Reports out of Pittsburgh have confirmed that Penguins forward Evgeni Malkin did not accompany the team on its two-game road trip as a result of recurring soreness to his surgically repaired right knee.
According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Malkin, who has 4 points but has missed three of the past four games, will be sidelined for matches in Winnipeg on Monday and Minnesota on Tuesday. He'll be re-evaluated prior to Pittsburgh's home contest against the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday.
In addition to Malkin, Sidney Crosby (concussion), Brooks Orpik (abdomen) and Dustin Jeffrey (knee) did not join the team for the two-game road trip. Crosby was cleared for contact last week, but the Penguins have no plans to rush him back into action.
I've been getting frustrated lately, and the only thing keeping me sane was the team winning and other people stepping up and scoring. Then you just kind of let it go and realize you can end the series with one shot, that frustration goes away for a brief moment, and that's what happened.
— Montreal forward Max Pacioretty after scoring the OT winner in Game 4 -- his first career playoff goal -- to eliminate the Lightning and send the Canadiens into the second round