• Elite Hockey Experience
 

Penguins New GM Brings Breath of Fresh Air

2018-12-04

PITTSBURGH - Entering the 2018-19 season, there was plenty of uncertainty to go around with the Penguins. The team was coming off back to back seasons of underachieving playoff runs despite having solid regular seasons with 40+ wins and a deep run in the 2015-16 playoffs. Couple that with the firing of the previous general manager without hiring a replacement prior to the start of the season, the turmoil surrounding the Penguins couldn't have been any more apparent.

Enter Ian Gurtowski, the brand new general manager, taking over the team which had gotten out to a 3-0 start but has since dropped the last two against Washington and Tampa Bay. Despite this hot and cold start, Gurtowski isn't panicking at all.

"We have a good team here, we've got guys who have put in a lot of work the last few years, Jamie's [Benn] been a big time player for us since day one and that's why he's our captain. When I was brought in, I came in with the mindset to win games and to get this team to win a championship, and I feel that we can do that if we can get back to playing Penguins hockey."

Coming in as a first time GM, the establishment of a relationship between he and the players came about quickly, and he delivered a simple message to the team:

Play well, play hard, and help the team, and you'll keep playing.

GM Gurtowski has made it clear that he is coming in with a "clean slate, no equity" mindset, and giving the players every possible chance to succeed.

"You know I look at a guy like Gibby [Brian Gibbons] who has really worked his tail off the last two years in the AHL and has come in this year and been a point per game guy with limited minutes. You can expect to see him with Jamie and Bo for the next game. Hemmer [Ales Hemsky] is another guy who's been hot for us this year. This is the message I want to send, that we're a team and will work together, but there are also new opportunities and rewards to be had for good, hard play."

There has also been word that Gurtowski has been involved in the trade market since taking over, and I asked for comment on those rumblings.

"*chuckles* You guys will believe anything you hear eh? We're gonna be observing this team and seeing how everyone does. If there 's a move to be made we will explore it, but like I said we're really taking this clean slate, no equity mindset to heart. We want our players to come in and just be themselves and work hard to help the team win."

Sounds like GM Gurtowski has come in with a plan, which fans of this team have been clamoring for and will be pleased to hear. Only time will tell if Gurtowksi can get the team where he wants them to be. Currently sitting second in the division helps, and he made note of that too.

"Second is nice, but we're gunning for the top *chuckles* We're just going to take things one day at a time and our goal is to be a championship team, and that's where I intend to bring them."




Thomas Gidlow

Nice write up sir. :)

Penguins New GM Brings Breath of Fresh Air
Winning Games at the Forefront of Agenda

• 1 teams Like this  9 days
Cole Bates Agreed! Nice job Ian
8 days  2 teams Like this
Martins Auzins

Benn and Horvat leading the way. Almost didn't happen for Pens in the off season. Good call by the league.

Penguins New GM Brings Breath of Fresh Air
Winning Games at the Forefront of Agenda

• 1 teams Like this  10 days
Kirklan Lycar

Nice article dude!!

Penguins New GM Brings Breath of Fresh Air
Winning Games at the Forefront of Agenda

• 1 teams Like this  10 days
Brandyn Errickson

Great read. Welcome to the league!

Penguins New GM Brings Breath of Fresh Air
Winning Games at the Forefront of Agenda

• 1 teams Like this  10 days