Report: Penguins Asking About Kris Russell

The Calgary Flames are without their captain and alternate captain. Now teams are apparently calling about their remaining letter-wearing player.

With Mark Giordano out on the injured reserve and Curtis Glencross traded to Washington, reports are that the Pittsburgh Penguins have called about defenseman Kris Russell. Roger Millions of Sportsnet reported this morning that the Penguins had asked about blueliners.

Penguins beat writer Jason Mackey narrowed it down.

I’d rank this as a very low-chance move. Russell is popular in the room, wears a letter and is a favourite of Flames coach Bob Hartley – plus he’s the team’s third-best defenseman, and fourth place (Dennis Wideman) isn’t close. The team would need to garner a proverbial king’s ransom in order to justify sending him away.

  • Frank Miron

    Trading Russell sounds like a terrible idea, but on deadline day when GMs lose their minds you have to at least listen. You should be ready in case a desperate team makes an outlandish offer.

    • everton fc

      Russell should not be moved. We have a chance to reach the playoffs, and we are thin in defencemen as it is.

      We should see what the Habs would be willing to take for Emelin. A 3rd?? Or Eller. A 3rd?? We are in a position of strength.

  • Shut the front door.

    Getting rid of Russell for a pick and, even, an “A” prospect is like saying “we give up”. Who would the Flames put in the second pairing? Shlemko?

    The playoff cause may well be lost this year, though I don’t think so and I don’t think the team thinks so. But to trade your good 2nd pairing defencman is to admit the playoffs are out of reach, while they are still in a playoff position, and that would be contrary to everything the team has stood for this season and contrary to the character they were building with all those third period comebacks.

    The only D-man that the Flames should be considering selling, at this point (and he has a NTC, IIRC) is Wideman because at least Diaz can pick up some of that slack. Maybe.

    Sell Russell? Now? Madness. Let’s speak of this no more.

    • Russell is not only our 3rd best dman but he is on a kickass contract as well. Pitt doesn’t have a 2015 1st ala Perron deal. So Poulliot has to come back & why would we do this. LA have lost 3 in a row & San Jose are embracing/contemplating a blowup. They are awful & haven’t done a deal yet.

      I am not an advocate of this but if we want another 1st, Detroit are feeling like they are not invited to a family dinner without a date & may only have a putrid Dion contract to bring. Eat 2.0 mill of Wideman’s contract & get their 1st, 2nd or 3rd & a decent contract. I bet they do that after Rangers got Yandle & Canadians got Petry. After what Coburn got, this is probably not out of line. Russell is our future, him Gio & Brody represents 1/2 our future core blue line. Lots of time to find the 4-5-6 pieces in the next 1-2 years. Kinda ticks me off but I know & admire BT for staying the course on this rebuild. But if we aren’t going to help this years playoff cause, Wideman’s value is never going to be higher especially if we eat 2.0mill of his salary.

      • piscera.infada

        Agreed. If you’re trading a defenseman this year, it’s Wideman. You could sell that offensive production at a premium.

        That said, I doubt they do anything with defensemen, unless there’s one coming back, which would likely restrict the return in terms of futures.

  • Frank Miron

    He’s a 2nd pairing D. I love him, but a mid range first in this year’s draft would be worth it, but it’s gotta be top 20. I have a hard time seeing that happen though.

      • piscera.infada

        @ PI and Everton FC – I agree that this summer is when you want to start thinking about doing a deal for Wides.

        Besides, I think it is probably too late to start from scratch to do a deal for a player with a NTC. Probably.

    • Frank Miron

      & that’s the whole point of this conundrum. I was really really hoping we could have used some of our redundant prospects & one of the Wash picks we got for a decent 2nd pairing dman to push for the playoffs without undermining the rebuild. But geez man, if we aren’t going to buy anything for a push to make 3rd in our division, these blue liners are getting King Ransoms, except for Mr bold moves MacT & Petry. Hell I would have flipped the Wash 2nd & Reinhart or Agostino for Petry. I think that is why I am feeling kinda blue today, I deep down wanted BT to do something to try & do it. I do disagree about Wideman’s value being the same or higher at the Draft. I think the 1st rounders have more psychological value then than they do now. If we are still in rebuild thinking, the smart GM’s will sell when prices are whacko. We get a 1st, 2nd & a decent prospect out of Detroit, wow, one last major shopping trip to stock the cupboards & then I don’t want to be sellers for awhile.

  • KiLLKiND

    Pittsburgh already traded away their 1st to Edmonton nothing they have to offer is worth it. Even a 1st would be questionable as top 4 D are in shortage in Calgary and whatever they trade us we would need to spend to get a D not quite as good, young, or cheap as him. This trade isn’t happening as Calgary would need to without a doubt win the trade and Pittsburgh’s GM can’t offer anything to guarantee that.

  • Parallex

    It doesn’t make much sense to trade Russell. The Flames need more organizational depth at D, not less.

    I mean let’s say they were to trade him… any prospects or picks we’d get back I’d want to be D prospects or spend the pick drafting D and I’d be satisfied if any of them turned into a player of Russell’s quality. So what’s the point? I’d get it if there were pressures (cap/age/contract status) and you simply wanted to time shift productivity into the future but Russell has term on his contract/is relatively young/is relatively cheap. So yeah… no reason to move him.

  • RKD

    No surprise, when Russell came to Calgary from St. Louis the expectations on him were low. The guy has exceeded expecations, he’s been a stud and provided a solid pairing with Wideman. The Pens probably don’t trust their d or goaltending despite how many shutouts Fleury has. I would not trade him. What would the Pens give up? Are you going to give up Bennett or Pouliot for Russell? Depends on how desperate the Pens are to win now. Update: Dennis Wideman is on a cell phone after Bob Hartley left the ice.

  • Parallex

    So, apparently BT not interested in trading any roster players at this point.. just taking on a big contract.

    We could see Phaneuf, Richards, Semin, or maybe even Mike Smith coming to Calgary with a first round pick?