Deadline means defense for Penguins on trade market

As the clock ticks steadily toward Monday’s NHL trade deadline, general manager Jim Rutherford makes no bones about what’s at the top of his shopping list.

He wants a defenseman.

With Ben Lovejoy out long term with an upper-body injury, the Penguins are down to six players with meaningful NHL experience on the blue line. That almost certainly will change before the deadline.

The only question, really, is where the new defenseman will fit on the depth chart.

“With the prices of top-four guys, which there are very few available, it’s not necessarily going to be a top-four guy,” Rutherford said. “It may be a guy that’s a depth guy. It may be a guy that can play in our top six. But we would like to add a defenseman prior to the deadline.”

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