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The case for the Penguins trading Crosby and Malkin

The era of the Penguins being an elite team appears to be over. Is it time to trade Evgeni Malkin and/or Sidney Crosby and start rebuilding? Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Barring a miracle turnaround under coach Mike Sullivan, it appears the Pittsburgh Penguins' run as an elite team is over, whether they make the playoffs this season or not.

Recently fired coach Mike Johnston might be at fault for some of their struggles, but the Penguins' big picture is clear: They have fading superstars, a broken-down prospect system and bandages covering up giant gashes in the team's depth.