Letang Out 7-10 Days; Fleury Status Unknown
Penguins defenseman Kris Letang was placed on Injured Reserve and will be out 7-10 days with a lower-body injury. Goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury still needs further evaluation after leaving the Penguins’ 1-0 win against the Montreal Canadiens Tuesday night at CONSOL Energy Center.
Letang returned to the lineup Tuesday after missing the previous three games with a different lower-body injury. Head coach Dan Bylsma confirmed that Letang’s current injury is different and not an aggravation of the previous injury.
|Marc-Andre Fleury and Kris Letang (Getty Images)|
Bylsma had little information on Fleury, but added that he has not been ruled out to dress as the backup goaltender Thursday night against Winnipeg – Tomas Vokoun was already scheduled to be the starter.
“Marc-Andre Fleury is continuing to be evaluated today, I don’t have any more information for you in that regard,” Bylsma said. “We’ll have more information (Thursday) morning.”
Fleury was part of a collision with Tyler Kennedy and Montreal’s Brian Gionta in the final minute of the second period. Head athletic trainer Chris Stewart attended to Fleury after he was shaken up. He remained in the game to finish the final 49.2 seconds of the second period, but he did not return for the third period.
Meanwhile, Evgeni Malkin continues to practice each day with the team. He is listed as day-to-day with an upper-body injury. Malkin has missed the Penguins’ last nine games.
With Letang on IR, the team recalled blueliner Simon Despres from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. They have also sent Robert Bortuzzo to WBS on a conditioning stint. Bortuzzo is still part of the team’s 23-man roster, but is eligible to play three games in WBS without having to clear waivers.
Bortuzzo hasn’t played since Feb. 28 at Carolina, missing the past 13 games. The conditioning assignment will be an opportunity for him to get in some game action.
“He just has not played a lot of games and has an opportunity to play three games,” Bylsma said. “That conditioning is just a re-assignment. He’ll be recalled and remains a part of our 23-man roster.”
Notes: The Penguins had an optional practice Wednesday afternoon at CONSOL Energy Center, in which several players had maintenance days. Those that took part were forwards Dustin Jeffrey, Malkin, Brenden Morrow, Tyler Kennedy, Brandon Sutter, Beau Bennett, Craig Adams, Joe Vitale and Tanner Glass, defensemen Despres, Deryk Engelland, Douglas Murray, Matt Niskanen, Paul Martin and Mark Eaton and goaltender Tomas Vokoun.