Penguins Roundup: 12/6/13
Penguins head coach Dan Bylsma had a few injury updates for the team before they caught a flight for Boston on Friday afternoon to take on the Bruins Saturday night at TD Garden.
Evgeni Malkin and Pascal Dupuis are both day-to-day with lower-body injuries. Malkin did not accompany the team to Boston, meaning he will not play against the Bruins. Dupuis is with the team and has a chance to play.
Andrew Ebbett was placed on IR and is out indefinitely with a broken ankle. The break occurred Thursday night against the San Jose Sharks while blocking a shot. There is no timetable on his recovery.
The Penguins practiced at Southpointe in the afternoon. Malkin, Dupuis, Ebbett and Brooks Orpik did not participate.
Orpik had a maintenance day.
With Malkin out of the lineup, the all-versatile machine Jussi Jokinen slid over from left wing to center on the second line. And as expected, Jokinen made the transition flawlessly.
“Jussi is a guy that’s played those positions and played them well throughout his career at different times,” Bylsma said. “It’s not like he’s not a centerman and it’s not a natural fit. He is a centerman. He’s played the win a lot.
“He’s comfortable in a game if we get into a situation where we need a centerman for a shift or shifts in a game, he ‘s ready to do that. It’s not an adjustment period for him. After the (Thursday) morning skate he was making the shift to center it was not an issue at all.”
Jokinen also played point on the team’s top power-play unit. He and Matt Niskanen rotated in the vacated spot of Malkin. It’s a spot that Jokinen has played briefly in his career.
“Not too much, a little bit in Finland and some in the NHL,” he said. “Not too much honestly. On the first unit every guy is moving and finding open spots so that will help.
“You have to have the confidence to make a play and up there you can see things easier rather than in front of the net. It’s just having confidence in yourself to make those plays.”