During last night’s frustrating 4-3 shootout loss in San Jose, the Penguins lost a few defensemen to injury. Ben Lovejoy, who started the season as the team’s seventh defenseman, suffered a broken wrist after sliding into the boards in his own zone. There is no timetable for his return yet.
Matt Niskanen and Brooks Orpik were also injured during the game, but will hopefully not miss any more game action.
The team has recalled defenseman Robert Bortuzzo from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. At 6’4″ tall, Bortuzzo is a physical specimen. He played in 79 games at the AHL level last season, recording four goals, 26 points, 111 PIM, and a +28 rating.
Bortuzzo has played in just two games for Wilkes-Barre this season and missed all of training camp plus a few weeks of the season with a shoulder injury.
Bortuzzo was selected by the Penguins in the third round (78th overall) of the 2007 NHL Entry Draft. The 22-year-old is the most-tenured player on Wilkes-Barre with 156 games played.
The Penguins had called up Alexandre Picard from Wilkes-Barre for last night’s game to provide insurance against a banged up Kris Letang, but Picard will likely be inserted into the lineup for tomorrow night. The 26-year-old has played well in the AHL this season, with a team-leading +7 rating.
Pittsburgh will be without Zbynek Michalek for at least a few more weeks as his broken finger heals.
The team will probably roll with Letang/ Paul Martin, Orpik/Deryk Engelland and Niskanen/Picard as the defensive lines for tomorrow night, but only time will tell.
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