Player News - Penguins

Date: Team: Pos:

Sidney Crosby didn't take part in Pittsburgh's practice on Saturday.

Crosby's linemates, Pascal Dupuis and Chris Kunitz, didn't participate in the controlled scrimmage either. The Pittsburgh captain made a surprise appearance on the ice on Friday, but the team didn't give a reason for his absence on Saturday. Crosby was being hindered by an undisclosed injury, unrelated to his wrist, going into camp that was expected to keep him on the shelf.
Sep 20 - 4:49 PM

Kris Letang enters training camp healthy and ready to be a leader for the Penguins.

"I think I'm getting to the point in my career and with my age that I need to bring that aspect in the room, maybe take some young guys under my wing and make sure to follow the right footsteps." Matt Niskanen and Brooks Orpik left Pittsburgh in free agency, which could result in Letang being paired with Paul Martin as the club's top duo.
Sep 20 - 4:10 PM

Thomas Greiss is battling Jeff Zatkoff for the backup job to Marc-Andre Fleury in Pittsburgh.

It should be quite the battle and the unfortunate part is that the loser will not necessarily play for the AHL team as both need to clear waivers to play in the AHL. Greiss was signed as a UFA after playing in Phoenix last season while Zatkoff replaced the injured Tomas Vokoun as the backup in Pittsburgh last season. Stay tuned as it should come down to the wire.
Sep 20 - 11:54 AM

Olli Maatta (shoulder) skated in practice on Friday.

Maatta underwent surgery on his shoulder in late May and the recovery process was supposed to take four months so he is right on schedule. Maatta had a great rookie season as he had nine goals and 29 points in 78 games. Look for a bit of a regression in 2014-15 but Maatta has a bright future in the NHL.
Sep 20 - 11:45 AM

Evgeni Malkin sat out practice on Friday with an undisclosed injury.

Malkin will not be rushed from this minor injury and he is expected to be ready for the start of the NHL season. The problem when drafting Malkin on your fantasy roster is that he has played 70 or more games only once in the last five seasons. Malkin had 72 points in 60 games last season. Look for 80-85 points if he plays in 70 games.
Sep 20 - 11:42 AM

Pascal Dupuis practiced on Friday and said his knee was fine.

Dupuis suffered the injury in late January and underwent surgery on February 12. He said that he knee felt a little tight when he first skated on Friday but he forgot about it after a few minutes of skating. He wore a red jersey to indicate non-contact but it's expected he will be cleared within a week or so. Dupuis is slated to skate on one of the top two lines and likely with Sidney Crosby. Look for a 25 goal and 50 point season from the veteran.
Sep 20 - 11:38 AM

Kris Letang has been mentoring fellow defenseman Simon Despres.

Despres is expected to make the final roster of the Penguins as he'll have to clear waivers if he does not crack the lineup and it's unlikely that the Penguins will get to keep him. "He's been here for a while, so I'm trying to help him out," Letang said of Despres. "In my mind, he's a really good NHL player. He's got all the assets to become one of the best. He's one of the guys who I'm going to take care of, for sure." Despres played 34 games last season, picking up four assists. Look for a bigger season in 2014-15 as he should get 20-25 points.
Sep 20 - 11:33 AM

Zach Sill is going into training camp with the hope of securing a bottom-six roster spot.

As a small indication of what the team thinks of Sill, he was given a locker in the team's main dressing room rather than the one for prospects. "I liked seeing that when I walked in the first day," said Sill. "It definitely makes you feel good." Of course, he's not a prospect at this point, but he's not an established NHL regular yet either. He did play in 20 games with Pittsburgh in 2013-14, but the 26-year-old forward has an uphill battle ahead of him in the fight for a roster spot.
Sep 19 - 11:04 AM

Despite earlier expectations that Sidney Crosby (undisclosed) would miss the start of training camp, he was on the ice for 50 minutes on Friday.

The decision for Crosby to skate was made Friday morning. "I just talked to [trainer Chris Steward] and he said he was comfortable with me going out there for a little bit," Crosby said. "I was happy to hear that. Hopefully, I can put [together] a string of days here." In other words, it doesn't sound like Crosby is completely over whatever's bothering him, but he feels he'd probably be able to play in a regular season game in his current state, so this situation isn't too concerning. He might practice with the Penguins on Saturday.
Sep 19 - 10:59 AM

The Mike Johnston era kicked off on Thursday in Pittsburgh with the start of training camp, and one early focus the rookie coach plans to implement will be maintaining puck possession.

"The one thing I keep hearing is the puck possession, kind of the analytics of the game and being able to hold onto the puck instead of giving it away," said forward Chris Kunitz on Thursday. "If you keep the puck your shots go up, and I think we have a team that can skate up and down the ice." While the Pens made a few moves in the off-season to their roster, the most sweeping changes over the offseason came in shuffling off-ice personnel. "It's going to take a bit to learn a new system and to understand the expectations of our coaching staff," said Kunitz. "But I think we're all eager and excited to get into that process."
Sep 18 - 7:32 PM

Derrick Pouliot (shoulder) will skate in the morning when training camp opens.

However, he won't be available for practices with his teammates. Pouliot is still recovering from off-season surgery.
Sep 18 - 3:39 PM

Pascal Dupuis (knee) will be available for the start of training camp, but he won't take contact for the start.

Dupuis expects to get clearance for contact in about a week. He missed most of the 2013-14 season after he tore the MCL and ACL in his knee.
Sep 18 - 3:36 PM

Olli Maatta (shoulder) will be able to take part in "limited contact" at the start of camp.

He has been on the mend from off-season shoulder surgery since May. Maatta recorded nine goals and 29 points in 78 games during his rookie campaign. It appears as though he could be on track to be fine for the start of the season.
Sep 18 - 3:14 PM

Kasperi Kapanen (finger) has been cleared to participate in training camp.

He was held out of the prospects tournament because of a broken finger, but he's ready to take part in Pittsburgh's main camp. The 2014 first-round pick of the Penguins will look to impress the team's brass to try to earn a roster spot.
Sep 18 - 3:08 PM

Evgeni Malkin has a minor undisclosed injury.

Malkin will miss the start of training camp due to the ailment. There's no reason for the Penguins to push the star player to participate in practices weeks before the start of the season.
Sep 18 - 10:56 AM

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