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Insider Only Friday’s Practice Buzz: For now Penguins don’t believe Bennett’s injury is as bad as initially feared

FRIDAY’S PRACTICE BUZZ
Beau Bennett went down in a heap of pain in what looked like a possible serious left knee injury but the Penguins “for now” don’t believe the injury is as bad as it looked. That doesn’t mean it’s not a long-term injury pending further evaluation.
Although it appeared the constant bad ice at Consol Energy Center played a part in Bennett crumbling to the ice, head coach Mike Johnston said afterwards Kasperi Kapanen’s skate clipped Bennett’s heel.
“When he {Beau Bennett} was skating across the ice, Kapanen’s skate clipped him on the back of the heel…..so he spun around in an awkward manner and went down on the ice,” Johnston said.
“We’ll have an update this afternoon. Early indications are it wasn’t as bad as it looked — that it may have been just the reaction to what happened.”
The Penguins broke today’s session into two groups. The second group was telling as it featured the likely next group of cuts following the next preseason game or two.
The Penguins main group saw the following line combinations:
Chris Kunitz – Sidney Crosby – Pascal Dupuis
Beau Bennett/Kasperi Kapanen – Brandon Sutter – Patric Hornqvist
Nick Spaling – Marcel Goc – Steve Downie
Zach Sill – Craig Adams – Blake Comeau
HARRINGTON GETTING STRONG LOOK WITH BORTUZZO POSSIBLY OUT
With Robert Bortuzzo sidelined with what is believed to be a shoulder injury that the Penguins don’t know the severity of yet, Scott Harrington is getting a strong look in a top-3 pairing role.

Harrington worked with Rob Scuderi as the Penguins No. 3 pairing today.
Coaches have tinkered with the pairings over the past week as Christian Ehrhoff and Kris Letang remain together, while Olli Maatta and Paul Martin were paired together.
Simon Despres and Philip Samuelsson worked as the No. 4 pairing.
Olli Maatta – Paul Martin
Christian Ehrhoff – Kris Letang
Rob Scuderi – Scott Harrington
Philip Samuelsson – Simon Despres
Penguins officials believe it is just a matter of time before Harrington forces his way onto the NHL roster.
It was interesting that Brian Dumoulin did not skate with the main group and skated with the second group that included Jeff Zatkoff, Oscar Sundqvist, Reid McNeil, Jayson Megna, Bobby Farnham, Taylor Chorney, Dominik Uher, Andrew Ebbett and Pierre Luc LeBlond.
Crosby and Kunitz will both play tomorrow vs Columbus.
Sidney Crosby and Chris Kunitz will both return to the lineup Saturday vs Columbus……Pascal Dupuis practiced on the top line but won’t play Saturday…..Daniel Carcillo (foot) skated prior to practice, he won’t play Saturday.

About The Author

William DePaoli

TIOPS Insider

William DePaoli is the President/Founder of Inside Pittsburgh Sports LLC and can be reached at wdepaoli@insidepittsburghsports.com

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