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Penguins' Maatta out for Game 3 vs. Capitals

Pittsburgh choosing between Schultz, Pouliot to fill in for injured defenseman; Orlov could replace Orpik for Washington

by Wes Crosby / Correspondent

Pens react to loss of D Maatta

Penguins talk about the loss of Maatta for Game 3

Trevor Daley, Ian Cole, and Patric Hornqvist react to the Brooks Orpik suspension and the loss of teammate Olli Maatta for game 3

  • 01:58 •


Eastern Conference Second Round

Series tied, 1-1

TV: 8 p.m. ET, CBC, NBCSN, TVA Sports

PITTSBURGH -- Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Olli Maatta will not play against the Washington Capitals in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Second Round at Consol Energy Center on Monday.

Maatta did not participate in the Penguins' optional morning skate. His absence comes two days after he sustained an upper-body injury on a hit by Capitals defenseman Brooks Orpik 4:13 into the first period of Game 2.

Orpik received a three-game suspension from the NHL Department of Player Safety on Sunday.

Either defenseman Justin Schultz or defenseman Derrick Pouliot will replace Maatta in the lineup. Schultz played 5:52 in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference First Round against the New York Rangers but has been scratched the past six games.

"I didn't play that much in that first game, but just to get out there and kind of experience it was huge," Schultz said. "I'll be ready to go."

Pouliot, in his second NHL season, has yet to play in the Stanley Cup Playoffs but left the ice before Schultz on Monday.

"The guys have been playing well that have been in," Pouliot said. "But we need somebody else to step in and play a role. You definitely have to prepare mentally and be ready for tonight, no matter what."

The Capitals went 1-2 without Orpik against the Philadelphia Flyers in the first round, when he missed the final three games because of an upper-body injury.

"I expect the guys to step up and fill that gap," Capitals coach Barry Trotz said. "It's not just going to be the defensemen. It's going to be the forwards that have to do a better our job in our game to fill the gap as well."

Orpik and Maatta were teammates with the Penguins in 2013-14, when Maatta was rookie, and Orpik described Maatta as a "pretty good friend." He said he spoke with Maatta after Game 2 but didn't go into detail.

Defenseman Dmitry Orlov could replace Orpik after being scratched in Game 2.

Trotz chose to sit Orlov after a defensive lapse led to a goal by Penguins defenseman Ben Lovejoy. He had played in Washington's first seven playoff games.

Washington defenseman John Carlson said the Capitals realize Orpik's absence creates a sizable void, but they are focused on what they can control in Game 3.

"It's a bump in the road. That happens all the time," Carlson said. "Guys go down. We knew that in the playoffs. Things are never going to be perfect and he's a huge part of our team and the locker room, and on the ice, so it is what it is and we move on."

Here are the projected lineups:


Alex Ovechkin - Nicklas Backstrom - T.J. Oshie

Marcus Johansson - Evgeny Kuznetsov - Justin Williams

Jason Chimera - Mike Richards - Andre Burakovsky

Daniel Winnik - Jay Beagle - Tom Wilson

Nate Schmidt - John Carlson

Karl Alzner - Matt Niskanen

Dmitry Orlov - Taylor Chorney

Braden Holtby

Philipp Grubauer

Injured: None

Scratched: Mike Weber, Michael Latta, Stanislav Galiev

Suspended: Brooks Orpik


Conor Sheary - Sidney Crosby - Patric Hornqvist

Chris Kunitz - Evgeni Malkin - Eric Fehr

Carl Hagelin - Nick Bonino - Phil Kessel

Tom Kuhnhackl - Matt Cullen - Bryan Rust

Trevor Daley - Kris Letang

Brian Dumoulin - Ben Lovejoy

Ian Cole - Justin Schultz

Matt Murray

Jeff Zatkoff

Injured: Olli Maatta (upper body), Marc-Andre Fleury (concussion), Kevin Porter (ankle surgery), Scott Wilson (lower body), Beau Bennett (undisclosed)

Scratched: Derrick Pouliot

Status report: Fleury participated in the morning skate. Sullivan said he remains day-to-day, but is "making significant progress." … Alzner had a maintenance day Monday and is expected to play in Game 3.

Who's hot: Malkin has at least one point in all six playoff games. His nine points lead the Penguins. … Holtby has made 75 saves on 80 shots through two games this series. Among goalies to play at least four playoff games, his 1.24 goals-against average leads the League.

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