Penguins bring back Sergei Gonchar with tryout contract

Penguins bring back Sergei Gonchar with tryout contract

Sergei Gonchar told TVA Sports in June that he wants to play one more season in the NHL. He’ll be given an opportunity to fulfill that goal through a tryout contract with his old friends at the Pittsburgh Penguins.

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The Penguins announced that the 41-year old defenseman has inked a tryout deal and will join the club next month for training camp. Gonchar is good friends with fellow Russian Evgeni Malkin, and a number of his teammates from those five years with the organization are still on the roster.

From the Penguins:

The 6-foot-2, 210-pound defenseman is currently the sixth-highest scoring blueliner in Penguins history, having compiled 54 goals, 205 assists and 259 points in 322 regular-season games. Gonchar has added 44 points (7G-37A) in 60 playoff games. Only Larry Murphy and Kris Letang have more postseason points in club history.

"I know this is a determined man that still wants to play and still feels he can contribute," Penguins GM Jim Rutherford told Jenn Menendez of the Post-Gazette.

After spending five years in Pittsburgh, which included being part of their 2009 Stanley Cup winning team, Gonchar has played for the Ottawa Senators, Dallas Stars and Montreal Canadiens. His production, as you can image, has dipped with age (don't even look at his fancy stats), but with the Penguins’ roster featuring a number of young defenseman, the experience from his 1,301 NHL games can be of a positive influence ... at least through training camp, because it will say a lot about the organization's defense should he earn a contract in the end.