Spezza joins Dubas in Pittsburgh after leaving Leafs

Jun 14 2023, 2:25 pm

It didn’t take long for Kyle Dubas and Jason Spezza to reunite.

On Wednesday, the Pittsburgh Penguins announced that they have named Spezza as their assistant general manager, the job he held with the Toronto Maple Leafs up until Dubas, the Leafs former GM, was terminated.

The 40-year-old left the Leafs organization on the same day that Dubas was let go as general manager and less than a week after Toronto was ousted from the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Dubas, who is now Pittsburgh’s president of hockey operations, was the one to make the Spezza news public, sharing some kind words about his former Toronto front office colleague in a press release.

“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,” said Dubas.

“He showed tremendous work ethic, curiosity, and ability to build relationships throughout all departments at the team facility. His move from the roster to the front office staff also helped make the hockey operations department, coaching staff and playing roster a more cohesive and collaborative unit.”

Back in April, the Penguins announced the departure of a number of key members of their front office, including former GM Ron Hextall and former president of hockey operations Brian Burke.

Spezza played 1,248 NHL games over 19 seasons and suited up for the Leafs for the last three years of his career. After retiring in 2022, Spezza quickly moved into management, working under Dubas.

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