Penguins update: Team loses Hossa, Ruutu

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The Penguins have lost free-agent right winger Marian Hossa to Detroit.

The big surprise: His contract is for one season and $7.4 million.

The Penguins were offering a bit more than $7 million on a deal that, at various times, was proposed to cover five, six or seven years.

Several other clubs reportedly made proposals for even more money and years, which suggests that financial security was not Hossa's main motivation in choosing Detroit.

Hossa could not be reached for comment, but is scheduled to speak with reporters in Detroit this afternoon.

Hossa's departure wasn't their only loss: Left winger Jarkko Ruutu turned down a two-year offer from the Penguins and signed with Ottawa, reportedly for three years at an average salary of $1.3 million.

There still is no word on whether defenseman Brooks Orpik, the most prominent of the Penguins' remaining free agents, will return.

Hossa's departure leaves a void on the right side of the Penguins' No. 1 line, and management has begun looking into ways to fill it.

Ex-Penguin Markus Naslund, who has spent most of his career in Vancouver, is believed to be getting serious consideration, although it's likely the front office will use the money that would have gone to Hossa to sign two wingers, not just one.

Team officials made cursory contact with free-agent right winger Jaromir Jagr yesterday, as they did with the representatives for a number of other players. They are believed to be having further discussions with Jagr's camp, but there is no evidence they have -- or will -- make a contract offer.

The Penguins acquired Hossa and winger Pascal Dupuis from Atlanta at the Feb. 26 trade deadline and put him alongside Sidney Crosby on the top line.

He had three goals and seven assists in 12 regular-season games here, then added 12 goals and 14 assists in 20 playoff games, as he shed his reputation for struggling in the post-season.

More details in tomorrow's Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.


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