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Penguins hire Kirk MacDonald as head coach of AHL Wilkes-Barre/Scranton

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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) - The Penguins President of Hockey Operations Kyle Dubas announced on Wednesday that the team had hired Kirk MacDonald as the next coach of their American Hockey League affiliate, the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. 

The 40-year-old Victoria, British Columbia native comes to the organization with 10 years of coaching experience and most recently was the head coach of the Dubuque Fighting Saints of the United States Hockey League where he spent two seasons. 

As the head coach this past season, he led the Fighting Saints to the USHL Clark Cup Championship and helped the team to a 41-13-8 record in the regular season. 

Prior to his time in the USHL, he spent eight seasons with the Reading Royals of the ECHL, the Philadelphia Flyers AA affiliate, and served in various roles from assistant coach to head coach, and director of hockey operations. 

He began his coaching career at the collegiate level as an assistant coach with RPI in 2013-14. 

MacDonald had a seven-year professional playing career between 2007-2013 and most of that career was spent in the American Hockey League, playing 272 games with Albany, Providence, Iowa, and Houston, scoring 106 points.

The Penguins announced earlier this offseason that they would not renew the contracts of head coach J.D. Forrest as well as assistant coach Kevin Porter.

After failing to qualify for the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the second consecutive season, the Penguins have seen turnover at the coaching position as the big club also relieved assistant coach Todd Reirden of his duties

Last week, they announced the hiring of Dan Quinn as the Penguins' assistant coach. 

The team has not yet announced who will join MacDonald on the bench as assistants. 

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