Note: We're keeping the Penguins related moves tacked up at the top of the blog for the day. Check below for other moves around the league.
According to TSN's Bob McKenzie, the Penguins have signed former Coyotes defenseman Zbynek Michalek. The deal is for five years and $20 million. It will have an annual salary cap hit of $4 million.
In 72 games, Michalek scored 17 points and recorded a plus-5. A defensive type, Michalek was 15th in the NHL last season with 156 blocked shots.
At 6-foot-2, 210 pounds, Michalek will be entering his seventh season in the NHL. He is the older brother of Senators forward Milan Michalek.
Last season, Michalek, a native of the Czech Republic, averaged 20:27 of ice time. 16:14 of that was even strength. 4:08 of that was shorthanded.
EN Says: We love this signing. Everyone talked about Senators defenseman Anton Volchenkov being the top defensive defenseman on the market. And that probably is true, but Michalek is in his league in terms of being a shot blocker.
And Michalek offers a little bit more mobility and offensive game. He won't make anyone forget Sergei Gonchar, but Michalek is capable of providing 30 points a season.
Additionally, Michalek, 27, doesn't nearly have the wear and tear Volchenkov does. He's been spared a lot of playoff hockey during his time in Phoenix
The area of Michalek's game which could use some improvement is physcial play. For a defensive type, he not all that nasty around his own net.
It took a year, but the Penguisn have finally found their replacement for Rob Scuderi. Michalek will be (or should be) what Jay McKee was intended to be: A shutdown, shot-blocking defenseman.
(Photo: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)