Based on the way Thomas Di Pauli’s first season as a pro went last year, it’d be easy to think he spent most of his days spilling salt over broken mirrors underneath a ladder with a black cat. It was a rather unfortunate year to say the least, one riddled with injuries.

First it was a knee ailment suffered during training camp. Then once he got healthy, a nagging issue in his back required surgery to fix. That ultimately sidelined him for three whole months. Finally, a slash cut him right back down with a broken finger that ended his season for good. After all of that, the promising two-way forward was limited to just 21 games.

Bad luck like that would give anyone a good reason to mope around and curse the heavens, but at the recent Prospects Challenge in Buffalo, New York, not even the Karate Kid could wax the smile off of Di Pauli’s face.

Grinning ear-to-ear after every game, the Italian-born 23-year-old couldn’t contain his excitement when talking about his healthy status. By the time the tournament was over, Di Pauli had one word to describe how he felt.


“I feel strong, I feel fast, and I feel confidence,” Di Pauli said following the Penguins prospects’ title-clinching game against the Buffalo Sabres. “I guess I’m going to keep having fun, because right now the hockey is flowing and it’s been so fun to play.”

Di Pauli spent most of his summer altering his training regimen and his diet. Di Pauli cited the time he spent observing Penguins veterans like Tom Kostopoulos as a huge inspiration for him when he was sidelined, and for good reason. Not only does Kostopoulos still produce offense in his late 30’s, but he’s only missed one game due to injury over the past two seasons.

Di Pauli hasn’t altered his eating habits to completely mirror the gluten-free lifestyle of his captain, but he is now a pescetarian. In the gym, he’s placed an added emphasis on flexibility and mobility over strength, attempting to ensure that his body can better handle the rigors of pro hockey.

Everything the oft-injured rookie changed from last year to now is a direct result of his misfortune.

“I learned from it,” he said. “I had the whole summer to regroup and focus on this year. I’m a firm believer that when things like that happen, it can make you stronger. I’m trying to look at it as a positive.”

The changes he’s made off the ice appear to be already translating to his on-ice performance, as well.

“Now [Di Pauli]’s healthy, and you can see the difference,” said Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins head coach Clark Donatelli. “You can see he’s got more jump. He’s a little bit quicker, and he’s a quick player to begin with.”

With his health in check, Di Pauli has his sights set on making a big impact with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. Technically, because he was robbed of so many games last year due to all of his miscellaneous setbacks, he still qualifies as a rookie by American Hockey League standards. That puts him right in the mix with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s expected and anticipated rookie class, including Zach Aston-Reese, Daniel Sprong and Adam Johnson.

Despite being existing in a crowded field not only of rookies, but the Penguins organization’s overall depth chart at forward, a healthy Thomas Di Pauli has his sights set on reaching the NHL. Soon.

“I know the player I am and I’ve always known the player I can be,” Di Pauli said. “I won’t be surprised if I’m playing [in Pittsburgh] sooner rather than later. I know I can make that jump. So I’m going to keep hammering away, paying my dues and having fun, because I’m confident that I can play there.”

2017-18 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information


The Pittsburgh Penguins have invited 59 players to their 2017 training camp, it was announced Thursday by executive vice president and general manager Jim Rutherford.

Head coach Mike Sullivan’s camp roster (DOWNLOAD ROSTER HERE) will include 34 forwards, 19 defensemen and six goaltenders. Players will take the ice for the first time on Friday, September 15 at 9:00 AM at the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex in Cranberry.

All training camp practices at the UMPC Lemieux Sports Complex are free of charge and open to the public.

This year’s camp roster built by Rutherford and his staff includes 18 players who logged action for the Penguins during the 2017 playoff run.

Players will be available to the media following their final on-ice session of the day.

Leading the way once again is captain Sidney Crosby, winner of consecutive Conn Smythe Trophies; Evgeni Malkin, who led the NHL playoffs in points with 28 last spring, the second time in his career he’s done that; returning high-scoring blueliner Kris Letang; and goalie Matt Murray, who has backstopped the Penguins to Cup victories in each of his first two years in the league.

A new season brings new faces to the equation, and some of the veteran newcomers this season are defenseman Matt Hunwick and goalie Antti Niemi, both of whom signed as free agents on July 1, and forward Ryan Reaves, acquired in a draft-day trade from St. Louis.

Hunwick was a key catalyst in Toronto’s ascension to become a playoff team last year, while Niemi has won 227 career NHL games and backstopped the Chicago Blackhawks to a Stanley Cup championship in 2010. Reaves enjoyed a career year with the Blues last season, setting career highs in goals (7), assists (6) and points (13) while ranking 10th in the NHL with 239 hits.

Center Jay McClement, one of the top forward penalty-killing specialists in the NHL, will be attending camp on a professional tryout contract. A veteran of 12 NHL seasons, McClement spent the last three years with the Carolina Hurricanes, where he tallied 15 goals and 40 points in 224 contests, and won 53.7% of his faceoffs.

Sullivan’s squad begins camp at 9:00 AM on Friday with a pair of practices, as Team 1 will be on Rink 1, and Team 2 will practice on Rink 2.

Teams 1 and 2 will then partake in a scrimmage against one another from 10:00-10:45 AM on Rink 1, before both squads finish their morning with conditioning until 11:05 AM.

Team 3 has two practice sessions on Friday, both on Rink 1. That team will have its first practice from 11:30 AM-12:15 PM, then it will finish with a practice that spans from 12:45-1:30 PM.

Below is the Pittsburgh Penguins’ training camp schedule through September 21:

Friday, September 15

9:00-9:45 AM – Team 1 Practice (Rink 1)

9:00-9:45 AM – Team 2 Practice (Rink 2)

9:45 AM – Jim Rutherford Media Availability (Media Room)

10:00-10:45 AM – Team 1 vs. Team 2 Scrimmage (Rink 1)

10:45-11:05 AM – Teams 1 and 2 Conditioning (Rinks 1 & 2)

Post Conditioning – Teams 1 and 2 Media Availability

11:30 AM-12:15 PM – Team 3 Practice (Rink 1)

12:45-1:30 PM – Team 3 Practice and Conditioning (Rink 1)

Post Conditioning – Team 3 Media Availability

Saturday, September 16

9:00-9:45 AM – Team 2 Practice (Rink 1)

9:00-9:45 AM – Team 3 Practice (Rink 2)

10:00-10:45 AM – Team 2 vs. Team 3 Scrimmage (Rink 1)

10:45-11:05 AM – Teams 2 and 3 Conditioning (Rinks 1 & 2)

Post Conditioning – Teams 2 and 3 Media Availability

11:30 AM-12:15 PM – Team 1 Practice (Rink 1)

12:45-1:30 PM – Team 1 Practice and Conditioning (Rink 1)

Post Conditioning – Team 1 Media Availability

Sunday, September 17

9:00-9:45 AM – Team 3 Practice (Rink 1)

9:00-9:45 AM – Team 1 Practice (Rink 2)

10:00-10:45 AM – Team 3 vs. Team 1 Scrimmage (Rink 1)

10:45-11:05 AM – Teams 3 and 1 Conditioning (Rinks 1 & 2)

Post Conditioning – Teams 3 and 1 Media Availability

11:30 AM-12:15 PM – Team 2 Practice (Rink 1)

12:45-1:30 PM – Team 2 Practice and Conditioning (Rink 1)

Post Conditioning – Team 1 Media Availability

Monday, September 18

9:00-9:45 AM – Team TBD Practice (Rink 1)

10:00-10:45 AM – Team TBD Practice (Rink 1)

Following the 10:00 AM Practice – Team TBD Media Availability

11:00 AM-12:30 PM – Championship Game – Teams TBD (Rink 1)

Post-Game Media Availability

Tuesday, September 19

11:30 AM – Morning Skate – Game Group (Rink 1)

Post-Practice – Media Availability

10:00 AM – Non-Game Group Practice (Rink 2)

7:00 PM – GAME vs. BUFFALO (Pegula Ice Arena)


Wednesday, September 20

10:00 AM – Morning Skate – Game Group (Rink 1)

Post-Practice – Media Availability

11:00 AM-1:00 PM – Non-Game Group Practice (Rink 2)

7:00 PM – GAME vs. DETROIT (PPG Paints Arena)


Thursday, September 21


2017-18 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information


Have you ever dreamt of hitting the ice with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins?  Well, here’s your chance (sort of).

We’re looking for a few good skaters to join the WBS Pens Ice Crew for the 2017-18 season.  This group of skaters helps to keep the playing surface in top notch condition during breaks in action, assists with intermission activities on the ice, and occasionally jumps in to help on the concourse before the game.

Please fill out the form below if you are interested.  There will also be an on-ice evaluation on the morning of Sunday, September 24 that is mandatory for any new skaters (we will let you know the time after receiving your info).

Thanks for your interest and Let’s Go PENS!

WBS Penguins Ice Crew


Jeff Taylor will be among the players who suited up for the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins participating in the 2017 Prospects Challenge in Buffalo

Daniel Sprong and Zach Aston-Reese headline the 24-man roster (full roster and player bios) that the Pittsburgh Penguins will send to participate in the 2017 Prospects Challenge held at the HarborCenter in Buffalo, New York from September 8-11.

This year, the Penguins will compete against rookies from the host Buffalo Sabres, the New Jersey Devils and the Boston Bruins. This is Pittsburgh’s first year competing in Buffalo after several years participating in a rookie tournament in London, Ontario.

Pittsburgh will play in the opening game of the Prospects Challenge on Friday, September 8 at 3:30 PM. The Penguins will also play on Saturday, September 9 at 3:30 PM against New Jersey, before concluding with a night contest against the Sabres on Monday, September 11 at 7:00 PM.

All three games will be broadcast live on with Josh Getzoff handling play-by-play duties. Michelle Crechiolo and the Pens’ social media team will be on hand to provide coverage all weekend.

Prior to departing for Buffalo, the Penguins prospects will practice on Thursday, September 7 at 10:30 AM at the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex in Cranberry, Pa. Players, coaches and members of the development staff will be available to the media immediately following practice.

During the Prospects Challenge, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton head coach Clark Donatelli will be behind the bench for the Penguins, alongside his assistants, J.D. Forrest and Tim Army.

Sprong, 20, who skated in 18 NHL regular-season games for the Penguins as an 18 year old in 2015-16, has been a member of Pittsburgh’s ‘Black Aces’ taxi squad during the back-to-back Stanley Cup runs. Back in 2015, Sprong used a strong rookie tournament in London, Ontario to eventually make the NHL roster out of training camp, before returning to his junior club in Charlottetown of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.

Last year, Sprong’s season was delayed by offseason shoulder surgery, but when he returned to the ice, he was one of the most dominant skaters in the QMJHL. In just 31 games with Charlottetown, he produced 32 goals and 59 points, including four hat tricks and a four-goal game.

Aston-Reese, 23, joined the Pittsburgh organization as an undrafted free agent from Northeastern after leading the NCAA in goals (31) and points (63) in 2016-17. In a brief late-season cameo with WBS, Aston-Reese scored three goals and eight points in 10 games.

Here are some tidbits on the remainder of Pittsburgh’s Prospects Challenge roster:

*Five more players in addition to Sprong and Aston-Reese – defensemen Lukas Bengtsson, Ethan Prow and Jeff Taylor; and forwards Teddy Blueger and Thomas Di Pauli – are prospects signed to NHL contracts that have also logged action with WBS.

*Rookie free agent forward Adam Johnson, who inked an entry-level deal with Pittsburgh following a strong showing at the team’s annual prospect development camp in July, will compete in his first game action in a Penguins jersey. Johnson was second on Minnesota-Duluth in goals (18) and points (37) as a sophomore last year.

*Three members of the Penguins’ 2017 draft class will suit up, including top pick Zachary Lauzon. The 18-year-old defenseman was chosen by the Penguins in the second round (51st overall). He will be joined by forward Jan Drozg, a fifth-round (152nd overall) pick, and fellow blueliner Antti Palojarvi, who was selected in the sixth round (186th overall).

*Freddie Tiffels, a 22-year-old 2015 sixth-round (167thoverall) draft pick, will be joining Johnson in seeing his first game action with Pittsburgh following a three-year collegiate career at Western Michigan.

*Of the 24 players attending the Prospects Challenge, 17 attended Pittsburgh’s prospect development camp in July.

Pittsburgh Penguins’ 2017 Prospects Challenge Schedule

Thursday, September 7

10:30 AM – Practice at the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex

Friday, September 8

9:00 AM – Morning Skate (KeyBank Rink)

3:30 PM – Game vs. Boston (Kaybank Rink)

Saturday, September 9

9:00 AM – Morning Skate (New Wave Energy Rink)

3:30 PM – Game vs. New Jersey (KeyBank Rink)

Monday, September 11

11:00 AM – Morning Skate (New Wave Energy Rink)

7:00 PM – Game vs. Buffalo (KeyBank Rink)

2017-18 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information


The Pittsburgh Penguins have re-signed forward Jean-Sebastien Dea to a one-year contract, it was announced today by executive vice president and general manager Jim Rutherford.

The two-way deal runs through the 2017-18 season and has an average annual value of $650,000 at the NHL level.

Dea, 23, made his NHL debut for the Penguins in the 2016-17 regular-season finale against the New York Rangers. He was a member of the 2016 and ’17 Penguins’ ‘Black Aces’ taxi squad when the Pens won back-to-back Stanley Cup championships.

A 5-foot-11, 175-pound Laval, Quebec native, Dea has played three seasons with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the American Hockey League. In 2016-17, he played 73 games, the second most on WBS, and notched 34 points (18G-16A), the seventh most on the team.

In 2015-16, Dea set career highs across the board in games played (75), goals (20), assists (16), points (36), plus-minus (+13) and shots (147) with WBS. His seven power-play goals as a rookie in 2014-15 tied him for the team lead with Scott Wilson.

Dea was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Penguins on September 17, 2013. He played three seasons with the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. With the Huskies, Dea tallied 192 career points (111G-81A). In 2013-14, he scored 49 goals, 18 more than second-highest player on the team. That total set a single-season career high and tied for the fourth most in the QMJHL.

The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins will open their next season on Oct. 7 against the Charlotte Checkers at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza. Season ticket packages for the 2017-18 season of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins hockey, including full season, 22-game, 12-game and Flexbook plans, are available by contacting the Penguins directly at (570) 208-7367.

2017-18 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information


Clark Donatelli got his first taste of coaching hockey at a high level back in 2010, when he was a volunteer assistant for the Providence Friars in the NCAA.

The head coach that took a chance on Donatelli was none other than Tim Army.

Now, seven years later, the roles are reversed.

Army was named an assistant coach on Donatelli’s staff with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins last week, and is looking forward to working alongside the coach he formerly mentored.

“We have a great relationship,” said Army, 54, who actually grew up playing against Donatelli as a youngster in Rhode Island.  “He came in and helped me that year at Providence in 2010-11.  The thing that impressed me the most about Clarkie was how instinctive he is, how intuitive he is as a coach.  He has a great sense for the game, for his players.

“He also has a great personality, he’s very engaging.  He has a great relationship with his players, his ability to communicate is outstanding.”

Army is no stranger to coaching in the pros.  After five seasons as an assistant for the Friars (1988-93) he moved to the NHL, serving on Ron Wilson’s staffs with the Anaheim Ducks (1993-97) and the Washington Capitals (1997-2002).

He received his first head coaching job with the Capitals AHL affiliate, the Portland Pirates, in 2002, and stayed in Maine for three years. He returned to Providence as the Friars’ head coach in 2005, and spent the past six seasons as a member of the Colorado Avalanche’s coaching staff.

And although Army has spent the past half decade on the other side of the Rockies, he’s kept a close eye on Donatelli’s progress, thanks largely to a family connection.  Army’s son, Derek, spent two seasons playing under Donatelli with the Wheeling Nailers, as well as a short stint with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton in 2015-16.

“I’ve also seen him grow as a coach when Derek was playing for him, both in Wheeling and Wilkes-Barre.  And his game management, his sense for his players, his ability to make adjustments, his read for the game, is tremendous,” said Army.  “To work for someone who has those instincts, it’s very exciting.”

2017-18 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information


When Dennis Bonvie arrived in Wilkes-Barre back in 1999, he had no idea of the impact he would make on his new team, let alone hockey fans in Northeast Pennsylvania.

But he certainly sees the mark he’s left now.

Bonvie was among the dozen figures inducted into the Luzerne County Sports Hall of Fame on Sunday night at the Best Western Genetti Hotel & Conference Center in downtown Wilkes-Barre.  He’s the first member of the Penguins to receive the honor from the local organization.

But it wasn’t an honor Bonvie was expecting until he received a phone call two months ago.

“I was kind of in awe, I didn’t know what to say,” he stated from the podium in a packed ballroom.  “Anytime you can be part of a hall of fame with these special people, these special athletes, you say yes right away.”

Already a seasoned-pro of six seasons, Bonvie joined the Penguins organization just prior to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s first training camp, and spent two years with the club.  He experienced the lows (a last place finish in the team’s inaugural season) and highs (a trip to the Calder Cup Finals in the second) in a short amount of time.

But it was the thrills, big hits and fisticuffs that he displayed that turned the what was officially known as the Northeastern Pennsylvania Civic Arena and Convention Center into the “House That Bonvie Built.”

Bonvie spent considerable time away from the rink engaging with fans throughout the area, endearing himself to hockey aficionados and newcomers alike.  He never shied away from a photo or autograph, and generously donated time to community appearances and charity events.

The native of Antigonish, Nova Scotia left the area after the 2000-01 campaign, but returned to the Penguins four years later to great fanfare.  He spent the final three seasons of his 15-year pro career with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, before hanging up the skates at the conclusion of the 2007-08 campaign.

But that was hardly the last Penguins fans would see of Bonvie, as he and his family (wife Kelly, son Rhys, and daughter Davyn) continue to reside in Luzerne County today.

“I came here not knowing what Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania was,” said Bonvie.  “It’s our second home now.”

For more information on the Luzerne County Sports Hall of Fame, visit the organizations official website.

2017-18 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information


by Mike O’Brien

When Mike Sullivan went out of his way to bestow the moniker of “Buzzsaw” upon Josh Archibald, one could correctly surmise that the head coach, then of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, was a fan of the forward’s style of play.

When Sullivan ascended to become the head coach of the Pittsburgh Penguins, one might have also assumed that an NHL call-up would soon follow for Archibald.

But Archibald was not part of the group elevated from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton soon after Sullivan took over in Pittsburgh.  The 2011 6th-round pick instead was forced to watch as teammates, such as Conor Sheary and Scott Wilson, found permanent homes in the NHL and eventually lifted the Stanley Cup.

But patience paid off for Archibald.

Using the tenacity and speed that once drew the admiration of his head coach, Archibald earned a spot with Pittsburgh late in the 2016-17 season, and found himself hoisting Lord Stanley’s Cup.

The third-year pro got off to a fast start this past season with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, skating alongside Oskar Sundqvist and Garrett Wilson to form one of the best lines in the Eastern Conference.  The trio combined for 60 points over the first 31 games of the campaign.

As the Penguins continued to jockey for positioning atop of the American Hockey League standings, Archibald had a career night on Feb. 4, posting two goals and an assist in a 7-1 pummeling of rival Lehigh Valley.

Less than a week later, the 24-year-old received his call-up to Pittsburgh and jetted across the country before taking the ice for his NHL season debut in Arizona.

“It was kind of a long trip.  I left New York and I don’t think I got to Arizona until about midnight and had to get up to do the morning routine, morning skate and video,” Archibald recalled.  “I was really excited to get back out there with the Penguins and show them what I had.”

Archibald showed both the Penguins and Coyotes what he had, notching his first two NHL goals to help Pittsburgh rally and earn a point on Feb. 11.  His first tally opened the scoring as he was quick to a rebound chance and snapped a backhander to the top of the net.

Josh Archibald nets his first NHL goal on February 11 against the Arizona Coyotes.

His second goal showed off the skills that made him one of the top performers for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.

With the Penguins on the penalty kill, Arizona goaltender Mike Smith had trouble handling the puck near the no-touch zone.  Archibald came speeding in on the forecheck to cause havoc.

“It happened really fast,” recalled Archibald.  “[The puck] was almost in that awkward spot in the triangle where he can’t play it.  It was kind of sitting on the line.  So I think he hesitated a little bit and I got in on the forecheck.  I was able to recover it… …My body just took over and I was able to kick it up to myself with literally a wide open net.”

The bang-bang shorthanded goal with 5:22 to go pulled Pittsburgh within one and, with seconds left, Phil Kessel evened the score with the extra attacker. The Penguins ultimately fell in overtime, but Archibald could not have asked for a better personal performance in his season debut.

Archibald appeared in one more game for Pittsburgh before returning to the AHL, but was recalled for good at the end of the March.  While injuries provided the opportunity for the forward to move into the line-up, Archibald believes his speed, getting behind the defense and never giving up on plays helped to establish himself with the Penguins.

Ice time was sparse through the remainder of the regular season, and Archibald found himself in the press box through the first two rounds of the playoffs.  But as Pittsburgh advanced to Eastern Conference Final versus the Ottawa Senators, Archibald made his way back into the line-up for Game Four with his team trailing 2-1 in the series.  The guidance from coaches for his first-ever NHL postseason appearance was brief.

“They just told me, ‘We know how you can play,’” said Archibald. “’You got to go out there and do it.’”

Archibald and the Penguins smacked down Ottawa in a 7-0 victory that tied up the Conference Final.  He went on to dress for two more contests as Pittsburgh defeated the Senators in seven games to make it back-to-back trips to the Stanley Cup Final.

The championship round saw the Penguins match-up against the Nashville Predators. Once again Archibald’s first appearance during the series came in Game Four.

“We felt we wanted to try to put some enthusiasm and energy and speed in the lineup,” Penguins coach Mike Sullivan told the Post-Gazette at the time. “Archie brings all those things to the table. He played some very solid games for us. He’s a guy that brings a certain dimension that we felt we wanted to have.”

Though the Predators knotted the series with a 4-1 win, it was an event that Archibald will forever savor.

“It was just one of those games, but it was a lot of fun,” Archibald said. “Great experience to get in a game like that.”

Of course, it is much easier to look back on such times when you end up on the winning side of history.  That is exactly what happened with the Penguins pitching consecutive shutouts  to claim their second straight Stanley Cup.  Though Game Four was Archibald’s lone contest played during the series, he was on the ice after the deciding contest to take his rightful turn lifting the coveted trophy in the air.  It was a moment that meant that much more with his college and Penguins teammate, Jake Guentzel, passing him the Cup.

“It was a pretty ecstatic moment for me.  For [Jake] to hand me that Cup to me after what we’ve been through kind of together, in college and then him coming into Wilkes-Barre at the end of last year and then even this year in Wilkes-Barre and Pittsburgh, it was pretty awesome.”

Archibald will get a crack at another Stanley Cup and a chance to build on his NHL resume, as he signed a two-year contract with Pittsburgh on July 13.  The one-way deal would seem to indicate a more permanent tenure at the NHL level for Archibald, who hopes that the end of the regular season and playoffs “were a good indication of what I can do.”

If life briefly settled down for Archibald following the Penguins’ Stanley Cup run, things are about to pick up big time in a short while.  Josh and his wife, Bailey, who were married last summer, are expecting their first child in the next week or two.

From marrying his college sweetheart last summer, to scoring his first NHL goals, getting his named etched on the Stanley Cup and soon to be welcoming a new addition to the family, it has been quite the year for Archibald.   There is little question as to where it ranks so far.

“Probably number one,” joked Archibald. “It definitely has been the best year so far.  Hopefully, we can keep building and have even better years from here on out.”

2017-18 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information


Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins training camp is still more than a month away, but two members of the team’s coaching staff will be back behind a bench later this week.

For the second consecutive season, Clark Donatelli will guide the United States Under-18 Select Team at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup.  The eight-team tournament will be held in Breclav, Czech Republic and Bratislava, Slovakia, starting on August 7.

Among the assistants joining Donatelli with Team USA will be Wilkes-Barre/Scranton assistant coach, J.D. Forrest.

The tournament features the top players under the age of 18 from the major hockey playing countries.  The teams are split into two groups (Group A – Czech Republic, Sweden, Switzerland, USA; Group B – Canada, Finland, Russia, Slovakia), with each team playing once against the other countries within its group.

The top two teams in each group will advance to play in semifinal and medal rounds, while the lower ranked teams will face off to determine places five through eight.

Donatelli and Forrest were among the coaches and administrators who helped select the team of 22 skaters from a pool of players at USA Hockey’s Boys Select 17 Player Development Camp, held last month in Amherst, NY.

Last year Donatelli led the U.S. to a second-place finish in the competition, guiding the team to a 4-0 record before falling to the Czech Republic, 4-3, in the championship game.

We will have updates after every game online, and J.D. Forrest will be keeping us updated from overseas with blog posts and photos throughout the tournament.  We hope you’ll follow along with us.

The full U.S. team schedule for the 2017 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup:

 Thursday, August 3  Hungary U-20  2:00 pm  Exhibition Game  Budapest, Hungary
 Saturday, August 5  Slovakia U-18  11:30 am  Exhibition Game  Bratislava, Slovakia
 Monday, August 7  Sweden  9:30 am  Preliminary Round  Breclav, Czech Republic
 Tuesday, August 8  Switzerland  9:30 am  Preliminary Round  Breclav, Czech Republic
 Wednesday, August 9  Czech Republic  1:00 pm  Preliminary Round  Breclav, Czech Republic
 Friday, August 11  TBD  TBD  TBD  TBD
 Saturday, August 12  TBD  TBD  TBD  TBD

Ivan Hlinka played in 256 games as a member of the Czechoslovakian national team and scored 132 goals in international competition. He also played in 544 games in Czechoslovak league, scoring 347 times.  Hlinka was among the first Czech-born players to suit up in the National Hockey League, joining the Vancouver Canucks in 1981.  He set a Canucks rookie record with 60 points (later broken by Pavel Bure).

In 2000, Hlinka took over the head coaching reigns of the Pittsburgh Penguins, guiding the team to a 42-28-9-3 mark, and a spot in the Eastern Conference Final.  He was killed in an automotive accident in the Czech Republic in August of 2004.

2017-18 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information


The Pittsburgh Penguins have named Scott Young director of player development, Jarrod Skalde player development coach, and Brendan Sullivan goaltending development coach, it was announced today by executive vice president and general manager Jim Rutherford.

Young, 49, enjoyed a distinguished 16-plus year NHL career that included Stanley Cup championships with the Penguins in 1991 and the Colorado Avalanche in ’96. He also had a stellar international career with USA Hockey, all of which earned him enshrinement into the United States Hockey Hall of Fame as part of the Class of 2017.

A native of Clinton, Massachusetts, Young most recently served on the hockey staff at his college alma mater, Boston University, since 2014. His tenure there began as the school’s director of hockey operations, before he moved behind the bench as an assistant coach for the last two seasons.

Young’s lengthy NHL career saw him skate for six franchises – the Hartford Whalers, Pittsburgh, Quebec/Colorado, Anaheim, St. Louis and Dallas – while amassing regular-season totals of 1,181 games, 342 goals, 415 assists and 757 points. His goal total ranks 10th all-time among American-born players. Young tacked on 87 points (44G-43A) in 141 career NHL playoff contests.

An eight-time 20-goal scorer and seven-time 50-point producer, Young enjoyed his best season with St. Louis in 2000-01, setting careers highs in goals (40) and points (73). In his final NHL season at age 38 in 2005-06, Young led the Blues in scoring with 49 points in his second tour of duty with the club.

The Whalers’ first-round (11th overall) draft pick in 1986, Young played two seasons of college hockey at Boston University, where he was named Hockey East Rookie of the Year as a freshman. During his time with the Terriers, Young was teammates with Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins bench boss Clark Donatelli.

At the international level, Young represented the United States in three Olympic Games (1988, 1992, 2002), three World Championships and three World Junior Championships. Young was also a member of the U.S. team that won the 1996 World Cup of Hockey. The Americans won silver in the ’02 Olympic Games.

As a player, Young skated for a handful of legendary coaches that included Bob Johnson, Herb Brooks, Jack Parker, Joel Quenneville and Marc Crawford.

Skalde, 46, joins the Pittsburgh organization after accumulating a wealth of professional experience as both a player and coach in professional hockey leagues all over the world.

The Niagara Falls, Ontario native enjoyed a 17-plus year professional playing career that included stops with eight NHL clubs over parts of nine seasons.

Skalde was originally a 1989 second-round (26th overall) draft pick of the New Jersey Devils. He broke into the professional ranks in the early ‘90s with the Devils and their American Hockey League affiliate in Utica, where he was teammates with Penguins assistant general manager Bill Guerin, who was chosen fifth overall by New Jersey in ’86.

Since hanging up his skates, Skalde has embarked on a nine-year coaching career that most recently saw him serve as head coach of the Guelph Storm of the Ontario Hockey League over the last two years. Skalde has also been a head coach in the American Hockey League (Norfolk Admirals, 2014-15), ECHL (Cincinnati Cyclones, 2010-13) and the International Hockey League (Bloomington PrairieThunder, 2008-10).

As Cincinnati’s head coach in the ECHL in 2013, Skalde won that circuit’s Coach of the Year award. His coaching career includes a stint as assistant coach of Canada’s entry into the 2016 Under-18 World Junior Championship, and one year as Norfolk’s assistant in 2013-14.

During his playing days, Skalde logged over 1,000 career professional regular-season and playoff games in North America, appearing in 622 AHL contests, 322 games in the now-defunct IHL, and 115 NHL appearances. In addition, he played in professional leagues in Sweden, Switzerland, Asia and Slovenia.

A captain of five different clubs, Skalde was a champion twice as a pro. He won the IHL’s Turner Cup with the Orlando Solar Bears in 2001 and won a championship in Slovenia with HK Jesenice in 2008.

As mentioned, Skalde broke into the NHL with New Jersey, followed by stints with Anaheim, Calgary, San Jose, Dallas, Chicago, Atlanta and Philadelphia. He notched 34 points (13G-21A) with those clubs. He also laced up the skates with nine different franchises in the AHL and seven in the IHL.

Before joining the Devils organization, Skalde played four seasons of junior hockey in the Ontario Hockey League, mostly with the Oshawa Generals, plus a late-season stint with the Belleville Bulls. Skalde and the Generals won both the OHL and Memorial Cup championships in 1990, when one of his teammates included Eric Lindros.

Sullivan, 29, has worked closely with newly-appointed Penguins goaltending coach Mike Buckley for the last eight years as a staff member at Buckley’s GDS Elite training school. Sullivan has also spent the last two years as a scout for the Sioux City Musketeers of the United States Hockey League.

Sullivan, who hails from Fall River, Massachusetts, played four years of college hockey at Lake Forest College, an NCAA Division III school, between 2009-13. He was a four-year starter between the pipes at Lake Forest, earning First-Team All-Conference honors and setting many school records.

Prior to jumping into the college ranks, Sullivan played one year with the Aurora Tigers of the Ontario Junior Hockey League in 2008-09, and he played high school hockey at Catholic Memorial High School, where he was one of the top players in the Boston region. While at Catholic Memorial High School, where he was named his team’s MVP after backstopping his club to a pair of championships, Sullivan began working as a student under Buckley’s tutelage.

2017-18 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information