PENGUINS WEEKLY – 11/7/17

Penguins post points in seven-straight games

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (7-2-0-1) welcomes Toronto on Wednesday, clash of division leaders

 

Weekly Rewind

Friday, Nov. 3 – PENGUINS at Lehigh Valley
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and Lehigh Valley put on an electrifying show at PPL Center, combining for 10 goals in regulation. At the end of a three-round shootout, the Penguins emerged victorious, 6-5. Ryan Haggerty scored twice for the second consecutive game, while Christian Thomas potted a power play goal and the shootout-deciding tally.

Sunday, Nov. 5 – PENGUINS vs. Hershey
Zach Aston-Reese’s first goal of the season helped the Penguins force overtime, but a shootout loss to the Bears ended Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s six-game winning streak. Daniel Sprong snapped a four-game goalless drought 1:18 into the contest.

The Week Ahead

Wednesday, Nov. 8 – PENGUINS vs. Toronto
For the third year in a row, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and Toronto’s first meeting of the season will serve as a clash between the two top teams in the Eastern Conference. The Marlies have allowed the fewest goals per game this season (2.08) and have triumphed in their last three visits to Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza.

Saturday, Nov. 11 – PENGUINS vs. Providence
The Penguins face-off against the Bruins for the first time since the 2017 Calder Cup Playoffs. After starting the season 6-1-0-0, Providence has dropped three of its last four decisions, including two shutout losses.

Sunday, Nov. 12 – PENGUINS at Hershey
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton makes its first visit of the season to Giant Center for Chocolatetown’s Sunday 5:00 p.m. start time treat. The teams are even with one win apiece in 2017-18, but the Penguins went 4-2-0-0 at Hershey last year.

 

Ice Chips

– Daniel Sprong leads the AHL in power play goals (5) and also tops all league rookies in goals (8), points (12) and shots (43).

– Including the 2016 Calder Cup Playoffs, seven of Sprong’s 13 AHL goals have come on the power play.

– Christian Thomas is on a four-game point streak with the Penguins (2G-3A). Thomas departed for Switzerland on Sunday to join Team Canada for the 2017 Karjala Tournament and Olympic evaluation process.

– Friday marked the first time Ryan Haggerty posted two consecutive multi-goal games in his career.

– Garrett Wilson is four points shy of his 200th pro point.

– Jean-Sébastien Dea is four points shy of 100 AHL points.

– Tom Kostopoulos is two games away from his 700th AHL game.

 

DIVISION STANDINGS

TEAM GP W L OTL SOL PTS Pt%
1. PENGUINS 10 7 2 0 1 15 .750
2. Charlotte 11 8 2 0 0 16 .727
3. Lehigh Valley 13 8 2 0 2 18 .692
4. Providence 11 7 4 0 0 14 .636
5. Bridgeport 11 6 5 0 0 12 .545
6. Hartford 13 5 7 0 1 11 .423
7. Hershey 12 4 6 0 2 10 .417
8. Springfield 13 2 10 1 0 5 .192

 

TEAM LEADERS

SKATERS GP G A PTS
Daniel Sprong* 10 8 4 12
Dominik Simon 10 2 8 10
Jean-Sébastien Dea 10 4 3 7
Christian Thomas 9 3 4 7
Kevin Czuczman 10 0 7 7

 

GOALIES GP W-L-OT GAA SV% Shutouts
Casey DeSmith 5 4-0-1 1.91 .936 1
Tristan Jarry^ 5 3-2-0 3.18 .897 0

* = rookie
^ = currently with Pittsburgh

UPCOMING GAME SCHEDULE

DATE                 OPPONENT      LOCATION                           TIME    

Wed, Nov. 8     Toronto              Mohegan Sun Arena           7:05 p.m.

Sat, Nov. 11       Providence        Mohegan Sun Arena           7:05 p.m.

Sun, Nov. 12     Hershey             Giant Center                         5:00 p.m.

 

RECENT TRANSACTIONS

Mon, Oct. 30      (G)     Casey DeSmith               Reassigned by PIT

Mon, Oct. 30      (G)     Tristan Jarry                        Recalled by PIT

PENGUINS WEEKLY – 10/31/17

Penguins carry five-game win streak into rivalry weekend

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (6-2-0-0) set for state supremacy skirmish

 

Weekly Rewind

Friday, Oct. 27 – PENGUINS 3 vs. Hershey 2
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton saw its I-81 rival erase a 2-0 deficit, but Dominik Simon’s third period power play goal gave the Penguins their fourth-straight win. Tristan Jarry turned aside 30 shots and stood tall amidst a late-game barrage from the Bears. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton also scored its first extra attacker goal of the season when Jean-Sébastien Dea found the back of the net during a delayed penalty in the first period.

Saturday, Oct. 28 – PENGUINS 5 at Bridgeport 2
The Penguins saw multi-point nights from a handful of players, but perhaps no performance was more key than that of Ryan Haggerty, who notched two tallies in his first game of 2017-18. Adam Johnson also scored his first goal as a pro while Jarry earned the “W” in back-to-back starts for the team’s fifth in a row.

 

The Week Ahead

Friday, Nov. 3 – PENGUINS at Lehigh Valley
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton fell in its last visit to PPL Center, but still owns a daunting 13-4-1-1 all-time record in Allentown. The Phantoms recently saw a six-game winning streak come to an end, but their high-flying forward Danick Martel leads the league with 10 goals. Through two contests this season, the Penguins and Phantoms are deadlocked at 1-1-0-0 records.

Sunday, Nov. 5 – PENGUINS vs. Hershey
The Penguins return to home ice for a Sunday matinée with the Bears. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton is 13-6-0-0 in its last 19 games against Hershey, but 11 of those games were decided by a one-goal margin. This match-up will take place during the Penguins’ first-ever Harry Potter Day and is also a Kids Get In Free Sunday. Children aged 14 and under receive free admission to the game with the paid purchase of an adult ticket.

 

Ice Chips

– Daniel Sprong leads the AHL in power play goals (5) and is tied for the rookie lead in goals (7) and points (10).

– Including the 2016 Calder Cup Playoffs, seven of Sprong’s 12 AHL goals have come on the power play.

– Dominik Simon is currently on a four-game point streak (1G-4A).

– Saturday was Jean-Sébastien Dea’s 200th AHL game and thus his 200th game with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. He is the 29th player in team history to skate in 200 games with the Penguins.

– Saturday was Ryan Haggerty’s third multi-goal game with the Penguins and the fifth of his pro career.

– Tom Kostopoulos is two games away from his 700th AHL game.

 

DIVISION STANDINGS

TEAM GP W L OTL SOL PTS Pt%
1. Providence 8 6 2 0 0 12 .883
2. PENGUINS 8 6 2 0 0 12 .786
3. Lehigh Valley 10 7 2 0 1 15 .714
4. Charlotte 9 6 3 0 0 12 .667
5. Hartford 10 4 5 0 1 9 .500
6. Hershey 9 3 5 0 1 7 .333
7. Bridgeport 8 3 5 0 0 6 .250
8. Springfield 10 1 8 1 0 3 .143

 

TEAM LEADERS

SKATERS GP G A PTS
Daniel Sprong* 8 7 3 10
Dominik Simon 8 2 7 9
Christian Thomas 8 2 4 6
Kevin Czuczman 8 0 5 5
four players tied 5

 

GOALIES GP W-L-OT GAA SV% Shutouts
Casey DeSmith 3 3-0-0 0.98 .965 1
Tristan Jarry^ 5 3-2-0 3.18 .897 0

* = rookie

^ = currently with Pittsburgh

 

UPCOMING GAME SCHEDULE

DATE                 OPPONENT        LOCATION                           TIME    

Fri, Nov. 3          Lehigh Valley      PPL Center                            7:05 p.m.

Sun, Nov. 5       Hershey               Mohegan Sun Arena           3:05 p.m.

 

RECENT TRANSACTIONS

Mon, Oct. 23      (G)     Casey DeSmith                     Recalled by PIT

Wed, Oct. 25      (G)     Colin Stevens                         Signed to PTO

Mon, Oct. 30      (G)     Casey DeSmith               Reassigned by PIT

Mon, Oct. 30      (G)     Tristan Jarry                           Recalled by PIT

PENGUINS WEEKLY – 10/24/17

Penguins sweep weekend with two wins past regulation

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (4-2-0-0) used overtime to beat Laval and a shootout to dispatch of Hartford

 

Weekly Rewind

Friday, Oct. 20 – PENGUINS 6 vs. Laval 5  OT
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton emerged victorious in its first-ever meeting with Laval in thrilling fashion. Daniel Sprong netted his first AHL hat trick, but it was the overtime goal by Teddy Blueger that sent the Penguins home with their third victory of the season. Tristan Jarry saved 28 out of 33 shots he faced to earn his first win of the season.

Saturday, Oct. 21 – PENGUINS 3 vs. Hartford 2
The Penguins rallied back from a two-goal deficit to force overtime and won the best-of-three shootout on a lone goal by Jean Sébastien Dea. Gage Quinney extended his goal-streak to three games with a goal in the first period. Jarrett Burton’s first of the year tied the game on a bar-down slap shot. Casey DeSmith improved to 3-0-0 on the season.

 

The Week Ahead

Friday, Oct. 27 – PENGUINS vs. Hershey
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton will try to extend its winning streak to four games when it welcomes the Hershey Bears to Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza for the first of 12 meetings this season. The Bears are off to an uncharacteristically slow start to the season (1-4-0-1) and have given up the most goals per game in the AHL (4.50).

Saturday, Oct. 28 – PENGUINS at Bridgeport
Bridgeport finished 25-13-0-0 at home last season, and are looking to make it two-straight victories on home ice when it welcomes the Penguins for the first time this season. The Pens went 5-0-1-0 in their season series with the Sound Tigers last year, outscoring them 23-12. However, Bridgeport has added the scoring prowess of rookie Scott Eansor to its arsenal, who is tied with Daniel Sprong for the AHL lead in goals.

 

Ice Chips

– Daniel Sprong’s five-game goal streak tied Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s franchise record for goal streak to start a season, set by Tomáš Surový in 2003.

– Sprong leads the AHL in power play goals (5), is tied for the league lead in goals (7) and shots (29), and is tied for second in points (10).

– Including the 2016 Calder Cup Playoffs, seven of Sprong’s 12 AHL goals have come on the power play.

– Casey DeSmith still has not allowed a goal at even strength this season, a streak that has lasted 117:45.

– Tom Kostopoulos is three games away from his 700th AHL game.

 

DIVISION STANDINGS

TEAM GP W L OTL SOL PTS Pt%
1. Providence 6 5 1 0 0 10 .883
2. Lehigh Valley 7 5 1 0 1 11 .786
3. Charlotte 7 5 2 0 0 10 .714
4. PENGUINS 6 4 2 0 0 8 .667
5. Hartford 7 3 3 0 1 7 .500
6. Bridgeport 6 2 4 0 0 4 .333
7. Hershey 6 1 4 0 1 3 .250
8. Springfield 7 1 6 0 0 2 .143

 

TEAM LEADERS

SKATERS GP G A PTS
Daniel Sprong* 6 7 3 10
Gage Quinney* 3 3 2 5
Dominik Simon 6 1 4 5
Lukas Bengtsson* 6 0 5 5
Kevin Czuczman 6 0 5 5

 

GOALIES GP W-L-OT GAA SV% Shutouts
Casey DeSmith^ 3 3-0-0 0.98 .965 1
Tristan Jarry 3 1-2-0 3.96 .883 0

* = rookie
^ = currently with Pittsburgh

 

UPCOMING GAME SCHEDULE

DATE                    OPPONENT     LOCATION                            TIME    

Fri, Oct. 27           Hershey            Mohegan Sun Arena             7:05 p.m.

Sat, Oct. 28         Bridgeport        Webster Bank Arena             7:00 p.m.

 

RECENT TRANSACTIONS

Tue, Oct. 17         (D)     Chris Summers               Reassigned by PIT

Thu, Oct. 19        (D)     Zach Trotman                       Recalled by PIT

Mon, Oct. 23      (G)     Casey DeSmith                    Recalled by PIT

 

PENGUINS STAND TALL OVER DEVILS, 6-2

BOXSCORE

WILKES-BARRE, Pa. – The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins rode an explosive first period to a 6-2 victory over the Binghamton Devils in preseason action at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza on Friday night.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton racked up four goals in the first 20 minutes of play and saw multi-point nights from six different players en route to its first win of the exhibition schedule.

Garrett Wilson wasted little time kicking off the Penguins’ scoring onslaught, taking a behind-the-

back, no-look pass from Tom Kostopoulos and depositing it into the Devils’ net at 5:36 of the first period. Kostopoulos earned a goal of his own during a five-on-three power play at 11:53 of the first, and Adam Johnson made it 3-0 just one minute later.

Binghamton responded with a man advantage marker from Jan Mandát at 15:11 of the opening frame, but Wilkes-Barre/Scranton got back out to a three-goal lead when Zach Trotman’s slapshot snuck through Scott Wedgewood’s goaltending equipment and across the goal line 49 seconds prior to intermission.

The Penguins’ Dominik Simon and the Devils’ Nathan Bastian traded goals during the second period, bringing the score to 5-2.

Kevin Czuczman notched the final goal of the game midway through the third period.

Tristan Jarry denied the Devils on 15 of the 17 shots he faced, while Wedgewood made 24 saves in the loss.

The Penguins’ next preseason game is tomorrow Saturday, Sept. 30, when they take on the Hershey Bears at Giant Center. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton opens up the regular season on Saturday, Oct. 7 at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza against the Charlotte Checkers. Individual tickets for all Penguins home games are available at the Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza box office, online at TicketMaster.com, or by calling 800-745-3000.

Season ticket packages for the 19th season of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins hockey, including full season22-game12-game and Flexbook plans, are available by contacting the Penguins directly at (570) 208-7367.

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

PENGUINS REVEAL 2017 TRAINING CAMP ROSTER & SCHEDULE

WILKES-BARRE, Pa. – The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins announced today the schedule and roster for their 2017 training camp. Players will report to camp on Saturday, Sept. 23 and begin on-ice sessions the following day at 10:30 a.m. at the Toyota SportsPlex at Coal Street.

The Penguins’ initial training camp roster consists of 28 players: 17 forwards, eight defensemen and three goalies.

Player Pos. Height Weight Birthday (Age) Birthplace
BOURBONNAIS, Riley C L 5’11” 195 8/8/1993 (24) Rochester, NY
BURTON, Jarrett C L 6’0″ 190 12/30/90 (26) Echo Bay, ON
BROWN, Cam C L 5’7″ 156 3/25/1993 (24) Natick, MA
FEJES, Hunter LW L 6’1″ 192 5/31/1994 (23) Anchorage, AK
FICK, Danny D R 6’0” 200 8/21/1991 (26) Marine on Saint Croix, MN
GARDINER, Reid RW R 5’11” 180 1/19/1996 (21) Humboldt, SK
HAGGERTY, Ryan RW R 6’0” 200 3/4/1993 (24) Stamford, CT
JOSEPHS, Troy C L 6’0″ 194 5/9/1994 (23) Whitby, ON
KOSTOPOULOS, Tom RW R 6’0” 197 1/24/1979 (38) Mississauga, ON
LEAVENS, Daniel C R 6’2″ 200 6/26/1993 (24) Toronto, ON
McGRATH, Pat RW R 5’10” 200 3/17/1993 (24) Wilkes-Barre, PA
MELE, Tom LW L 6’0″ 176 2/23/1986 (31) Bronx, NY
MILAN, Dan D L 6’3” 190 4/14/1992 (25) Detroit, MI
O’DONNELL, Shawn RW R 6’1″ 192 5/28/1988 (29) Halifax, NS
PARIZEK, Justin RW R 6’1″ 200 6/5/1992 (25) Lakeville, MN
PETGRAVE, Matt D L 6’2” 195 1/29/1992 (25) Brampton, ON
QUINNEY, Gage C L 5’11” 190 7/29/1995 (22) Las Vegas, NV
RYAN, Kenny RW R 6’0″ 209 7/10/1991 (26) Franklin, MI
SCHULZE, Kevin D L 5’10” 174 4/29/1993 (24) White Bear Lake, MN
SKUDALSKI, Craig D L 6’6” 215 5/25/1995 (22) Wyoming, PA
SORKIN, Nick LW L 6’3″ 209 6/3/1991 (26) Rockville, MD
SPINOZZI, Kevin D L 6’2” 200 5/23/1996 (21) Granby, QC
TAYLOR, Jeff D R 6’0” 185 4/13/1994 (23) Clifton Park, NY
WYDO, Cody LW L 5’11” 185 3/28/1991 (26) Allen Park, MI
ZINK, Dylan D L 6’0” 180 10/8/1992 (24) Madison, WI
Goalie Catches Height Weight Birthday (Age) Birthplace
MAGUIRE, Sean R 6’2” 202 2/2/1993 (24) Powell River, BC
KING, Will L 6’3” 196 6/13/1994 (23) Valencia, PA
STEVENS, Colin L 6’2” 181 6/30/1993 (24) Niskayuna, NY

 

Like in years past, all practices at Toyota SportsPlex are free and open to the public. The full training camp schedule is as follows:

Saturday, Sept. 23    
5:00 p.m. Intro Meeting Toyota SportsPlex
5:30 p.m. Physicals
Sunday, Sept. 24
10:30 a.m. Practice Toyota SportsPlex
Monday, Sept. 25
10:30 a.m. Practice Toyota SportsPlex
Tuesday, Sept. 26
10:30 a.m. Practice Toyota SportsPlex
Wednesday, Sept. 27
10:00 a.m. Pre-Game Skate Mohegan Sun Arena
7:05 p.m. Game vs. Hershey Bears
Thursday, Sept. 28  
10:00 a.m. Group A Practice  Mohegan Sun Arena
11:30 a.m. Group B Practice  Mohegan Sun Arena
Friday, Sept. 29
10:00 a.m. Pre-Game Skate Mohegan Sun Arena
7:05 p.m. Game vs. Binghamton Devils
Saturday, Sept. 30
10:00 a.m. Pre-Game Skate Mohegan Sun Arena
7:00 p.m. Game at Hershey Bears
Sunday, Oct. 1
10:30 a.m. Practice Mohegan Sun Arena
5:00 p.m. Game at Binghamton Devils

* – Players assigned to Group A and Group B will be determined the day of practice.
** – All dates and times subject to change

The Penguins take the ice for their first preseason game when they host the Binghamton Devils at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza on Wednesday, Sept. 27 at 7:05 p.m. The Penguins will battle the Hershey Bears in their second home contest of the exhibition schedule on Friday, Sept. 29 at 7:05 p.m.

Individual tickets for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton home games can be purchased at the Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza box office, through all Ticketmaster outlets, or by contacting the Penguins offices at (570) 208-7367.

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.

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

PITTSBURGH ASSIGNS SEVEN TO WILKES-BARRE

The Pittsburgh Penguins have re-assigned eight players, it was announced today by executive vice president and general manager Jim Rutherford.

Forwards Tom Kostopoulos, Ryan Haggerty, Reid Gardiner, Gage Quinney; defensemen Dylan Zink and Jeff Taylor; and goaltender Sean Maguire have all been re-assigned to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins of the American Hockey League.

Forward Jordy Bellerive, an 18-year-old undrafted free agent who signed his entry-level contract with Pittsburgh during training camp, has been returned to his junior club, the Lethbridge Hurricanes of the Western Hockey League.

The Penguins have 47 players remaining in camp (28 forwards; 15 defensemen; 4 goalies). Attached is an updated roster.

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

KOSTOPOULOS STILL GETTING ENJOYMENT OUT OF THE GAME


Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins fans weren’t the only ones left with sour tastes in their mouths after the team was ousted in the first round of the playoffs by the Providence Bruins.

The club’s captain was equally as upset, if not more so.

“I think the way it ended was kind of disappointing,” said Tom Kostopoulos.  “We had a great regular season.  It was something to finish in first place [in the AHL], with all of the changes and movement on the team this year.  Then to go out in the first round was kind of disappointing.

“I didn’t want to leave the game that way.”

The franchise’s all-time lead in just about every offensive category, Kostopoulos signed a one-year contract on Monday to return to the Penguins for what will be his 19th season of professional hockey.

And if he had his way, the 2017-18 season would be starting today.

“It’s boring right now,” said Kostopoulos as he stood in an empty locker room at the Toyota Sportsplex on Monday morning.  “I like coming to the rink every day.  I like being around the guys and being around the sport.  So I’m happy to be signed and playing another year.”

Kostopoulos is coming off of one of the best seasons in his long and storied career.  The most senior member of the Penguins led the team in goals (24) and points (54) this past season, his highest single-season totals in more than a decade.

“I felt pretty good about my regular season,” recounted Kostopoulos, who has appeared in 149 of 152 regular season games with the club over the past two seasons.  “I was kind of disappointed with my personal playoffs.  So I think both of those played a part about coming back here.

“But for the most part I had fun. I think I can still compete at this level, and I still enjoy it.”

Kostopoulos’ accomplishments are well documented across the hockey world:

  • He’s one of just four players to appear in 600 games at both the NHL and AHL levels.
  • He captained the Eastern Conference squad at the 2015 AHL All-Star Classic.
  • He was named the 2016 recipient of the AHL’s Fred T. Hunt Memorial Award, for sportsmanship, determination and dedication to hockey
  • This past season he recorded his 200th AHL goal and 500th AHL point.

And after his club captured the Atlantic Division, Eastern Conference and AHL regular season championships this year, about the only significant piece of hardware eluding Kostopoulos is a Calder Cup.

Laying claim to the AHL’s ultimate trophy is important to the Mississauga, Ontario native.  But it isn’t the only reason he’s sticking around with the Penguins.

“I’d like to win,” he said.  “[But] I don’t want to put everything on that, because there’s a lot more things going on here.

“A big part of this team is moving guys up to the next level and developing guys.  A championship would be huge and that would be great.  But it’s not the only thing.”

During the past several seasons, Kostopoulos has played a big part in helping to develop a bumper crop of Pittsburgh regulars, including Conor Sheary, Bryan Rust, Tom Kuhnhackl, Carter Rowney and Jake Guentzel.

“I really get a kick out of it, watching guys excel in Pittsburgh now that were in Wilkes-Barre at one time,” he said.  “I feel like half of that Pittsburgh team developed here in Wilkes-Barre.  So it’s neat to see that.”

And at the ripe old age of 38, Kostopoulos is looking forward to helping yet another crew of youngsters – including Zach Aston-Reese, Troy Josephs and Teddy Blueger, to name just a few – achieve their dreams of playing in the NHL.

“I think it’s important to have a fun atmosphere here.  Have an atmosphere where the guys can develop and move up and guys are learning,” he said. “With that, we’ll try to win again next year.”


Season ticket packages for the 2017-18 season are on sale now, and available by calling the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins at 570-208-7367.

To have a Penguins representative contact you with more information, please fill out the form below.

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

KOSTOPOULOS HAS BLESSING FROM BOTH FAMILIES FOR RETURN


The numbers are too daunting to ignore. Tom Kostopoulos, at 38-years old, racked up 24 goals, 54 points and played in 74 games for the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins this past season.

All of those figures led the team.

However, when Kostopoulos was contemplating on whether or not to return for the 2017-18 campaign, it wasn’t all about the stats. Kostopoulos’ family weighs in on the decision just as heavily on his mind as his on-ice performance.

Clearly, he has their blessing to play a 19th season of pro hockey,

“I think if it didn’t work for them, I would hang ‘em up,” Kostopoulos said. “But they’re all for it, and that keeps it fun for me.”

Kostopoulos’ wife, Lisa, and children, Lily and Luc, are often seen around Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza and the Penguins practice facility at the  Toyota SportsPlex during the season. For the kids, there hasn’t been a time in their lives when dad wasn’t playing hockey. Even though a life around the rink has become status quo for them, he still seeks their opinion and wants to know how they feel about living half their years in Canada and the other half in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

“When we’re here, we’re keeping our kids away from their grandparents and a lot of their friends, too,” Kostopoulos said. “I also try and explain to them that this lifestyle gives me time with them most afternoons, although I miss a lot of their sports games and activities on the weekends when [the Penguins] play. I get most weeknights with then, I can pick them up from school and stuff like that, but when hockey ends, that can change.”

All of these factors play into Kostopoulos and his family’s thought process when they sat down to discuss what the next step for him was going to be. A verdict was met, and now Lily and Luc will be seen hanging around with their dad after games for at least one more year.

The family isn’t the only one that grabs Kostopoulos’ attention, either. When he’s not at home, Kostopoulos is spending serious quality time forming bonds with his teammates. Hard practices, long bus rides and grinding through three-in-threes with one another fosters another family atmosphere for the Penguins’ captain.

Tom Sestito said after Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s final playoff game that he’d be in Kostopoulos’ ear to try and convince him to come back. Barry Goers claimed that whenever someone presses for an answer on Kostopoulos’ future, the veteran has “one of the best poker faces” around. Those two and many others got a chance to make their pitch to T.K. before everyone dispersed for the summer.

“Once our season was over, we got together a few times as a team. Tom was in my ear a little bit, and some of the other guys were saying why quit now? My teammates’ perspective weighs a lot in my decision.

“If they were looking at me like, ‘Eh, maybe it’s time to go,’ I’d probably give it up. But it’s great to have their support.”

So with the support of his two families, Kostopoulos made it official on Monday morning that he’d be returning for another year with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. The challenge now becomes waiting for his 19th season to start.

“It’s boring right now, now that hockey’s over,” he lamented. “I like coming to the rink every day, I like being around the guys and being around the sport. I’m happy to be signed to back.”


Season ticket packages for the 2017-18 season are on sale now, and available by calling the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins at 570-208-7367.

To have a Penguins representative contact you with more information, please fill out the form below.

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

KOSTOPOULOS RETURNS FOR 19th PRO SEASON

Tom Kostopoulos is the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins all-time leader in regular season games played (627), goals (181), assists (269) and points (450).

The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins have re-signed forward Tom Kostopoulos to an American Hockey League contract for the 2017-18 season, it was announced on Monday morning.

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Kostopoulos enters his 19th season of professional hockey and 11th year with the Penguins organization. The 38-year-old native of Mississauga, Ontario had his most productive season in a decade in 2016-17, leading Wilkes-Barre/Scranton in goals (24), points (54) and games played (74). His 24 goals were the most he’d scored with the Penguins since his 27 tallies during the 2001-02 season.

A six-time captain for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, Kostopoulos is the club’s all-time leader in games played (627), goals (181), assists (269) and points (450).  He is also first in the Penguins’ postseason rankings with 91 games played, 23 goals, 44 assists and 67 points.

Since beginning his pro career in 1999-2000 as a member of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins inaugural team, Kostopoulos has played in 1321 regular season matches between the AHL and National Hockey League. On Mar. 6, 2016, Kostopoulos played his 600th career AHL game, making him the fourth player in hockey history to reach both 600 NHL games and 600 AHL games.

On Jan. 28, 2017, Kostopoulos became the 91st player in AHL history to reach 500 career points, and on Feb. 4, 2017, he became the 14th player in league history to have played in 600 games with one club.

In 630 NHL games with the Pittsburgh Penguins, Los Angeles Kings, Montréal Canadiens, Carolina Hurricanes, Calgary Flames and New Jersey Devils, Kostopoulos has totaled 61 goals, 96 assists, 157 points and 723 penalty minutes.

Kostopoulos was originally drafted by Pittsburgh in the seventh round (204th overall) of the 1999 NHL Entry Draft.


Season ticket packages for the 2017-18 season are on sale now, and available by calling the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins at 570-208-7367.

To have a Penguins representative contact you with more information, please fill out the form below.

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

SESTITO LEADS KOSTOPOULOS APPRECIATION SOCIETY


There’s no way around it. Tom Sestito is a one of a kind individual.

His wit is sharper than an infomercial knife set and his verbal barbs come quicker than a swarm of angry yellow jackets. He’ll let you know exactly what he’s thinking at any time, and his unapologetic brazenness only adds to the big man’s charm.

You could travel all around the world for 10 years and never meet another Tom Sestito.

The Rome, N.Y. native has been a part of four different organizations over the course of his 10-year career, played for four different NHL teams, four different AHL teams, and even spent time overseas in the United Kingdom’s pro hockey league. He’s seen a lot. He’s never seen anyone like Tom Kostopoulos.

“He’s the best captain I’ve had in pro hockey,” Sestito said. “I’ve had a lot of captains and I’ve been on a lot of teams, too. He’s the best.”

Sestito, a one in a millions personality himself, is always appreciative of the unique attributes that personify his teammates. That’s why he’s going to be trying his hardest to tilt Kostopoulos’ offseason decision on his playing future back towards a return with the black and gold.

“Oh, I’ll be in his ear trying to get him to play another year,” Sestito said. “There’s no doubt about it. Hopefully, I’m back here too, but you can’t say enough about the guy.”

While Kostopoulos’ future is still unknown at this point, Sestito brings up the fact that he’s not exactly a sure thing to return either. An unrestricted free agent this summer, the 29-year-old forward has his pick of the litter when it comes to where he’ll play next. That list isn’t limited to the NHL and AHL either, mind you. Europe always remains a viable option to these players, as well.

Sestito doesn’t anticipate flipping through many brochures, though. Speaking his mind as always, he’s made it very clear that he’d want to return to the Penguins organization

“This has been my favorite place to play. The way they handle your family, my wife, my kid, it’s been great. It’s been home. It’s a first class organization.

“As an older guy, I don’t like waiting too long. Hopefully, we can get to it and get something ironed out.”

While the rest of us have no choice but to wait and see what his next move is, there’s one certainty he’s shown Penguins fans through his first two seasons with the team: You’ll never be left waiting for a response from Tom Sestito, no matter the subject.


Season ticket packages for the 2017-18 season are on sale now, and available by calling the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins at 570-208-7367.

To have a Penguins representative contact you with more information, please fill out the form below.

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