Rossi drops a lot of insight in this piece. First and foremost, the possibility of letting Gonchar walk after this season. At first I was thinking "now way that happens" but after I digested it, it's not much different than making a trade for a rent-a-player (Hossa) the only difference is the Pens aren't trading anything away.
Secondly, Rossi confirms that Letang is asking for a contract in the $4 mil. per year range. One thing that makes me feel a little better about the situation is that Letang is a RFA and not unrestricted. I don't see him going anywhere next year. Hopefully they can reach some common ground around $3 mil. per. Although I do think $4 mil. is a bit much for an unproven 23 year old player, he's been outperforming Goligoski by a mile and should command significantly better contract.
As for the Leopold trade, I was hoping for more of a stay-at-home physical defenseman like Andy Sutton or James Wisniewski but if Leopold is the kind of D-man Bylsma wants, who am I to argue?