Rob Scuderi returns to Penguins, signs four-year, $13.5 million deal

Rob Scuderi denying Johan Franzen in the crease to help preserve the Pittsburgh Penguins' 2-1 victory in Game 6 of the 2009 Stanley Cup Final, and forcing a Game 7, helped the defenseman earn a fat contract that summer with the Los Angeles Kings.

Dubbed "The Piece", the Penguins never filled that hole defensively when he left, so four years later general manage Ray Shero has decided to bring that piece back.

By signing a four-year, $13.5 million deal with the Penguins, Scuderi will likely be alongside Kris Letang on the team's top defensive pairing. The four years might make you wince, considering Scuderi is 34-years old, but it was obvious Pittsburgh needed an upgrade on the blueline and they believe this signing will help.

The Penguins now have just over $750,000 in cap space available, according to CapGeek. Teams are able to exceed the cap ceiling by 10-percent over the summer.

When it became obvious that he was going to be testing the free agent market, Scuderi had a list of teams he was interested in. The Penguins weren't on that list because, as he told TSN, he didn't believe they were going to be in the mix for his services.

That list also included only Eastern Conference teams.

"[A]t this stage of my career I’d like to be a little closer to my home and to my parents and in-laws," said the New York native. "It came down as a family decision.”

"I wasn't going to leave Los Angeles to play for another team in the Western Conference."

Follow Sean Leahy on Twitter at @Sean_Leahy

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