After Bill Guerin decided to take a job with the Minnesota Wild earlier this month, the Pittsburgh Penguins were not only left without an assistant GM but the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins of the AHL were without a GM at all. No longer, as the organization has named Mike Vellucci GM of the AHL club in addition to his head coaching role. Vellucci performed the same double-duty with the Charlotte Checkers previously.
Last season in Charlotte, Vellucci and the Checkers took home the Calder Cup as league champions after slowly building to become one of the most stable and successful franchises in the league. The affiliate for the Carolina Hurricanes has produced near countless NHL players over the last several years, thanks at least in part to Vellucci’s work on the development side as well as behind the bench.
When he left the Hurricanes organization earlier this year it came as no surprise that Vellucci returned to an organization led by Jim Rutherford, given the two have history going back decades. Vellucci will now attempt to get the WBS Penguins back to the playoffs after the franchise missed the postseason for the first time in more than 15 years.