New Jersey (34-35-4, 72pts) @ Pittsburgh (43-23-8, 94pts)
— Mike Comrie will be in the lineup tonight vs the New Jersey Devils, head coach Dan Bylsma said during today’s media session. Comrie will replace Dustin Jeffrey in the lineup.
Comrie could see time on a line with Alex Kovalev and James Neal but will start on the 4th line. He is also expected to see time on the second power play unit.
The sense is Talbot will get the bulk of minutes with Kovalev and Neal, while Comrie possibly gets a few shifts at center on the 2nd line. The Penguins will obviously monitor Comrie’s minutes and work him in slowly tonight, mostly on wing.
Comrie last played on November 24, 2010, vs the Buffalo Sabres. In 16 games played, Comrie has 0 goals and 5 assists on the season. He had an excellent pre-season alongside Evgeni Malkin on the second line but was not a factor early in the season.
The Penguins claim he was injured in the second game of the regular season against the Montreal Canadiens on Oct. 9.
— Dustin Jeffrey (right leg) is expected to be evaluated by team doctors today. The extent of his injury is not known at this time.
— Goaltender Brad Thiessen will backup Marc Andre Fleury for the second straight game. Brent Johnson remains sidelined due to an upper body injury. He is day-to-day.
— Sidney Crosby and Mark Letestu skated in full gear this morning for about 45 minutes. Letestu remains day-to-day and should return after the weekend.
— Defenseman Brooks Orpik will miss his 13th straight game. He’s considered a “possibility” for Sunday afternoon. I think he’ll be back in the lineup by Tuesday night vs the Flyers.
Kunitz – Staal – Kennedy
Neal – Talbot – Kovalev
Conner – Adams – Dupuis
Comrie – Rupp – Asham
Martin – Michalek
Lovejoy – Letang
Niskanen – Engelland
Marc Andre Fleury to start in goal.