Dustin Jeffrey, left, and Luca Caputi, right
Wilkes-Barre Scranton Penguins expert Jonathan Bombulie was more than kind enough to lend his insight early last week for the likes of prospects such as Alex Goligoski and Luca Caputi. In today's edition of Citizens Voice, a paper that circulates in the Wilkes-Barre region, Bombulie takes a closer look at Pittsburgh Penguins prospect Dustin Jeffrey.
I do recall last season's prospect camp. All of the hype surrounded guys like Kris Letang, Connor James and Ryan Stone. But by the end of camp there was another name thrown around during prospect recaps and "who's next" predictions. That name was Dustin Jeffrey.
Jeffrey tells Bombulie:
“They told us they weren’t going to take anyone to main camp, so I didn’t have that as a goal. I was just trying to make the best impression I could. It was really exciting. They were calling people in and they were like, ‘Here’s your 30-day visa.’ I was like, ‘Oh.’ They were like, ‘Yep, you’re coming with us.’ It was a really exciting moment.”
This season Jeffrey will make an appearance at camp and once again try to wow the coaching staff. As you can imagine, a roster spot on the Pittsburgh Penguins is much harder to come by then any other team. They are well beyond that rebuilding phase and in turn will less likely take a chance on a younger, unproven guy in a starting role. It's a small price to pay for wanting to play on the Pens, and frankly one that makes each and every prospect skate a little faster, shoot a little harder and breathe a lot heavier knowing that getting upped to the parent club is a privilege well-earned.
Should injuries be a factor this season, Jeffrey strikes me as a player on Therrien's speed dial. As Bombulie predicts in his article, Jeffrey should see some playing time this season on the NHL level if the situation should call for a minor leaguer.