NHL Pre-Game Notes: Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Winnipeg Jets

By Stephanie Lewark
Bruce Fedyck – USA TODAY Sports

Tonight’s game between the Pittsburgh Penguins (9-5-0) and the Winnipeg Jets (5-6-1) will be televised locally on ROOT Sports – Pittsburgh and nationally on CBC and RDS. Face off is set for 7:00 pm (est) at the MTS Centre.

This will be the first time that former Penguins forward Eric Tangradi will face Pittsburgh with his new team since being traded to the Jets this past Wednesday.  He is wearing #27 with the Jets and when asked about how it would feel to see the Penguins for the first time as an opposing player, Tangradi had this to say:

“It’s a little bit different, first game against the Penguins.  It’s kind of like seeing your ex-girlfriend at the bar the next night.  It’s a different feeling.  I’m just going to try and play my game and be physical.”

The Penguins morning skate was optional and everyone but Sidney Crosby and James Neal participated.

Here are the projected line combinations based on yesterday’s practice; it was just recently reported that head coach, Dan Bylsma, has stated that Beau Bennett will skate on the third line with Brandon Sutter and Tyler Kennedy which would leave Matt Cooke on the second line with Evgeni Malkin and Neal once again (as he was in last Wednesday’s game against the Ottawa Senators):

FORWARDS: Chris Kunitz-Crosby-Pascal Dupuis, Cooke-Malkin-Neal, Bennett-Sutter-Kennedy, Tanner Glass/Zach BoychukJoe Vitale/Dustin JeffreyCraig Adams;

DEFENSEMEN: Matt NiskanenKris Letang, Brooks OrpikPaul Martin, Simon DespresDeryk Engelland, Robert Bortuzzo. The projected starting goalie in net for the Penguins tonight is Marc-Andre Fleury.

The Jets will be without the services of three players tonight against the Penguins.  Defenseman, Zach Bogosian, with a wrist injury who actually might be a possibility as he’s listed day-to-day (its been reported that he will be a game time decision); forward, Antti Miettinen, with an upper body injury; goalie, Al Montoya, with a lower body injury; Ondrej Pavelec is the projected starting net minder for Winnipeg tonight.

Stephanie Lewark is a featured Pittsburgh Penguins writer for RantSports.com. Follow her on Twitter (@steelcitysports), check out her Facebook page, or add her to your Google+ circle.

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