The Pittsburgh Penguins are aggressively pursuing Vancouver Canucks center Ryan Kesler, reports the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.
Penguins general manager Ray Shero has been pursuing Kesler since January and would like to make a deal before the NHL Trade Deadline at 3 p.m. Wednesday.
A proposed deal would send Kesler to the Penguins in exchange for center Brandon Sutter, two 2014 draft picks — likely a first- and third-round — and the Canucks’ choice of defensemen Simon Despres or Brian Dumoulin, the sources said.
It is possible the deal could involve another Canucks and Penguins player, but Shero was looking only to acquire Kesler, the sources said.
According to the report, Shero would like to return to the big-three center format that helped them reach the 2008 Stanley Cup Final and win the Cup in 2009
Kesler, 29, has two more years remaining on his contract, with a $5 million salary-cap charge. Kesler has scored 21 goals to go with 18 assists in 61 games for the Canucks.