Rumour Report: Malkin trade rumours swirl once again

This could be the year the Pittsburgh Penguins move on from franchise forward Evgeni Malkin.

Stop me if you've heard this before: the Penguins may consider trading Evgeni Malkin in the offseason. After getting blasted out of the playoffs in four straight against the upstart Islanders, it appears the Pens may be finally ready to deal away one of their franchise cornerstones.

Rumblings out of Pittsburgh were given credence when GM Jim Rutherford refused to say whether Malkin would be back with the team next season.

Some in Pittsburgh believe there is some fire to that smoke, with suggestions that a rift has grown between Geno and head coach Mike Sullivan.

Malkin rumours have tended to swirl every year the Penguins go out early in the playoffs, but it feels a little different this time around. We have two rumoured landing spots: the Rangers and Panthers, who both seem determined to pry themselves out of the Eastern Conference basement in a hurry. The Panthers have also been linked to pending UFA forward Artemi Panarin, so it's interesting they're also looking at Malkin.

Reports seem to suggest that Malkin is at least contemplating a change of scenery himself. With a no-move clause until 2022, this decision is in his own hands. Stay tuned.

Most of the NHL is now in full offseason mode, and the rumour mill is cranking up once again. Follow NHL Rumour Report on Facebook and Twitter for the latest rumour updates!

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