The Pittsburgh Penguins have signed veteran center Matt Cullen to a one-year, $800k contract, the team announced on Thursday. This is the third time that Cullen will play under Penguins GM Jim Rutherford, notably Rutherford brought Cullen to the Carolina Hurricanes for their Stanley Cup victory.
Cullen may not be the player he was at his peak, but he has declined with age far less than many forwards and remains a strong depth player who is good on the face off dot, provides defensive utility and can still produce solid secondary scoring.
Talking about joining the team, Cullen said, via the Penguins site, “I just think of it as a gift, I really do… I know I’m getting near the end of my career. You don’t get many opportunities to make a run at a Stanley Cup.Having been there once before, I understand how hard it is to get there and I’d just love to get another chance at it.”
Cullen has played 1,212 career NHL games, posting seven goals and 18 assists through 62 games with Nashville last year. In his 17-season career, he has spent time with the Anaheim Ducks, Florida Panthers, Hurricanes, New York Rangers, Ottawa Senators and Minnesota Wild, all before joining the Predators two seasons ago.
— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) August 6, 2015
He, along with recent acquisition Nick Bonino, will likely complete the four center positions on the Penguins roster, with those two sitting behind Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin.