“If you’d have told me two years ago I’d be sitting here, the general manager of the Pittsburgh Penguins, I would have started laughing, but here we are. I’m very excited about it.” — Ron Hextall, 2/9/2021

Hextall is not kidding, what a long strange journey it has been for him. Most known in Pittsburgh for being the hot-headed Flyers goalie from 1986-92 and then again from 1994-99. In recent years he was back as the Philadelphia general manager from 2014-18.

It’s that stint which we’re looking back at here, with help from a great GM career retrospective from Broad Street Hockey to learn more about what Hextall did on his first NHL GM job.

But, as Hextall pointed out, just because he had certain tendencies or gained a certain reputation in his first stop, that doesn’t necessarily speak to the entirety of his skills and abilities.

“My philosophy has always been, we want to be as good as we can be,” Hextall said. “We also have to keep the future in mind, but we have to keep today in mind too. This situation I’m coming into now is certainly different than the one that we took over in L.A. or in Philadelphia. I’m not a one-trick pony. I’ll work with [Brian Burke] to, again, become the best team we can today. If we can get better this year, we’ll try to get better.”

Here’s what Hextall has on the resume so far.

Drafting

Hextall oversaw five drafts in Philadelphia, and he also served as an assistant GM in Los Angeles which built that team up in the late 2000’s into the club that would win the Stanley Cup in 2012 and 2014 (with Hextall on staff for 2012).