What a couple of days it’s been for Evgeni Malkin.
After he became a father for the first time on Tuesday morning, Malkin was in the lineup for the Pens on Wednesday night as they beat San Jose 2-1 in overtime to take a 2-0 series lead in the Stanley Cup Final.
“It’s a great moment in my life,” Malkin said. “It’s changed a little bit right now. But I’m happy. I’m a happy guy. I’m just enjoying my two families, one family at home and one family here.”
Malkin and his fiancée Anna Kasterova welcomed son Nikita at 9:45 a.m. on Tuesday – who weighed 7 pounds, 1 ounce.
“It’s unbelievable,” Malkin laughed. “I know it’s my son because he’s 7.1.”
And even at just two days old, Nikita already has his dad’s No. 71 jersey courtesy of the Penguins.
“I want to say thank you to the whole Pittsburgh organization,” Malkin said. “They did a great job, they support me, they support my family. (They sent) a couple presents and the jerseys too.”
Malkin said that the couple chose the name because of how it would translate between their native Russia and adopted United States.
“The (nickname) here is Nick, Nicky. It’s easy to spell, it’s easy to sound in both countries,” he explained.
Thanks to Kasterova, Malkin was actually able to get some rest amidst all of the chaos going on in his life right now.
“My wife did a great job and she said go home and sleep,” said Malkin, who still had his hospital bracelet on after the game. “I went home after everything and slept like 11 hours. It’s good. She did a good job.”
Now it’s off to San Jose for Games 3 and 4, where Malkin will likely try to get as much rest as possible while he can.
“’Geno’ has had a real exciting couple of days,” head coach Mike Sullivan smiled. “We're all thrilled for him. He's a great kid. He's had a few emotional days here. I'm sure he'll get plenty of rest."