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Derrick Pouliot and Jake Guentzel were reassigned this afternoon to Wilkes Barre/Scranton. With Guentzel falling out of the lineup with one bad game, it was inevitable he would be sent down this week to get playing time this weekend.
The Pouliot situation takes another twist.
The player is as frustrated as can be and as mentioned on Monday, so are his representatives, league sources say.
Aside from his role, where there’s some contentions has been the Penguins odd handling of Pouliot’s injury.
He was injured on October 20 with the Penguins publicly saying on October 22nd that he was out “long-term.” Pouliot started skating again on Nov 14.
Despite being fully cleared to play in Wilkes Barre and having no setbacks following a conditioning assignment around Thanksgiving, Pouliot was told by the team early last week he still needed to come off long-term injured reserve before he could be an option to play.
Long-term injured reserve is either 10 games or 24 days whether a player has to sit out.
Did the Penguins not add Pouliot to long-term injured reserve until some point in November?
It’s easy to see why the player may feel the team has dragged on his injury for whatever reason.
“I’m not too sure of what the future holds,” Pouliot told Jason Mackey of the Post-Gazette. “We’ll have to see where things go down the road. Trades happen. You never know what could unfold.”
I’m of the camp that Pouliot’s ceiling is nothing more than a third pairing defenseman but the leash an Olli Maatta gets compared to Pouliot who barely gets a sniff to play, has to be extremely frustrating for someone who was the 8th overall pick of the same draft class.