Report: Pens 'more than happy' to keep Kessel if trade doesn't pan out
The Pens have let Kessel know that they're "more than happy" to keep him if a trade can't be worked out, The Athletic's Pierre LeBrun reports.
Kessel's name has been surfacing on the rumor mill since a reported rift between him and head coach Mike Sullivan made headlines last offseason. The Penguins tested the market for him before this year's trade deadline. He recently used his modified no-trade clause to nix a deal to the Minnesota Wild that would've sent Jason Zucker the other way.
The 31-year-old played an integral role in Pittsburgh's two Stanley Cup victories in 2016 and 2017. He followed up back-to-back stellar playoff performances with the most productive two-year stretch of his career, tallying 174 points in 164 games over the last two seasons.
Kessel has three years left on his contract at a $6.8-million cap hit.