Steve MacIntyre sat on a bus with his teammates bound for Norfolk, Va., uncertain about his future.
After Monday's morning practice at Coal Street, MacIntyre and his Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguin teammates left for Virginia, where they will play the Admirals tonight. MacIntyre was one of three Penguins – along with goaltenders Brad Thiessen and Jeff Zatkoff -- who had to clear waivers on Monday. While packing his equipment, MacIntyre sat in his locker stall and reflected on the uncertainty of the situation.
After all, there were rumors that Toronto was interested in the veteran enforcer.
I think all they are is rumors, but we'll find out in a while, he said. I hope I stay. I like it here and it's the best organization I ever played for.
But all I can do is wait. It's 24 hours of uncertainty.
Before the team arrived in Norfolk all three Penguin players cleared waivers. Dealing with the uncertainty of waivers is nothing new to MacIntyre, who has been in this situation before during his 12-year pro career.
This time, with a family to consider, he was prepared.
It's a little different now because it's just me and my dog. Before it was me, my wife, three kids, the dog and the cat. The whole operation, MacIntyre said. They stayed home this year just in case something was to happen.
Now that he will remain with the Pittsburgh organization, MacIntyre is still hopeful he'll get another NHL shot and perhaps even reach his goal of playing in 100 games in the big league. He's currently at 90.
And his reputation as one of the most-feared enforcers in hockey just may help him achieve that mark.
Guys might be a little more hesitant, he said. If I can hang onto the puck a little longer and maybe be a little better down low, I can use that to my advantage.
Now, with my reputation as an enforcer and maybe I have that fear factor I have to realize it and take it as a plus.
• Head coach John Hynes confirmed on Monday that some Wilkes-Barre/Scranton players will head to Pittsburgh after tonight's game in Norfolk to participate in Wednesday's Black and Gold scrimmage with the NHL club.
Hynes said Pittsburgh management will be at the Norfolk game to select some players to play in the scrimmage.
I think it's great for the players. They get an opportunity to go up there, get some exposure and be around the locker room. To be on that stage is good for them, Hynes said.
• Hynes didn't know if the suspension of Keven Veilleux in Wheeling means that he won't be able to play in Wilkes-Barre if recalled.
On Sunday, Veilleux was suspended indefinitely after allegedly directing a racial slur toward an opponent.
We haven't talked about it yet. I probably won't be too involved in that, Hynes said, adding that upper management will likely make the call.
• On the injury front, Benn Ferriero practiced on Monday and is questionable for tonight's game. Recent call-up Paul Crowder has been wearing the 14 worn by Tom Kuhnhackl this season.
Hynes said Kuhnhackl, who has been out with a shoulder injury, had surgery and is done for the season.