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Penguins begin contract talks with Dupuis, Rupp

The Penguins have opened contract talks with at least two of their impending unrestricted free agents.

Agent Allan Walsh confirmed Monday night that he has started negotiations with Penguins general manager Ray Shero. Walsh represents forwards Pascal Dupuis and Mike Rupp.

Both players can hit the open market July 1.

Rupp and Dupuis have each proven versatile during their respective tenures.

Rupp, in two seasons, has established himself as a physical presence with surprising scoring touch. He has played at center and wing, and scored 22 goals in 162 games.

Dupuis, the last remaining player from 2008 trade deadline deals that sparked the Penguins to Cup Final runs in consecutive seasons, has played at wing throughout the lineup. He is also a trusted penalty killer.

Dupuis, 32, has scored 49 goals in 249 games, with 35 coming over the last two seasons. His salary-cap hit was $1.4 million.

Rupp, 31, counted $825,000 against the salary cap.

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