Tuesday Practice Notes
*Sidney Crosby remains off the ice after suffering a concussion last week and will miss his fourth straight game tomorrow night against the Montreal Canadiens.
There is no timetable for Crosby’s return as he still has concussion like symptoms. The Penguins are going to be very careful with him and Crosby appears to be taking the same approach which is a good thing.
The hope has been that he’d be cleared to play for next Tuesday’s showdown against the Detroit Red Wings but that remains to be seen at this point. Crosby will be sidelined for more than the expected week.
*The sense in the locker room today is that the Penguins got too comfortable in yesterday’s game and were a little bit “too loose”.
There are some areas that the team believes that need to be addressed but the Penguins focus appears to be moving on to the Canadiens.
One area though that has to be addressed is undisciplined penalties that haunted the Penguins last night and has been an issue for a while now.
*Jordan Staal and Evgeni Malkin will remain on separate lines for tomorrow night.
Staal remained with Matt Cooke and Tyler Kennedy today and there’s no plans to split them up after being reunited this week.
Malkin centered the top line with Chris Kunitz and Pascal Dupuis on his wings. He will stay there for the time being.
*Winger Arron Asham returned to practice after having a 24-hour flu bug and missing last night’s game. Asham expects to be available for tomorrow’s game.
Dustin Jeffrey who was an emergency callup, remains with the team for now. He skated on the 4th line with Letestu and Adams.
*Eric Godard is still recovering from a broken orbital bone and remains out indefinetely. Godard though has begun working out, according to Dan Bylsma. Godard broke his orbital bone in a fight with Senators defenseman Matt Carkner on Dec 26.
For some odd reason, the coaching staff let Godard back on the ice in the second period of that game to go after Carkner when his left eye was swollen shut and obviously had suffered a broken orbital bone.
The complete All-Star rosters were announced today by the NHL. The four representatives for the Penguins are Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Kris Letang and Marc Andre Fleury. All four players were voted into the game last week.
The captains who will select the team, will be announced next Tuesday or Wednesday.
Rookie center Mark Letestu was not named to the Rookies superskills challenge.
NHL DRAFT NEWS
Pittsburgh’s John Gibson is the top-ranked North American goaltending prospect for the 2011 NHL Draft, according to mid-term rankings released Monday by the NHL’s Central Scouting Bureau.
Gibson, who grew up in Whitehall and played amateur hockey for the Pittsburgh Hornets, is currently playing for the U.S. National Development Under-18 Team in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
He is part of a group of five Pittsburgh area prospects ranked among the best players available for the 2011 draft. The four others also played developmental hockey in the Pittsburgh Hornets system: Brandon Saad, J.T. Miller, Vincent Trocheck and Barrett Kaib. In addition, Saad and Kaib played local high school hockey in the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Hockey League.
* Saad, a left winger from Gibsonia who plays for Saginaw of the Ontario Hockey League, is ranked no. 8 among North American skaters.
* Miller, a center from East Palestine, Ohio and Moon who plays for the U.S. National Development Under-18 Team, is ranked no. 13.
* Trocheck, a center from Pittsburgh who plays alongside Saad at Saginaw, is no. 42.
* Kaib, a defenseman from Upper St. Clair who plays for the USND Under-18 team, is no. 175.
The NHL Central Scouting Bureau released its mid-term rankings on the same day that another Pittsburgh product, Matt Bartkowski, who played for Mt. Lebanon High School and the Pittsburgh Predators, made his NHL debut with the Boston Bruins against the Penguins at CONSOL Energy Center.