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Penguins make big front office hire

July 9, 2024, 4:24 PM ET [104 Comments]
Ryan Wilson
Pittsburgh Penguins Blogger • RSSArchiveCONTACT
The Penguins are likely close to done making their player personnel moves for the upcoming season. Today, they shifted focus to adding to the front office staff. The Penguins will be hiring Wes Clark. Where did he come from? I bet you can guess and you’ll have a couple of layup options to choose from. That’s right the Toronto Maple Leafs and formerly the Soo Greyhounds.

Clark will oversee the club’s amateur, professional and college/European free agent scouting departments and will report directly to Dubas.

Clark, 41, has spent the last six seasons in the Toronto Maple Leafs organization, holding various roles with the team. Clark has run the NHL Draft for the Toronto as the Director of Player Personnel (2023-24) and Director of Amateur Scouting (2021-23). He has also served as the Assistant Director of Player Personnel (2018-23) and as a Player Evaluation Consultant (2014-16).

Prior to his time in Toronto, the Oakville, Ontario native spent two seasons with the Florida Panthers as an Amateur Scout from 2016-18. He also was the Director of Player Personnel and Development with the Soo Greyhounds of the Ontario Hockey League from 2011-15.

Dubas didn’t waste any time in hiring Clark as his contract recently expired.

This is a very big hire because the Penguins are definitely shifting their focal point to the future as opposed to the now. They will likely be keeping their own draft picks and acquiring other teams picks via trade. They need this hire to work out. Given the fact Toronto was in a similar win now position as the Penguins Clark has had to navigate each draft year differently. Some have a first rounder and few other picks, other years have a lot of picks and no first rounders, and everywhere in-between. I imagine starting next year he will have a first round pick and quite a number of other selections to be responsible for selecting.

Wes Clark’s ability to do this job is going to have a direct impact on how fast the Penguins can restock the cupboards with playable and cheap NHL talent, which would get them back to actually competing faster. We won’t know for a few years how it goes.

Thanks for reading!
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