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Gonchar Hits the Ice

by Sam Kasan / Pittsburgh Penguins
Penguins defenseman Sergei Gonchar was on the ice for the first time since March 22, as the blueliner did some skating and drills for about a half hour with strength and conditioning coach Mike Kadar.

Gonchar has missed the team's last three games with an illness, although head coach Dan Bylsma said that he is close to returning to the ice.

"I expect Gonch to be getting healthy very soon," he said. "I can’t predict the future on that one. I expect him to be getting back."

Evgeni Malkin did some light shooting on the ice, but did not skate. Malkin has missed six of the Penguins' last seven games with a foot injury. He originally hurt his foot after being hit with a shot from Kris Letang.

Bylsma said the team is being cautious with Malkin as he progresses back to health.

"With Geno, we are more apt to make sure he is 100 percent than to put his foot into a skate and go out when it is not 100 percent," Bylsma said. "I hope he is getting better. I know he is getting better. We will see him back on the ice here in the next couple days. He is possible for Wednesday. We are also not going to put him back in the lineup if he is going to be in one (game) and out one."
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