BLUEGER PLANS ON LEAVING A LASTING IMPRESSION AT TRAINING CAMP


CRANBERRY, Pa. – Teddy Blueger might be a fortune teller. Or a medium. Or a witch! Actually, none of the above is the most likely answer, but he has shown that he’s pretty good at reading the tea leaves.

Five months ago, Teddy Blueger stood in front of the media in the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins locker room and was asked questions about his previous season. He had set career highs in goals and points, proved to be the Penguins’ most reliable penalty killing forward and a stalwart at the faceoff dot. Eventually, the subject of his NHL-readiness came to the forefront, and one reporter mentioned that the Pittsburgh Penguins would have some roster spots up for grabs.

Blueger quickly remarked, “They always say that now.”

Sure enough, Pittsburgh went out and signed a handful of free agents, making it a crowded scene at the center position. Blueger’s prophetic words of caution came to fruition, as those once open positions on the roster seem closed for the time being.

With that in mind, the third-year pro is less concerned with how Penguins management decided to approach free agency this past summer, and is zeroed in on making a name for himself this September at training camp.

“I want to show them that I’m ready to move up to the next level,” Blueger said after his first practice of camp at the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex. “I’m capable of competing here, and helping the team win.”

Due to the logjam of centermen in the Penguins organization at the moment, Blueger expressed a willingness to relocate to either wing if it helped his chances of leaving a lasting impression with Pittsburgh’s coaching staff.

“I’ll play wherever they tell me to play,” he said. “I feel good, comfortable at center, but I’d welcome a move to the wing, too. During a game, things happen so fast that guys are always moving and changing positions. So during a shift, I’ve found myself on the wing sometimes and it doesn’t faze me.”

We still don’t know if he’ll be in Southwestern or Northwestern Pennsylvania to start the season yet, but he’s left little doubt that he’ll certainly help whichever team he makes. Building off of his career offensive numbers from last season, Blueger aimed to improve his skating even more during this most recent offseason. Skating has been a point of emphasis for the Latvian native since he turned pro out of Minnesota State University, and because his perseverance paid dividends last year, it’s reasonable to think it could help his case again.

Of course, it’s hard to see the future and tell exactly what kind of results Blueger’s hard work will yield once the season gets going. But based on his confidence, paired with his proven ability from April to forecast the near future, it’s likely that Blueger will realize his NHL dream soon.

“It’s out of my control, really. I’m doing what I can do to make the team, and I think I’m NHL ready.”

2018-19 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information

NEW LEARN TO SKATE AND PLAY PROGRAMS AT THE TOYOTA SPORTSPLEX


LEARN TO SKATE AT THE TOYOTA SPORTSPLEX

The next Youth Learn to Skate session at the Toyota SportsPlex (40 Coal Street in Wilkes-Barre) will begin Friday, SEPTEMBER 7 and runs through Friday, OCTOBER 26. Registration is just $80 for the eight-week course. You can also pre-rent your child’s skates for an additional $20 for the entire session! Walk-ins are available on a first-come, first serve basis for $13 per session (skate rental not included in walk-up fee).

The Youth Learn To Skate program is designed to teach beginning skaters of all ages.  After completing Learn To Skate, kids can go on to private figure skating lessons, our Little Pens Learn To Play Hockey program, or just attend public skating sessions and skate for FUN!

You can register by contacting Coach Matt Daube at 570-208-9474 or via e-mail at mdaube@toyotasportsplex.com or by Clicking Here!

*All children under the age of 7 MUST wear an approved hockey helmet or bicycle helmet.


LEARN TO PLAY HOCKEY AT THE TOYOTA SPORTSPLEX

The next Youth Learn to Play session at the Toyota SportsPlex (40 Coal Street in Wilkes-Barre) will begin Saturday, SEPTEMBER 8 and runs through Friday, OCTOBER 27. Registration is just $100 for the eight-week course. Skate rentals are available for $3 per weel. Walk-ins are available on a first-come, first serve basis for $15 per session (skate rental not included in walk-up fee).

The Youth Learn to Play Hockey program is designed to introduce fundamental hockey skills to beginner hockey players. All beginner hockey skill sets (skating, puck handling, passing, shooting, and game play) will be focused on to develop and improve players to better ready them for in-house or travel hockey. Learn to Skate is strongly recommended prior to participating in Learn to Play but not required.

You can register by contacting Coach Matt Daube at 570-208-9474 or via e-mail at mdaube@toyotasportsplex.com or by Clicking Here!

*PLEASE NOTE: FULL HOCKEY EQUIPMENT IS REQUIRED! (Equipment includes: Helmet with full cage/shield, shoulder pads, elbow pads, gloves, stick, hockey pants, shin guards, stick and skates)

2018-19 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information

COAL STREET HOCKEY SCHOOL AND OFFICIALS CERTIFICATION


Coal Street Hockey School

The Coal Street Hockey School is returning for its 7th Year: August 20th through the 24th – 8:00am to 4:30pm. For ages 7 through 17, $299 per player/goalie. Cash or checks should be made payable to Toyota SportsPlex. Online registration is also available at toyotasportsplex.com.

This intensive, week-long camp will help get your skater ready for the upcoming season. Instruction will be provided by members of the Toyota SportsPlex coaching staff AND coaches from the new Wilkes University NCAA DIV. III hockey program! For additional information, please contact us at programs@toyotasportsplex.com or mdaube@toyotasportsplex.com, or via phone at 570-208-9474. Thanks!


Ice Hockey Official Certification

Do you love hockey? Have you ever aspired to become an Ice Hockey Official? The NEPA Ice Hockey Officials Association wants to help you “earn while you learn!”

Join us Saturday August 18th from 8AM-4PM at the Toyota SportsPlex to become a certified Ice Hockey Official.

To register go to www.aaharefs.org and follow the registration links or contact Henry Augenstein at henryaugenstein1@gmail.com with any questions.

*PLEASE NOTE – You MUST be 13 years of age or older

2018-19 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information

BID ON PENGUINS JERSEYS, EXPERIENCES AND MORE WITH DASH


Scoring your favorite player’s game-worn jerseys, signed items and other in-game experiences just got easier and more exciting for fans of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, as the team has signed on with DASH Auction to host it’s auctions for the 2018-19 season.

To kick off the partnership, the Penguins will be auctioning off a game-worn Zach Aston-Reese sweater via DASH starting this Monday, August 6, with the auction running through noon on Monday, August 13.  You can preview the auction now on DASH.

Fans around the globe will be able to place bids on player sweaters, game pucks, autographed merchandise and more via the DASH app.  Available for both iOS and Android devices, the DASH app is “the only digital auction platform built specifically for professional sports teams and their fans.”

In order to place bids, fans must first register via DASH – either through the app on a mobile device, or via the Penguins DASH page ( https://web.dashapp.io/auctions/wbspenguins ).  They can then see all upcoming or current auctions for their favorite team, and watch the action in real time as the bids go up.

The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins begin their 20th season in the American Hockey League on October 6, when they host the Springfield Thunderbirds at 7:05pm.  Season ticket packages, including full season, 22-game, 12-game and flex plans, are available now by calling the Penguins at 570-208-7367.

Fans can also request information on ticket packages by filling in and submitting the form below.  

2018-19 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information

TELL US YOUR 20 SEASONS STORIES


The 20th season of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins hockey is right around the corner, and we’re looking forward to a season full of
stories celebrating the team’s history.
And while we’ll be reaching out to players, coaches and other Pens from the past to hear their memories, who we really want to hear from is YOU.
This is your chance to let us know what the Penguins mean to you.
Do you remember your first Penguins game?  Were you a member of the crowd for Game Seven in Bridgeport?  Have another favorite moment on the ice?  Have a chance meeting with a player out in the community?  Spend a memorable night with family or friends watching a game?
Tell us about it.
Give us as much info as you can.  Fill in the form below with your contact info and stories to share them with us.  We’ll be collecting your memories all year, and publishing them online and in our game program.
Thanks for your support of the Penguins in the past, as well as in the present.  Let’s Go Pens!

Your 20 Seasons Story

LINDBERG JOINS PENGUINS (FOR REAL)

The way Tobias Lindberg became a Penguin was… unorthodox. Part of a trade last February that saw him dealt by Vegas to Pittsburgh, Lindberg was swept up in a 24-hour whirlwhind that ultimately kept him exactly where he already was.

When the dust settled, Lindberg remained with Vegas’ AHL affiliate on loan and played out the rest of the season with the Chicago Wolves.

“When the general manager (Jim Rutherford) called me, he said to me, ‘This is a very complicated trade, one that I’ve never seen before,’” Lindberg recalled of the day he was technically dealt to the Penguins. “I didn’t try to let it bother me. I didn’t want to think about it too much. I’m just going to go crazy. I said whatever you guys want me to do, I’ll do it.”

For the time, that meant staying with a different club’s AHL affiliate, but Rutherford has since made it clear that what they want Lindberg to do is be a part of the Penguins’ future.

Lindberg re-signed with Pittsburgh prior to development camp, suggesting that he’s in their plans as a prospect. He might be skating for the Steel City someday, but he’s likely to stop in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton first. The Swedish forward is totally game for a stint in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

“To me, it doesn’t matter where I play. I just want to play a lot,” Lindberg said. “You see [Pittsburgh] has a lot of young guys that come up from Wilkes-Barre. When I was playing in Toronto, we played Wilkes-Barre and saw they always had a good team. If Wilkes-Barre is where I play, I’ll be fortunate to play there. Hopefully, I take on a leading role and play a lot.”

That most recent trade is just another chapter in what has been an eventful career for Lindberg. He has been traded three different times, once from Ottawa to Toronto, then Toronto to Vegas, and most recently Vegas to Pittsburgh, he won a Memorial Cup before turning pro, and has six NHL games under his belt already, too. All of these experiences have made Lindberg much more mature than your average 22-year-old.

“I still look at myself as a young player, even though I’ve packed in a lot in a few years,” he said. “It’s been a lot of trades, a lot of new cities, a lot of new teammates, a lot of injuries. I feel like I’ve learned to be more calm and work on getting a little better every summer and every day, I’m going to play in the NHL some day.”

Even if his path to the show has been full of sharp turns and changes in direction, maybe he can fully realize that dream now that he’s officially a Penguin.

Season ticket packages for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s 20th season, including full season, 22-game, 12-game and Flexbook plans, are available by contacting the Penguins directly at (570) 208-7367.  For more info on season ticket packages, fill in the form below, and a Penguins representative will contact you directly.

2018-19 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information

MILETIC BRINGS HARD WORK, SCORING TOUCH TO PENS

Sam Miletic scored a lot of goals the season before the Pittsburgh Penguins signed him as an undrafted free agent. Sam Miletic scored even more goals the season after the Pittsburgh Penguins signed him as an undrafted free agent.

His impressive offensive figures and all-around demeanor have Penguins brass extremely excited for what he can bring to the table.

“The biggest thing with Sam is his attention to detail,” said Penguins development coach Jarrod Skalde. “He already looks like a pro. He conducts himself like a pro. You can see how he pays attention on the ice to all the little things.”

In typical hockey fashion, Miletic credits his offense to playing with quality teammates in both London and Niagara, but don’t let his soft-spoken humbleness mislead you into thinking he’s shy on talent. His shot explodes off his stick and packs a mighty punch. He’s also shown a willingness to drive to the front of the net with or without the puck.

As his skills developed and his scoring touch blossomed as an undrafted free agent in the Ontario Hockey League, Miletic became a prospect that Pittsburgh couldn’t ignore any more.

“We were so impressed with him last year, that’s why we signed him to the entry-level deal,” Skalde added. “We’re really excited to have him. He seems like a guy that’s already pro-ready.”

Miletic happily accepts any compliments that Skalde, reporters or fans will give him, but he’s always quick to try and deflect accolades to his teammates. That being said, he has no interest in taking a back seat to anyone at this year’s training camp. He’s determined to make coaches and anyone else notice him, one way or another.

“[Pittsburgh] seems to appreciate guys that work hard,” Miletic. “So I’m going to come into the season with that mindset, just like last year, and control what I can control.”

Season ticket packages for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s 20th season, including full season, 22-game, 12-game and Flexbook plans, are available by contacting the Penguins directly at (570) 208-7367.  For more info on season ticket packages, fill in the form below, and a Penguins representative will contact you directly.

2018-19 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information

PITTSBURGH RE-SIGNS TROTMAN, ADDS THREE MORE ON TWO-WAY DEALS

Zach Trotman had 17 points (3+14) in 49 games with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton last season.

The Penguins have signed four players to one-year, two-way contracts, it was announced today by executive vice president and general manager Jim Rutherford.

 
Pittsburgh signed forward Jimmy Hayes, defensemen Zach Trotman and Stefan Elliott, and goaltender John Muse. Trotman spent last year with the Pittsburgh organization, playing most of the season with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, and three NHL games with the Penguins.
 
All four deals contain an average annual value of $650,000 at the NHL level.
 
Hayes and Muse won the 2010 NCAA national championship at Boston College, where they were teammates that season with Penguins’ blueliner Brian Dumoulin.
 
Hayes, 28, spent last season with the New Jersey Devils, tallying nine points (3G-6A) in 33 games. The 6-foot-5, 215-pound Hayes has 334 games of NHL experience with the Chicago Blackhawks, Florida Panthers, Boston Bruins and Devils, producing 54 goals, 55 assists and 109 points. His best season came in 2014-15 with the Panthers, when he established personal highs with 19 goals and 35 points.
 
Hayes was originally chosen by the Toronto Maple Leafs in the second round (60th overall) in the 2008 NHL Draft.
 
Trotman, 27, spent the majority of the ’17-18 campaign with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. He saw action in 49 games, leading the team with a plus-24 while totaling 17 points (7G-10A). A 6-foot-3, 217-pound blueliner, Trotman has 70 games of NHL action with the Penguins and Boston Bruins on his resume (3G-9A-12PTS).
 
Elliott, 27, has played the past two seasons in Europe, skating for HV71 of the Swedish Hockey League in ’17-18 and Ak Bars Kazan from Russia’s KHL the year prior. He won a gold medal with Team Canada at the 2018 Olympic Games.
 
Elliott, who stands 6-foot-1, 190 pounds, has 84 games of NHL experience with the Colorado Avalanche, Arizona Coyotes and Nashville Predators, netting eight goals, 16 assists and 24 points. He was an AHL All-Star with the Lake Erie Monsters in 2014-15 when he led all league blueliners with 19 goals. Colorado chose Elliott in the second round (49th overall) in 2009.
 
Muse, 27, split last season between the AHL’s Lehigh Valley Phantoms and the Reading Royals of the ECHL. He posted a .919 save percentage in 15 games with the Phantoms, and a .931 mark in 26 games with Reading. Muse won a pair of national championships with Boston College in 2008 and ’10, then led the Florida Everblades of the ECHL to the 2012 Kelley Cup championship. He was the ECHL’s playoff MVP in ’12.
 
Muse was originally signed by Rutherford and the Carolina Hurricanes organization as an undrafted free agent in 2011.
Season ticket packages for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s 20th season, including full season, 22-game, 12-game and Flexbook plans, are available by contacting the Penguins directly at (570) 208-7367.  For more info on season ticket packages, fill in the form below, and a Penguins representative will contact you directly.

2018-19 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information

DEVELOPMENT CAMP 3-ON-3 TOURNAMENT NOTEBOOK

The Penguins concluded their 2018 Development Camp with a three-on-three scrimmage tournament. Nick Hart was on hand to take in the festivities which were played in front of a capacity crowd at the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex in Cranberry, Pennsylvania.


First things first, this was a rather quick event. The tournament consisted of only three games: Two teams played one another at the same time, then to two victors faced off in the “Final”. The games were played with two 14-minute halves instead of three periods, and, of course, every second was played at three-on-three.

The four teams involved looked like this…

FIRST ROUND

I decided to go over to the side of the ice that featured Team Maatta vs. Team Dumoulin. I wanted to see a team that had Linus Ölund, Niclas Almari and recent draft pick Calen Addison in action, plus there was no way I was going to miss Tom Kostopoulos’ debut behind the bench.

• There’s good flow to this game. Not a lot of stoppages from the goalies. Both teams looking for home run passes.

• Kostopoulos is on the Team Dumoulin side of things, but his opposing coach, Jarrod Skalde, is getting some unexpected help. Next to him is Kasper Björkqvist, another highly-touted Penguins prospect who was held out of development camp drills due to a minor injury.

• There are scoring chances aplenty, but no goals until the two squads score in quick succession. It’s 1-1 midway through the first half.

• Controversy! Niclas Almari appears to tuck a nasty backhand breakaway goal, off the back bar and out, but the referee waves it off. Almari can’t believe it. This may have been your turning point in the game, at least, that’s what Coach Björkqvist was saying later in the night.

• Team Dumoulin gets a goal before the half, but Jan Drozg takes over early in the second. He’s making great individual efforts to set up chance after chance. Eventually, Will MacKinnon scores on a nasty backhand roof job. This one counts, and it’s 3-1, Team Dumoulin.

• Ölund has been a stand-out at camp all week. It’s been a little bit harder for him to make his presence felt in three-on-three, since he doesn’t have the puck on his stick at all times and its harder to show off his well-rounded game with all the open ice. Still, I think Wilkes-Barre/Scranton fans should be excited to see this young man get to work this season.

• Drozg almost scores, but quickly gathers his rebound and throws it in front for Connor Roberts to finish the job. 4-1, Team Dumoulin.

• With time dwindling down and down by three goals, Skalde pulls his goalie for an extra attacker with about four minutes left in the game. Bold strategy, Cotton. Let’s see if it pays off.

• Addison just had a surgical breakout pass to create a breakaway for his team late, but it doesn’t amount to a goal. Team Maatta can’t muster the goals for an equalizer and Kostopoulos’ Team Dumoulin gets the “W”.

• Made it over to the other side of the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex to see Alex D’Orio perform highway robbery on Will Reilly. D’Orio went post-to-post, then back again with his chest up the whole time to make the save look far too easy.

• Team Murray dispatches of Team Guentzel, 8-4.

TEAM DUMOULIN vs. TEAM MURRAY FINAL

• Right from the get-go, Team Dumoulin gets a two-on-one and D’Orio makes a snazzy glove save.

• Man, D’Orio remains busy early. Makes a breakaway save on Renārs Kranstenbergs only to see Krastenbergs fish the rebound out of the corner and deliver a pass to MacKinnon for the Final’s first goal. MacKinnon, a defenseman, continues to go to the net-front and get rewarded for it. 1-0, Team Dumoulin.

• Team Murray trying to turn the tide with its first solid possession of the game. Clayton Phillips set-up nicely, but can’t tickle the twine.

• D’Orio is locked in.

• Eight minutes are left in the first half, and it’s still 1-0, Tom Kostopoulos and Team Dumoulin.

• Big save by D’Orio at one end leads to a goal for Justin Almeida for a tie game. Less than a minute later, Casey Dornbach blows past the defense and splits the wickets to give Team Murray the 2-1 advantage! Not long after, Lewis Zerter-Gossage buries one in a wide-open net. My, oh, my how things have turned. Team Murray goes up 3-1 with four minutes left in the half.

• Almeida has been impressive this week. Wide open three-on-three hockey is doing nothing to conceal his skillset, either.

• Sam Miletic sets up Krastenbergs to give Team Dumoulin some life late in the half, but Team Murray trots right down the ice and gets it right back. 4-2, Team Murray.

HALFTIME THOUGHTS: D’Orio, good. Aleida, good. Miletic, driving play for his team, making some power moves to the front of the net, but hasn’t managed to score in this one.

• It’s quiet.

• Too quiet

• Five minutes go by without much action before Team Dumoulin pulls within one thanks to Jon Lizotte grinding away at the front of the net.

• Nevermind. Team Murray answers quickly again. Harvard’s Zerter-Gossage for the second time tonight, and he gives an animated celebration. 5-3, Team Murray.

• D’Orio is human after all. A little leaker gets past him, and Kostopoulos’ Team Dumoulin has pulled within one with 4:31 left in the second half.

• What’s the best time to pull the goalie when the game is played three-on-three? One minute left? Two minutes? Sooner? Earlier, we saw Team Maatta totally dominate possession with the goalie pulled and skating with a four-on-three advantage. They just didn’t get anything to show for it. Four-on-three gives you a lot more ice to work with then a standard six-on-five extra-attacker situation… I’ll let you contemplate that answer for yourself.

• Before Kostopoulos can pull the goalie, Jeff Malott dances around the O-zone and rips one in. 6-4, Team Murray.

• Now Team Dumoulin gets the extra attacker on with 1:32 left. Too little too late? A lot of really close calls, but no cigar.

• Zerter-Gossage completes the hat trick and brings the game to a 7-4 decision, a championship victory for Team Murray. Clark Donatelli comes out onto the ice with a championship trophy for Zerter-Gossage and co.

PITTSBURGH RE-SIGNS J.S. DEA


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

The two-way deal carries an average annual value of $650,000 at the NHL level.

Dea, 24, saw five NHL games in the 2017-18 regular season with the Penguins, scoring his first career NHL goal on Jan. 23 at PPG Paints Arena against Carolina. His tally went on to be the game-winner. Dea’s NHL debut came the in the Pens’ final regular-season game of the 2016-17 season, on Apr. 9, 2017 at Madison Square Garden against the Rangers, where he logged a career-high 11:18 minutes.

The 5-foot-11, 175-pound native of Laval, Quebec set career highs in assists (32) and points (50) in 70 contests in his fourth season with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton last year, finishing second on the team behind only Daniel Sprong, who led the team in both categories. Dea’s 18 goals tied for the second-highest total of his career. Dea had one assist in three postseason games with the WBS Penguins last year.

Dea has totaled 141 points (66G-75A) in 262 regular-season contests over his four seasons with the WBS Penguins. He has four points (2G-2A) in 22 postseason games with the team.

Dea had 192 points (111G-81A) over three seasons with the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League before going undrafted. The Penguins originally signed Dea as a free agent on Sept. 17, 2013.

2018-19 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Season Ticket Information