The Pittsburgh Penguins have had a very interesting off-season. It started with them missing the playoffs for the first time in a long time.
They barely missed but not getting into the dance doesn’t go over as well in that organization as it might elsewhere. Not now.
They know a rebuild is coming in the near future but they don’t think they should be doing anything other than competing for a Stanley Cup when they have Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and Kristopher Letang in the mix.
Over the summer, they hired Kyle Dubas to be the President of Hockey Operations and General Manager. That is obviously significant as he leaves the Toronto Maple Leafs after having tons of success there.
The Pittsburgh Penguins are clearly still going for the Stanley Cup right now.
Dubas has made a ton of really great additions to this team and that includes the reigning Norris Trophy winner Erik Karlsson.
He added him in a blockbuster three-team trade with the San Jose Sharks and Montreal Canadiens. Now, the Penguins are going into the season with a bunch of really good players trying to get one last Stanley Cup late in their career.
On Wednesday, they announced another really smart move for their front office. They named Doug Wilson to be a Senior Advisor of Hockey Operations.
Of course, Wilson comes from the San Jose Sharks where he was the GM from 2003-2022. During that tenure, the Sharks were mostly one of the best teams in the league.
Wilson put a winning team after a winning team on the ice. He is hoping to bring that wealth of experience and success to this Penguins team.
It is funny because the one time the Sharks made it to the final, it was the Penguins that defeated them. Life comes at you fast.
Before joining an NHL front office, Wilson was a Hall of Fame Norris Trophy-winning defenseman himself. He spent 14 years with the Chicago Blackhawks before finishing his career (two years) with the San Jose Sharks. That is over 40 years worth of time associated with the NHL.
This was a great move for the Pittsburgh Penguins. Between Dubas and Wilson, there is a lot of brain power going on. It will be fun to see what they can come up with as this team finishes out its competitive window and then starts to rebuild.