The Penguins will be down two defensemen for tonight’s game vs the New York Rangers. Kris Letang and Zbynek Michalek both traveled to New York and participated in today’s morning skate, but both have been ruled out for tonight’s game and are returning to Pittsburgh to be evaluated for their respective injuries.
The Penguins as of yesterday were optimstic about Letang playing tonight. However, Letang was further evaluated following the morning skate and it was deemed he will not play. Letang suffered a broken nose in Saturday’s win. He is struggling with his breathing out on the ice due to his injury.
Meanwhile, the Penguins have been mum on Michalek’s injury. Michalek missed parts of Saturday’s game but skated the past two days.
With Michalek and Letang out, Alexandre Picard and Robert Bortuzzo were recalled from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the American Hockey League.
Picard, 26, played in six games for Pittsburgh earlier this month, going scoreless with a plus-4 rating while averaging 12:41 minutes per game.
The 6-foot-3, 215-pound Picard was signed by Pittsburgh as an unrestricted free agent on July 5. Picard has spent the majority of the season with WBS, where he has amassed five points (1G-4A) in 12 games. His plus-9 rating is currently tied for the team lead and ranks 15th (tied) in the AHL.
Picard, who hails from Gatineau, QC, has appeared in 242 career regular-season games for the Philadelphia Flyers, Tampa Bay Lightning, Ottawa Senators, Carolina Hurricanes, Montreal Canadiens and Penguins, collecting 19 goals, 46 assists and 65 points.
Bortuzzo, 22, made his NHL debut with Pittsburgh on Nov. 5 at Los Angeles, going scoreless with two penalty minutes in 10:38 minutes.
Bortuzzo, who stands 6-foot-3, 196 pounds, has played in 11 games this season for WBS, collecting three points (1G-2A) and posting a plus-5 rating. Bortuzzo missed all of training camp and the beginning of the season while rehabbing from an injury suffered at the teamâs rookie camp in Oshawa, ON.