Penguins Cut Ryan Craig, Andrew Hutchinson; Close To Having Final Roster

The Penguins made two more cuts today, assigning forward Ryan Craig and defenseman Andrew Hutchinson to Wilkes-Barre. Both veterans will have to clear waivers, which they’re expected to do, before reporting tomorrow to the AHL.

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The Penguins currently have 14 forwards, eight defensemen and two goaltenders, once they move to put injured center Jordan Staal on the IR. However, Arron Asham sustained a shoulder injury last weekend and has not practiced, and his status remains unknown.

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The NHL maximum roster size is 23, and should the Pens need to place Asham on the IR, they would be at 23.

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Carrying eight defensemen would be unusual (since only six normally play each game), but 19-year-old Simon Despres is expected to play nine games in the NHL before being assigned to his junior team in Quebec. Veterans Ben Lovejoy and Deryk Engelland would have to be placed on waivers if they were cut, so the team may decide to hang on to them and eventually install them as the sixth and seventh defensemen.

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