Unusual, Pittsburgh Penguins president of hockey operations Brian Burke has decided to publicly comment on contract negotiations with center Evgeni Malkin.
“We weren't able to get along,” the 67-year-old told the Tribune-Review newspaper on Tuesday. We made him an offer that we were comfortable with. There are stories that have come out claiming that we didn't offer him a four-year pact. It is completely false. As for the details and the amount, we never talk about this kind of thing.
The day before, the TSN network learned that the 35-year-old Russian was going to test the free agent market. Malkin has just completed an eight-year deal, worth $9.5 million annually.
Although the forward will benefit from his full autonomy, Burke has not closed the door on a return to Pittsburgh.
“The window is still open, but the timing is problematic, he said. said. Once the market opens, we have to do our best to improve our club. Everything will depend on the “timing”.
“Nobody here says: 'we don't want Evgeni to come back' or 'this is horrible, what is he thinking?' There is none of that. It's more a question of windows of opportunity.”
Malkin, a holder of three Stanley Cup rings, has spent his entire National League career with the Pens. He was also the first round choice (second overall) of this organization in the 2004 draft.
In career, he amassed 1146 points in 981 games and notably won two Art- Ross, given to the best scorer on the Bettman circuit. Malkin had 20 goals and 22 assists for 42 points in 41 games in 2021-22.