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Doug Wilson Joins Penguins Front Office

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Credit: Hockey Shots/Dean Tait

For the first time in 32 years, Doug Wilson is associated with an NHL team that isn’t the San Jose Sharks.

Earlier today, Pittsburgh Penguins president of hockey operations and GM Kyle Dubas announced the addition of Wilson as Senior Advisor of Hockey Operations.

According to the Penguins’ press release, “Wilson will provide counsel, opinions and expertise to hockey operations leadership on all matters including personnel decisions. He will join the team at home and on the road at various points during the season and offseason, and will provide guidance and mentorship to all levels of hockey operations.”

In 1991, the future Hall of Fame defenseman was dealt from the Chicago Blackhawks, where he won the Norris Trophy in 1982, to the expansion San Jose Sharks. After two injury-plagued campaigns, Wilson retired in 1993.

After retirement, Wilson worked with the NHLPA and Hockey Canada. In 1997, Wilson re-joined the Sharks as Director of Player Personnel and Professional Development. Six years later, he was named GM.

In two decades as San Jose GM, the Sharks went to five Conference Finals (2004, 2010, 2011, 2016, 2019) and one Stanley Cup Final in 2016. In 14 of his first 15 seasons as GM, San Jose qualified for the playoffs.

The Sharks, however, have missed four-straight post-seasons, three of them helmed, at least in part, by Wilson. In Nov. 2021, Wilson announced that he was taking medical leave from the franchise, and that April, he officially stepped down at GM.

This past summer, reports were that the 66-year-old’s health was improving, and that he was interested in returning to an NHL front office. In the meantime, however, Mike Grier was selected as San Jose Sharks GM, and Wilson himself had passed the torch to Grier earlier in the 2022-23 season.

Wilson on His Health, Mike Grier, Being Honored by Sharks

“Doug brings over 40 years of NHL experience to our program. Over 16 years from his Hall-of-Fame playing career and over 25 seasons building consistent contending teams as the leader of the San Jose Sharks hockey operations department,” Dubas said. “Doug will serve as a source of both experience and wisdom to our entire hockey operations department. His ability to maintain high standards of performance and professionalism over two decades with Sharks is the type of consistency we all aspire to these positions. Doug will provide me and our entire program with a great resource and tremendous benefit as we get rolling. I am excited to add Doug to our management team today.”

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