Penguins GM Opens Up About Direction of the Team

The Pittsburgh Penguins haven't met expectations this season and are set for unfamiliar territory, as they've entered the NHL Draft Lottery conversation. President/GM Kyle Dubas was aggressive from day one on the job, trading for Erik Karlsson early on during his tenure, and unfortunately, it's not just the Karlsson trade that has him in hot water with members of the organization. This includes Sidney Crosby who was not a fan of the Jake Guentzel trade.

Dubas recently caught up with The Athletic's Pierre LeBrun and had this to say about what's going on these days in Pittsburgh and what to expect heading into next season:

I think everyone's been pretty clear on where they stand on the fact everyone would like to see him end his career in Pittsburgh. And it's my intention that in those years that we're back and definitely contending. t's tough when you have to make those decisions. But you have to always do what you believe is best for the long term of the organization and my sights were set on giving the team as long as possible to assert itself more in the race. I would never expect for us to move a key player from our team and have any of those guys, including (head coach Mike Sullivan), Sid, Kris Letang, (Evgeni) Malkin, Erik Karlsson, Bryan Rust, to think that that's a good thing. I think you'd be remiss not to seek his (Crosby) opinion and how he's feeling. Obviously he's done so much for the city of Pittsburgh and for the Penguins ... I want his opinion, I value his opinion. We may not always agree and I might have to do things in the short run he disagrees with

Dubas, Crosby and his agent are expected to meet over the summer and discuss a contract extension. It will certainly be very interesting to see if the Penguins captain has second thoughts about staying to finish his career in Pittsburgh. There was some rumours floating around that if Crosby does ask for a trade, the Boston Bruins or Colorado Avalanche would be the preferred destinations. To this point it hasn't gotten that far, not even close, so keep an eye on what comes out of the meeting this summer as it's certainly some fragile times in Pittsburgh these days.

Photo credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports