Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin will be out 6-8 weeks because of an upper-body injury, the Penguins said Saturday.
Malkin appeared to injure his left arm Friday during a 3-2 win at the Columbus Blue Jackets when he collided with Blue Jackets defenseman Dalton Prout.
The Penguins have a three-point lead on the Philadelphia Flyers for the second wild card from the Eastern Conference into the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
The NHL regular season ends April 10; six weeks from Saturday is April 23.
Video: PIT@CBJ: Malkin's injury forces him from the game
Malkin has 27 goals and 58 points in 57 games this season. He missed 10 games last month because of a lower-body injury. The Penguins were 5-4-1 in those games, and are 70-45-9 (.601 points percentage) in games without Malkin.
Nick Bonino practiced in Malkin's spot between wings Carl Hagelin and Phil Kessel on Saturday.
"With [Evgeni] out a few times this year, and guys have been hurt, we've all gotten to play with different guys," Bonino told the Penguins website. "For me, my game won't change, it'll still create chances, hopefully they'll go in, play good in our end, just get them the puck, like I said."
Defenseman Justin Schultz, acquired in a trade with the Edmonton Oilers on Feb. 27, spent time at practice on the first power-play unit.
"It's definitely an opportunity, I have to take advantage of it," Schultz said. "Hopefully we can get some chemistry out there. There's a lot of firepower out there, so putting the puck in the right places for them and hopefully we can have some success."
Pittsburgh recalled forwards Dominik Simon and Conor Sheary from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the American Hockey League.
The Penguins play at the New York Rangers on Sunday (12:30 p.m. ET; NBC, TVA Sports, SN).