Pens hire Donatelli to replace Sullivan as AHL coach

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On Tuesday, Pittsburgh announced that longtime minor league coach Clark Donatelli has been named the new bench boss of its AHL affiliate in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.

Donatelli, 50, takes over for Mike Sullivan, who was promoted to head coach with the Penguins after Mike Johnston was fired on Dec. 12.

“Clark Donatelli brings a wealth of head coaching experience and has been with the organization for five years,” Pens assistant GM Jason Botterill said, per the club’s website. “Donatelli has helped develop 11 players in [ECHL] Wheeling that are currently on the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton roster.

“Coach Donatelli and Associate Coach Jay Leach will make a dynamic team that will continue the path set by Mike Sullivan.”

Leach was the interim head coach following Sullivan’s move to the parent club.

A former NHLer with Minnesota and Boston, Donatelli was the coach in Wheeling for the last four seasons. He was the only coach in Nailers history to take the team to consecutive playoff appearances.