The Pittsburgh Penguins’ jam-packed front office got one person lighter today, as assistant general manager Tom Fitzgerald left to take the same position with the New Jersey Devils.
With the Devils, Fitzgerald will be reunited with his old boss, former Penguins general manager Ray Shero, who is now the GM in New Jersey.
“Ray has been a good friend and mentor of mine for a long time now even going back to my Nashville days with him,” Fitzgerald said to Tom Gulitti of the North Jersey Record. “We just have that respect for one another. Just working with him over the previous seven years, he gave me responsibilities, he didn’t micromanage me. As an employee, you really respect that.”
Fitzgerald was still under contract with the Penguins, who chose not to block his move. Unlike the crowded situation in Pittsburgh (Fitzgerald was one of four assistants to general manager Jim Rutherford), he will be the sole assistant to Shero in New Jersey. The Penguins will not receive any compensation for losing Fitzgerald.
“He is well-respected throughout the league, and I feel that he is an ideal fit for our team,” Shero said in a press release. “I would also like to take this opportunity to thank the Pittsburgh Penguins for their cooperation in allowing Tom to join our organization.”
Fitzgerald should also be familiar with the coaching staff in New Jersey, as head coach John Hynes and assistant coach Alain Nasreddine were both hired from the Penguins’ AHL affiliate this offseason.
With the hiring of Fitzgerald and the departure of longtime GM Lou Lamoniello this week, the Devils have completely revamped their front office and coaching staff from 2014-15.
In his tenure with the Penguins, Fitzgerald held four different positions. He was director of player development, an assistant coach during their Stanley Cup run in 2009, assistant to the general manager and assistant general manager.
Fitzgerald had just finished up directing the Penguins’ prospect development camp last week.
Photo Credit: Pittsburgh Penguins