Simon Despres D PIT 19 Days

Despres currently slots into Pittsburgh's defensive unit as part of a third-pairing with Rob Scuderi.

Despres may only have a two-week window or so with Robert Bortuzzo on the mend from an undisclosed injury. The former first-round draft pick has shown flashes of skill in the AHL -- he had 23 points in 36 games last year -- but that offense hasn't translated into production at the NHL level. Pittsburgh has a number of blue line prospects behind Despres, making October a very important month for the defender.

Simon Despres D PIT 28 Days

Despres chipped in with a pair of assists and a fighting major Thursday against the Wild.

He's finally away from Dan Bylsma and could be given a better chance to show what he can do in 2014-15. Despres is slated to serve as the team's sixth or seventh defenseman, but more nights like Thursday figure to boost his stock with a new head coach and general manager.

Simon Despres D PIT 3 Months

Simon Despres has inked a two-year, $1.8 million contract with the Pittsburgh Penguins.

It appears Despres' deal is one-way and if that's the case then he's a safe bet to make the team's opening game roster. He had five assists and 26 penalty minutes in 34 games with Pittsburgh in 2013-14.

Simon Despres D PIT 4 Months

Simon Despres will get a chance to crack the Pittsburgh lineup for the 2014-15 season.

Despres was not a favorite of the recently-fired head coach Dan Bylsma and with Matt Niskanen, Deryk Engelland and Brooks Orpik unlikely to return to the Pittsburgh lineup, the former first round pick will be given every opportunity to win a job on the Penguins blueline. "Without a doubt," associate GM Jason Botterill said. "You saw how he played in the playoffs in Wilkes-Barre. It was a great step in the right direction. He went down there with a better attitude. He was very physical. I think he enjoyed playing. It's been a difficult situation for our defensemen because of the depth that we have."

Simon Despres D PIT 6 Months

Simon Despres has been sent to the minors.

Despres has five assists in 34 games with Pittsburgh in 2013-14. He'll aide AHL Wilkes-Barre/Scranton in its playoff run.

Simon Despres D PIT 7 Months

Simon Despres was a healthy scratch against the Chicago Blackhawks S.unday

Just an FYI. He has five assists in 31 games this season, as well as a plus-five rating.

Simon Despres D PIT 7 Months

Simon Despres was a healthy scratch on Sunday.

The Penguins decided to dress Robert Bortuzzo instead and he earned an assist in Pittsburgh's 4-3 loss. Despres hasn't picked up a point in his last 12 NHL outings.

Simon Despres D PIT 8 Months

Simon Despres might stick with the Penguins for the remainder of the 2013-14 campaign.

Despres was called up largely because Kris Letang and Paul Martin are both sidelined, but the Penguins are also upbeat about how he's done in the minors this season. "His play in the American league speaks for itself," Penguins assistant coach Todd Reirden. "He's gone down with a great attitude and a commitment to playing Penguins hockey. All the reports - and we've had quite a few of them during the Olympic break - were very strong for him to be the first guy who gets called up here." Despres has six goals and 22 points in 34 AHL games.

Simon Despres D PIT 8 Months

The Pittsburgh Penguins have recalled Simon Despres from the minors.

The Pens are hurting on the blueline yet again as Kris Letang is out after suffering a stroke and Paul Martin was injured at the Olympics. Despres had four points in 18 NHL games during a previous stint this season in Pittsburgh but we cannot recommend him at this time.

Simon Despres D PIT 9 Months

Demoted defenseman Simon Despres is still in the future plans of the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Despres was demoted when defensemen Paul Martin, Kris Letang and Robert Scuderi returned to action, giving the Pens too many blueliners. "Where he is right now, in terms of his career, he's in a good spot," GM Ray Shero said. "In terms of the progression he's made and his maturity, on and off the ice, I think that's coming. Even though he's not [in the NHL now], we still believe he's a very good prospect for us and will be an NHL player, for sure." The 22-year-old was the Penguins first round pick and 30th overall in the 2009 Draft.