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Penguins’ Guentzel Contract Talks Paused, Forward Seeks Clarity

Penguins’ star forward Jake Guentzel has paused contract talks, seeks clarity on the team’s future before long-term commitment.

As the Pittsburgh Penguins navigate the season, one of their key players is up for a contract extension. Forward Jake Guentzel, is approaching the end of his five-year, $30 million contract and he’ll be getting a hefty raise. At 29, Guentzel currently leads the team with 43 points, showcasing his value on the ice. However, negotiations for a new deal have yet to commence, creating a sense of uncertainty.

Reports from The Fourth Period’s David Pagnotta on “NHL Tonight” revealed that talks between the Penguins and Guentzel’s camp aren’t ongoing. The star forward is reportedly seeking clarity of the team’s future before committing to a long-term extension. With a significant raise anticipated over his current $6 million salary, Guentzel’s situation adds intrigue to the Penguins’ roster situation.

Jake Guentzel Pittsburgh Penguins trade talk

Unfortunately, Pagnotta notes that Guentzel’s agent has come out recently and given an indication that negotiations could take a turn. “As much as he loves it in Pittsburgh and has built chemistry, both on and off the ice, with Sidney Crosby, I can tell you right now no contract negotiations have taken place between the Penguins and Guentzel’s camp and agent Ben Hankinson,” Pagnotta said. “It’s kind of status quo at the moment.”

Related: Canucks Eyeing Jake Guentzel: Balancing Fit vs. Cost of a Rental

He adds that Guentzel is comfortable waiting this out. The forward wants to know the plan both short- and long-term in Pittsburgh. The Penguins have just over $18 million in salary cap space next season. Signing Guentzel could eat up around half of that. The Penguins may also want to wait too. Not sure where they’ll be as teams solidifying their spots in the playoffs, the Penguins want to be there, but an inconsistent season means there’s no guarantee. Penguins GM Kyle Dubas seems preparted to wait until the off-season before getting fully engaged in the negotiation process.

Will Both Sides Be Willing to Wait That Long on a New Guentzel Deal?

“Don’t be surprised if things get pushed to the off-season before things start to get significant between the Penguins and Guentzel’s camp,” Pagnotta added. “Now, that’s not to say the Penguins can’t turn around and present him with an offer that’s just too good to refuse, but as of today’s he’s going to wait things out and then see how this team not only performs this season, but then get a better understanding of what the direction is before he commits long-term.”

The issue here is that if Guentzel doesn’t like what’s going on in Pittsburgh, or the offer isn’t right, he could walk. The Penguins are at risk of the player bolting as an unrestricted free agent if they don’t sign or trade him before July 1.

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  1. Pingback: Penguins’ Guentzel Contract Talks Paused, Forward Seeks Clarity Its Playoff Hockey Fantasy Hockey News – Its Playoff Hockey

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