Penguins add Carolina forward Jokinen
Jussi Jokinen is a Penguin because of Sidney Crosby's broken jaw.
The Penguins acquired Jokinen, a versatile forward, on Wednesday because Crosby is out indefinitely, general manager Ray Shero said.
Also, Jokinen's former club, Carolina, agreed to paying part of his salary next season, the last on a contract that counts $3 million against the salary cap.
The Penguins will not be on the hook for all of that cap hit because, under the new labor agreement, clubs can retain salary and cap cost for a traded player.
“It made it more appealing for us,” Shero said, declining to identify how much Jokinen will cost the Penguins next season.
The Penguins swapped a conditional sixth- or seventh-round pick in the upcoming NHL Entry Draft for Jokinen.
Jokinen, 30, was third on the Hurricanes, trailing only centers Erik and Jordan Staal, with 283 faceoffs. He won 168 of those draws (59.4 percent).
Faceoff wins are not a Penguins strength without Crosby, who has claimed 54.3 percent of his draws.
Center Joe Vitale, who rarely plays on the penalty kill, leads the Penguins at 63 percent, but he has taken only 211 draws.
Jokinen is a candidate to fill the top-line center role until Crosby returns.
The Penguins had tried right winger Tyler Kennedy, but Shero said playing Kennedy out of position is “not something we'd love to keep doing.”
Upon Crosby's return, and pending the availability of the top three centers, Jokinen could work on a fourth line — just as wingers Pascal Dupuis and the combination of Petr Sykora and Miroslav Satan did for the Penguins during their 2009 playoff run to the Stanley Cup.
“It's always been my strength,” Jokinen said of his versatility. “At junior I played center every other year, and it's been that way since I got to the NHL. Offensive role, defensive role, it's something I've always be able to do.”
Jokinen did not play Wednesday night.
He is scheduled to join the Penguins in Pittsburgh on Thursday for practice.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
- Penguins acquire defensemen Lovejoy, Cole in deadline deals
- Penguins forwards struggle in loss to Avalanche
- Crosby, Malkin chase scoring title amid defense-minded league
- Penguins notebook: Crosby says he would play goal if needed
- Penguins need trade-deadline acquisitions to bring toughness
- Power play shines in Penguins’ home victory over Blue Jackets
- Penguins notebook: Pouliot dazzles in victory over Blue Jackets
- Trade for Winnik gives Penguins competition among bottom six
- Penguins notebook: Team exercising caution with Ehrhoff’s return from concussion
- Under Rutherford, it’s been a sizeable shakeup for Penguins
- Penguins GM Rutherford not counting on Dupuis’ return