-Happy 23nd birthday to current Penguins defenseman Simon Despres (above). A first-round pick in 2009, Despres has spent parts of the past three seasons with the Penguins. In 2011-12, Despres appeared in 18 games and recorded four points. He played in three playoff games that spring and did not record a point. During the 2012-13 campaign, Despres played in 33 games and scored seven points. He saw action in three playoff games and did not scored a point. This past season, Despres played in 34 games and netted five assists. In 85 career games with the Penguins, Despres has scored 16 points. In six postseason games, he has no points.
-Happy 65th birthday to former Penguins forward Rick Kessell. A second-round pick in 1969, Kessell spent parts of four seasons with the Penguins. From 1969-70 through 1971-72, Kessell appeared in a total of 17 games and scored six points. In 1972-72, Kessell found a way to play in 67 games and scored 14 points. During the 1973 offseason, Kessell was claimed by the California Golden Seals in a reverse draft. In 84 games with the Penguins, Kessell scored 20 points.
-Happy 46th birthday to former Penguins forward Dave Capuano. A second-round pick in 1986, Capuano's Penguins' career amounted to six games in 1989-90. Midway through the season, he was traded to the Canucks along with Andrew McBain and Dan Quinn in exchange for Rod Buskas, Barry Pederson and Tony Tanti.
-Happy 44th birthday to former Penguins defenseman Jason Woolley (right). Acquired along with Stu Barnes early in the 1996-97 season in a deal which sent Chris Wells to the Panthers, Woolley's Penguins career amounted to 57 games and 36 points that season. In the 1997 offseason, he was traded to the Sabres in exchange for draft picks. Woolley is currently an agent.
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-“Barry’s just detailed. It’s simple. Very detailed guy. He’s a big family guy, great family. I think he’s going to make sure we’re going to be close together, close as a unit on and off the ice. But on ice I expect us to be a lot more detailed. You’ll get a sense of that I think right away of guys having to do some homework at times." - Capitals forward Joel Ward on new head coach Barry Trotz. Ward previously played for Trotz with the Predators.
-“We’re going to practice quick and we’re going to practice hard. It’s going to be efficient.” - New Hurricanes coach Bill Peters on how he'll run his team's practices.
-Canadiens defenseman P.K. Subban, currently a restricted free agent, is being mum about his ongoing contract negotiations.
-“The feelings aren’t going to go away — probably never. It’s just something that sticks with you for a long time.” - Sharks forward Logan Couture on his team losing to the Kings in the first round of the postseason despite having a 3-0 series lead.
-The Flames re-signed restricted free agent defenseman Mark Cundari to a one-year two-way contract.
(Photos: Claus Andersen/Getty Images and Penguins Hockey Cards)