Carolina Hurricanes forward Jake Guentzel and Pittsburgh Penguins GM Kyle Dubas
Photo credit: Puck Reporter

Kyle Dubas fires back at Jake Guentzel after criticizing the Penguins

Published March 29, 2024 at 1:00 PM

Pittsburgh Penguins general manager Kyle Dubas recently responded to Jake Guentzel's comments after a significant trade deadline deal, adopting a pragmatic business approach.

Over the past couple of seasons, the Penguins faced challenges, particularly with new general manager Kyle Dubas inheriting a tough situation in the offseason while the team aimed to secure a playoff spot. However, as it became apparent that playoffs were out of reach this year, the team shifted its strategy. Dubas made a pivotal move by trading Jake Guentzel to the Carolina Hurricanes, marking a significant change for the team. Earlier this week, the Penguins and the Hurricanes faced off for the first time since the trade.

Jake Guentzel's Tribute Video from PPG. Standing ovation and thunderous applause!! #LetsGoPens

During his return to Pittsburgh, Guentzel received a heartfelt ovation from the Penguins fans, which visibly moved him and his family.

In a surprising turn of events, the Penguins emerged victorious against the Hurricanes with a score of 4-1. Post-game, Guentzel expressed that he never desired to leave the Penguins.

Responding to Guentzel's remarks, Penguins GM Kyle Dubas acknowledged the emotional aspect but emphasized the business nature of the NHL. He explained that while he had hoped for an optimistic outcome for the team's performance, the reality dictated different decision-making, leading to Guentzel's trade. Dubas expressed understanding for Guentzel's sentiments, considering the emotional post-game context.

"He's entitled to his opinion, especially in this market, to give his opinion. What I would say is that going into this year, I hoped that everything would go to the most optimistic viewpoint, we would be a contending team, and that would dictate decision-making differently than it did. I'm sorry that it ended up being Jake as the one whose contract was up at that time that's how he feels about it. Especially right after a game, competitors like Jake are emotional. He's entitled to feel how he feels, and I don't take umbrage at all."

Unfortunately, such decisions are inherent to the NHL's business dynamics. Guentzel may have the chance to re-sign with the Penguins in the offseason, but the current situation might have strained his relationship with the team irreparably.

As seen on House Of Hockey
Kyle Dubas Responds to Jake Guentzel's Criticism Of Penguins
March 29   |   55 answers
Kyle Dubas fires back at Jake Guentzel after criticizing the Penguins

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