Kris Letang would have had a hard time getting much done had the Pittsburgh Penguins advanced to the Eastern Conference Final and that’s assuming he would have played at all.
Letang broke his foot in Game 6 of Pittsburgh’s second round series against the New York Rangers and suffered a broken hand in Game 7, per TVA Sports’ Renaud Lavoie. He will not be able to workout for the next four weeks.
That concludes a rough campaign for Letang, who missed a significant chunk of the season after sustaining a stroke. Fortunately he was able to come back from that, even if he struggled to get back to his former level, but that wasn’t the only problem he dealt with in 2013-14.
Letang suffered two significant injuries during the regular season before he suffered a stroke and only played in 37 games as a result. Over the last three campaigns, Letang has played in just 123 of a possible 212 games because of a variety health issues, including two concussions.
The Penguins have indicated that they’re ready to make meaningful changes by firing former GM Ray Shero. Perhaps they’ll follow it up by moving Letang, who is about to start his eight-year, $58 million contract.
Avoiding that $7.25 million annual cap hit would be big for the Penguins, who already have a big chunk of their payroll consumed by Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin. At the same time, that contract combined with his injury history might cause teams to shy away from Letang, despite his abilities.