PITTSBURGH (93-7 The FAN) – Pittsburgh Penguins head coach Mike Johnston addressed the media following the teams first practice since the All-Star break and had news on several injured players.

Johnston talked about Evgeni Malkin being placed on the injured reserve and said they “don’t expect he will skate in the next few days,” and will then will be evaluated to determine when he can get back on the ice.

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Captain Sidney Crosby did not practice with the team today.

“Sid should be back fairly soon,” head coach Mike Johnston said. “After the injection he has to wait so many days and his days are up today. I expect Sid to return soon. We will see when that is.”

Forward David Perron missed a portion of the practice after leaving with a cold, but it’s hoped he can play on Tuesday.

With all the injuries, the Pens lines in practice looked much different than what we’ve grown used to, particularly in the top 6.

Lines

Kunitz-Arcobello-Hornqvist

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Spaling-Sutter-Bennett

Wilson-Goc-Downie

Sill-Rust-Ebbett-Adams

It’s not just the forwards that are struck by the injury bug right now though as, coming off the Zac Rinaldo hit that knocked him out of the teams game against the Flyers right before the break, defenseman Kris Letang said his return to practice today went well.

When asked if he can play, Letand said “yes, yes I think so.” That was the practice to make sure we had no problem with it and it went really well.”

“Letang hasn’t been cleared, only for practice with limited contact,” said head coach Mike Johnston. “He is moving along in the process and hopefully we’ll check ‘em off (the checklist for concussion protocol). He’s had a good practice with limited contact and we’ll see what the doctors’ say for tomorrow (Tuesday).”

Defenseman Simon Despres is still dealing with an illness he was suffering from last week and his status for Tuesday night’s game against the Winnipeg Jets is up in the air.

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