Report: Blackhawks are ‘seriously kicking tires on Evgeni Malkin’

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A few weeks ago, Sportsnet’s Nick Kypreos predicted the Stanley Cup Final would be the last series for Evgeni Malkin in a Pittsburgh Penguins uniform.

The prediction got a fair bit of attention at the time, but then everyone’s focus turned to the games. Malkin had a frustrating start against the Sharks, failing to register a point in the first three contests, but he came up big in Game 4 and Pittsburgh went on to win in six.

In the end, it was the Penguins’ ability to deploy Sidney Crosby on one line, Malkin on another, and Phil Kessel on still another that gave their opponents so much trouble. Malkin finished with six goals and 12 assists in 23 playoff games. He didn’t win the Conn Smythe like he did in 2009, but he was a major contributor all the same.

Hence, the disbelief after Newsday’s Steve Zipay tweeted the following today:

So according to what Zipay was hearing, not only might the Penguins trade their Russian superstar with the $9.5 million cap hit, they might trade him to one of the most cap-strapped teams in the NHL?

It all seemed a tad far-fetched.

Enter the Chicago Tribune’s Chris Hine to calm things down, sort of:

So for now, we’ll leave it at that. Just one of the many crazy possibilities that could happen, but probably won’t. (Unless it does!)

Malkin, 29, is signed through 2021-22. He also has a no-movement clause, according to generalfanager.com.