NHL Pittsburgh Penguins

NHL Pre-Game Notes: Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Ottawa Senators

Eric Bolte – USA TODAY Sports

Tonight’s game between the Pittsburgh Penguins (8-5-0) and the Ottawa Senators (7-4-2) will be televised locally on ROOT Sports – Pittsburgh and nationally on TSN. Face off is set for 7:00 pm (est). Everyone in attendance at tonight’s game will receive an Evgeni Malkin bobblehead.

Both defensemen, Kris Letang and Matt Niskanen, are close to returning to the lineup for the Penguins. Head coach Dan Bylsma has said they’re progressing, but has neither confirmed they will return to the lineup tonight to face the Senators nor has he ruled them out. Borrowed d-man, Joe Morrow, returned to the AHL affiliate in WBS on Monday.

The line combinations from this morning’s skate were as follows:

POWER PLAY: the top unit remained Paul Martin, Malkin, Sidney Crosby, James Neal and Chris Kunitz. The second unit consisted of Letang and Niskanen on the points with Brandon Sutter, Tyler Kennedy and Pascal Dupuis down low.

FORWARDS: Kunitz-Crosby-Dupuis, Zach Boychuk-Malkin-Neal, Matt Cooke-Sutter-Kennedy, Tanner Glass-Joe Vitale/Dustin Jeffrey-Craig Adams;

DEFENSEMEN (from last game): Orpik-Martin, Simon Despres-Dylan Reese, Robert Bortuzzo-Deryk Engelland. The projected starting goalie in net for the Penguins tonight is Marc-Andre Fleury.

The Senators will be without centers, Jason Spezza, due to a herniated disc in his back, and Peter Regin, who has an upper body injury, tonight against the Penguins; Ben Bishop is the projected starting net minder for the Senators tonight.


Stephanie Lewark is a featured Pittsburgh Penguins columnist for RantSports.com. If you enjoy her posts, you can follow her on Twitter (@steelcitysports), check out her personal Facebook page (via Networked Blogs), visit her Tumblr page, or add her to your Google+ circle.