Pittsburgh Penguins‘ 3rd round pick in the 2007 draft (#78 overall) defenseman Robert Bortuzzo(15) got his first taste of NHL play with an injury depleted blue line in the final year of his entry level deal.
He suffered a concussion in mid-December on his second recall from the AHL Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins missing a month’s worth of action, but has not appeared in another game with the big club since returning.
At 6’4″ 215 lbs. the 23-year old is a towering presence that isn’t afraid to mix it up anywhere on the ice but still could use another ten pounds of muscle to become a full-time d-man in the show.
It’s likely a no-brainer that he receives a qualifying offer to return for his fourth season in the Penguins‘ system.
Original story: 3/31-12
After appearing in his first 6 games with the big club, being accountable and looking comfortable out there, Pittsburgh rewarded him with another season as the league was heading into its 2nd lockout in less than 10 years.
He would be in the parent club’s training camp when they started playing again and even though it took him a bit to get into the lineup, he eventually made it scoring his first NHL goal in his 2nd game.
The big blue liner would play 15 contests in the shortened season getting 2 goals and 2 assists with a +3 rating only being returned to the farm team for a few days before being recalled to play out the schedule.
Heading into another restricted free agency the Penguins took little time to extend him for another two years and that would signal the end of his time with the farm team.
Over the next two campaigns he would skate in 92 games recording a career high 10 assists and points in 2013/2014 and get two more tallies and 4 helpers for 2014/2015 along with a new best 7 fights.
At the trade deadline, the now 26-year old was traded to St. Louis Blues and quickly signed for another 2-years.
He would finish the season getting in 13 games with a goal and an assist for his new team.