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Penguins name 2-time All-Star Jason Spezza as assistant general manager

NHL: Vancouver Canucks at Toronto Maple Leafs

Mar 5, 2022; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Maple Leafs center Jason Spezza (19) arrives at the Scotiabank Arena against the Vancouver Canucks. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

PITTSBURGH -- The Pittsburgh Penguins hired two-time NHL All-Star Jason Spezza as assistant general manager.

President of hockey operations Kyle Dubas announced the move. Spezza spent the 2022-23 season working as a special assistant to Dubas when Dubas served as the general manager in Toronto.

The 40-year-old Spezza scored 363 goals during a 19-year NHL career with Ottawa, Dallas and Toronto. He retired in May 2022 and immediately went to work for Dubas. Spezza’s role in Toronto included working inside several departments with the Maples Leafs, including player personnel, player development, minor league operations and hockey research and development.

“After a decorated playing career, Jason fully immersed himself on the management side of the game learning all facets of hockey operations this past season while with Toronto,” Dubas said in a statement. “He showed tremendous work ethic, curiosity, and ability to build relationships throughout all departments at the team facility.”

The Penguins are still searching for a general manager to replace Ron Hextall, who was fired after Pittsburgh failed to reach the playoffs for the first time since 2006. Dubas, hired as director of hockey operations on June 1, said he will serve as the general manager in a temporary capacity and plans to ramp up the hiring process in July.