Penguins acquire Trevor Daley from Blackhawks for Rob Scuderi

PITTSBURGH -- The Pittsburgh Penguins made their coaching change over the weekend but they still needed to do something about their defense. They tried to address that Monday night when they traded Rob Scuderi to the Chicago Blackhawks for Trevor Daley

Scuderi has been an issue on the Penguins' blue line since former general manager Ray Shero brought him back to the team and signed him to a four-year contract in free agency prior to the 2013-14 season. He had spent the first part of his career in Pittsburgh and was a part of their 2009 Stanley Cup team before leaving to join the Kings. The Penguins hoped that he could recapture some of that magic in his second stint with the team but he was clearly at a point in his career where he was no longer a steady, top-four defensemen and the contract quickly became an albatross on their already tight salary cap situation. 

He was supposed to be in the lineup Monday night against the Washington Capitals but was a last-minute scratch.

Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford said after the game that they had talked about Daley for about a month but didn't really get close to a deal until the past two or three days. 

Both players are signed through the end of next season and have nearly identical cap hits, but the Penguins are picking up 33 percent Scuderi's contract, so the Blackhawks will save some money against the cap.  

Daley spent the first 29 games of the season with the Blackhawks after he was acquired as part of the Patrick Sharp trade over the summer. They had hoped he could be a top-four player to help make up for the loss of Johnny Oduya in free agency, but he never really seemed to be a fit.

He has put up some decent offensive numbers in the past, including last season in Dallas when he scored 16 goals in only 68 games, but has had his problems defensively.

The Penguins desperately need some help on their blue line when it comes to moving the puck and generating offense, and Daley could help in that area, at least more than Scuderi could. 

"He is a mobile defenseman, he is a puck moving guy, he jumps into the play and can join the rush and score goals," new Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said after the game on Monday. "Certainly he is a guy that can help us moving the puck out of our end zone and can help us keep the puck and then create some offense off the rush. I think mobility as a defenseman, or as a group of defensemen, is really helpful as far as getting pucks out quickly and helping our team get out of our zone a little cleaner and a little more often, and I think he is going to help in that regard."

In 29 games this season with the Blackhawks he has zero goals and six assists while playing just 14 minutes per game. He should see an increased role in Pittsburgh.

Rob Scuderi is on his way to the Chicago Blackhawks. (USATSI)
Rob Scuderi is on his way to the Chicago Blackhawks. (USATSI)
CBS Sports Writer

Adam Gretz has been writing about the NHL and taking an analytical approach to the game since the start of the 2008 season. A member of the PHWA since 2015, he has spent more than three years covering... Full Bio

Our Latest Stories