The Pittsburgh Penguins were dealt another injury blow to their lineup as head coach Mike Sullivan has announced that Evgeni Malkin will be week-to-week with an upper-body injury. Malkin suffered the injury on a crosscheck from Robert Bortuzzo during Saturday afternoon’s game against the St. Louis Blues.
The Penguins labeled Evgeni Malkin's "upper-body" injury as week to week. He took a pretty vicious cross check in the right ribs portion of his upper-body from former teammate Robert Bortuzzo on Saturday: pic.twitter.com/iIuiifLY8s
— Seth Rorabaugh (@SethRorabaugh) March 18, 2019
Malkin ended up finishing the rest of the game but did not appear in Sunday night’s 2-1 overtime loss to the Philadelphia Flyers.
Evgeni Malkin Out With Upper Body Injury
This injury is obviously a huge blow to the Penguins. They’re fighting for not just positioning in the playoffs, but they’re also trying to take a run at the Metropolitan Division title. They’re three points out after this loss and there’s still no word on a return date for all-star defenseman Kris Letang either, though it may be on this upcoming road trip. Not having either one of them potentially in key games down the stretch will make running for a division title or home ice even harder than it already was.
Malkin has still enjoyed a great season as he has 21 goals and 71 points in 66 games. He’s coming off hitting 1,000 career points against the Washington Capitals this past Tuesday. With this injury, it means that Nick Bjugstad and Teddy Blueger will have to slide up the lineup. Blueger was the number two center against the Flyers and didn’t look out of sorts at all as he scored a goal.
This loss will also affect the power play as Malkin is one of the best players on the man advantage. He has nine power-play goals, 26 power-play points on the season. The man advantage looked lethargic (and that’s saying it nicely) without Malkin on Sunday night as the Penguins couldn’t get anything going. This is a big loss for the Penguins as they continue the stretch run.
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