June 23, 2024

Reports suggest Sidney Crosby is displeased with the Pittsburgh Penguins, particularly regarding the trade of his close friend Jake Guentzel. The disappointing season’s trajectory and the perception of conceding on the season with this trade have added to Crosby’s frustration. This dissatisfaction has raised concerns about Crosby’s happiness with the Penguins and its potential impact on his contract extension negotiations.

Head coach Mike Sullivan acknowledged that Sidney Crosby is facing a difficult situation following the deadline move. He mentioned that Crosby is aware of the team’s circumstances and remains committed to doing whatever he can to contribute to the team’s success. Sullivan emphasized Crosby’s deep care for the team and organization and highlighted the challenging and emotional nature of the recent weeks for everyone involved, particularly Crosby.

It is believed that Sidney Crosby has no immediate plans to depart from the Penguins, nor is he actively seeking a trade. However, there are concerns about his level of satisfaction with the team’s current situation. While the expectation was previously that Crosby would likely finish his career with the organization, this assumption is no longer considered certain. While he is not outright abandoning the team, there is speculation that Crosby may adjust his approach to contract extension negotiations to maintain flexibility and keep his options open.

If the Penguins are indeed transitioning towards a rebuild, Sidney Crosby may opt to position himself for optimal opportunities in the future, potentially including a move to a contender if the Penguins’ trajectory shifts. Elliotte Friedman highlights that while Crosby has earned the autonomy to make decisions in his best interest, considering recent contract extensions for Kris Letang and Evgeni Malkin, it seems unlikely that Crosby would depart without giving the front office an opportunity to reverse the team’s fortunes. Friedman speculates that the Penguins might offer Crosby a contract extension spanning two or three years at a salary around $10.5 million per year, with negotiations evolving from there.

At first glance, this doesn’t introduce any fresh insights beyond the existing speculation, suggesting that a short-term contract is more probable than a long-term one. However, there is curiosity regarding whether Sidney Crosby will include provisions in any new contract negotiations that allow for flexibility. While Crosby still has considerable playing years ahead of him, and his contract is likely to include clauses for trade protection, opting for a shorter-term agreement spanning three years or less could facilitate potential trades to contending teams.

Should Crosby commit to a longer extension, it might restrict the number of franchises willing to acquire him at a salary of $10.5 million. Conversely, a shorter-term contract would provide the option for salary retention in the future, enabling both the Penguins and Crosby to explore alternative arrangements if deemed beneficial for both parties.

Crosby Crossroads Could Change Extension Plans With Penguins

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