The league's reigning MVP hasn't played since his concussion after slamming into the end boards in a win over Florida on Feb. 22.
Coach Dan Bylsma says Malkin has passed all the mandatory NHL protocols following a head injury. Malkin says he has not experienced headaches, neck soreness or other symptoms. Malkin adds he did have short-term memory loss the day he was hurt.
Malkin has four goals and 17 assists this season. The Penguins went 2-2 in Malkin's absence. The 26-year-old is to play on the second line with Beau Bennett and James Neal against the Lightning.
We've got to find a way to win a game. He's played well in the minors, now he gets his opportunity. We tried [with Jonathan Bernier]. The way I look at it, you get opportunities and you make the most of it. That's what [James Reimer] did. Now another opportunity is here and Sparks ... you gotta grab it. Is he ready? We'll find out.
— Maple Leafs coach Mike Babcock to the Toronto Star on recalling goalie Garret Sparks from the AHL to start Monday in his NHL debut
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