Penguins reward winger Ryan Haggerty with NHL deal |
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Jonathan Bombulie
The Penguins’ Ryan Haggerty steals the puck to set himself up for a first-period goal against the Red Wings Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018 at PPG Paints Arena.

When winger Ryan Haggerty arrived at Penguins training camp, an AHL deal in his pocket, his goal was clear.

“I just want to make some noise and give myself the best chance in Wilkes-Barre to get an NHL contract,” Haggerty said.

Mission accomplished.

The Penguins signed Haggerty to a two-year, two-way NHL deal with an average annual salary of $675,000 on Tuesday. He’ll make $100,000 while playing in the AHL.

Haggerty was assigned to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton in a sweeping round of cuts on Sunday, but because he signed the NHL contract, he’ll now have to clear waivers before officially joining the AHL roster.

Haggerty opened eyes with a strong performance in training camp.

He scored clutch goals in two intrasquad scrimmages, then scored twice more in exhibition games.

He had 16 goals and 37 points in 47 games in Wilkes-Barre last season.

A 25-year-old right wing, Haggerty’s best weapon is his shot. He’s not the smoothest or most effortless skater, which is probably why his journey up the hockey ladder has been a difficult one.

“Everyone has their journey,” Haggerty said. “I don’t think anyone has a specific way to get to the NHL or the AHL. I can tell you one thing. It’s been fun to get to play hockey every day. I love doing it.”

Jonathan Bombulie is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jonathan at [email protected] or via Twitter @BombulieTrib.

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