PITTSBURGH (KDKA) –The Pittsburgh Penguins have dealt with injuries all season. Now, they’ll be without one of their biggest stars for a couple of weeks.
Head coach Dan Bylsma announced Evgeni Malkin will miss 2-3 weeks with a foot injury after the team’s practice on Tuesday.
Bylsma said Malkin suffered the injury against St. Louis on Sunday.
“He got hurt on a play towards the net last game against St Louis on his first shift,” Bylsma said. “[Malkin had a] strong couple of games and to get that news is disappointing.”
Now, Brandon Sutter will slide into Malkin’s vacant center position on the second line with James Neal and Jussi Jokinen.
“One of the things we were actually looking to see in the last 15 games was the possibility of Jokinen with Sutter as kind of a combination duo on a line. We’re going to see it now. We used it in the Anaheim game for the second half of the game and it probably was our best line,” Bylsma said.
Bylsma also said this will be a good opportunity for Sutter to contribute more offensively.
“It’s going to be an elevation in minutes a little bit, but not necessarily in role on our team for Brandon. It’s a good opportunity. It’s something we’re probably looking to see regardless of our injury situation,” Bylsma said.
While Jokinen has been used as a center in the past because of injuries, the plan is to keep him on the wing for now.
Malkin has only played in 60 of the team’s 71 games this season. During that time, he has racked up 23 goals and 49 assists.
The Penguins will be back in action tonight against the Phoenix Coyotes.
Listen to Bylsma talk about Malkin’s injury here: