Life moves fast for a youngster in the NHL. 18-year old Owen Pickering heard his name called on Thursday night, snapped some pictures and soaked up the joy and achievement of being selected by an NHL team with the Pittsburgh Penguins. The next day, he was already en route to Pittsburgh. The Pens’ annual summer prospect camp began yesterday and will continue for most of this week.
“I actually walked around backstage, and I was told that I was going to be heading to Pittsburgh the next day,” Pickering said. “So, I hopped on a couple of flights and got here.”
And now Pickering is in town, and was on ice yesterday as the marquee member of the Penguins’ prospect class going through some workouts to get their journeys going.
Pittsburgh head coach Mike Sullivan is among those on the ice, along with Wilkes-Barre coach J.D. Forrest and Pittsburgh’s skills development coach Ty Hennes to lead the instruction.
Along with all of recent 2022 draft picks (aside from fourth round pick goalie Sergey Murashov) joined 11 forwards, eight defensemen and four goaltenders who are Pens’ prospects or undrafted camp invitees. They are:
Sam Houde (UFA)
Max Sasson (UFA)
Aidan Fulp (UFA)
Clay Hanus (UFA)
Tommy Nappier (UFA)
Every player above has a story. Blomqvist is undergoing his mandatory Finnish military training this summer but has been excused to participate this week. Lindberg is coming off an injury that robbed him off of most of his injury. There are plenty of college players involved who get their only pro activity at this event this week. Undrafted players are looking to make their mark and stand out. Several others are recent undrafted signings, and this is the first regular prospect camp since 2019 which means it is the first look for many.
Here’s the schedule for the rest of the week. All on ice activities are open for free to the public.
Monday, July 11
10:45 AM – Goalie On-Ice Session
11:30 AM – Skills Session
12:30 PM – Split Squad
Tuesday, July 12
10:00 AM – Goalie On-Ice Session
10:45 AM – Skills Session
11:45 AM – Split Squad
Wednesday, July 13
10:15 AM – Goalie On-Ice Session
11:00 AM – Practice/Skills Session
12:00 PM – Split Squad
Thursday, July 14
12:00 PM – Scrimmage