHL top-six forward. They got theirs in Drazenovic. Drazenovic tallied 13 goals and 29 assists in 63 regular season games last year while adding four points (1G-3A) in nine AHL playoff games.

UPDATE: Penguins sign goaltender Thomas Greiss (1 year - $1 million) and forward Blake Comeau (1 year - $700,000)

In a bit of a surprise, the Penguins add a third goaltender to a one-way deal inking Greiss to a one-year deal. Greiss appeared in 25 games with the Coyotes last season, going 10-8-5 with a 2.29 goals-against average and a .920 save percentage.

What's interesting is what the Penguins will do with three goaltenders. They could place Jeff Zatkoff (one-way contract worth $600,000) on waivers and re-assign him to the AHL Penguins, but would have to pay him the full $600,000 in the AHL. Could Zatkoff be on the move?

The Penguins also bolstered their forward depth in the NHL with a low-priced one-year deal to former Columbus Blue Jackets forward Blake Comeau. Comeau tallied 16 points (5G-11A) in 61 games to go along with 36 penalty minutes and a minus two rating.
  
UPDATE: Penguins sign defenseman Christian Ehrhoff to a one-year deal worth $4 million.

Ehrhoff was bought out by Buffalo, but the Penguins bring him in on a one-year deal shortly after the free agent market opened. Ehrhoff tallied 33 points (6G-27A) in 79 games with the Sabres last season.

What this means for the AHL Penguins? Currently signed for NHL Pens on the blue line:
Kris Letang, Paul Martin, Christian Ehrhoff, Robert Scuderi, Olli Maatta and Robert Bortuzzo. Philip Samuelsson and Simon Despres are qualified restricted free agents.
Could the Penguins move one of their defenseman (Martin, Scuderi)? If not, it's a good move for AHL Penguins that likely keeps a guy like Brian Dumoulin in the AHL.

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