Kris Letang, Penguins near deal on 8-year contract: report

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The Pittsburgh Penguins are reportedly close to locking up Norris Trophy-nominated defenceman Kris Letang with a new eight-year contract supposedly worth $58 million (US).

Renaud Lavoie of RDS reported that the deal would also include a limited, 15-team no trade clause.

Letang and the Penguins had been working on a new deal following the team's elimination from the Stanley Cup playoffs, but talks apparently hit a snag around both the terms of a new deal as well as a perceived slight on the part of Letang over comments in an article written in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

The article stated that Pittsburgh management and coaches believed that Letang wasn't the consensus best defenceman on the team, and he had become a "must-move player."

Late Sunday evening, Penguins general manager Ray Shero said progress has been made on a contract extension for Letang, but there is still some work left to do.

“It’s simpler enough to say we’re just not done yet,” Shero told the Penguins official website during the NHL draft in Newark, N.J. “Still working on it with his agent. We haven’t had time to get together today with the draft. I’ll talk to him a little later (Monday) and try to work through a couple of things and get back at it.”

The Montreal native's current contract pays him $3.5 million annually and that four-year pact expires at the end of next season.

The 26-year-old had been rumoured to be looking for a new contract worth north of $7 million per year, with the reported deal working out to an average value of $7.25 million.

Rob Rossi of the Tribune-Review also reported that the Penguins are considering two options for the extension— one at the maximum-term of eight years and another at four years.

The most offensive-minded of Pittsburgh's blue-liners, Letang had five goals and 38 points in 35 regular season games in 2013.

He chipped in with three goals and 16 points in the Penguins' 2013 playoff run, where the team was swept in the Eastern Conference final by the Boston Bruins.

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