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Malkin Close to Return

by Sam Kasan / Pittsburgh Penguins
Penguins forward Evgeni Malkin, who has missed the last four games with a knee injury, participated in a full practice Monday at Southpointe, and said he is close to returning to the lineup.

Malkin even said there is a possibility that he could play in Philadelphia Tuesday night when the Penguins take on the Flyers.

"I can't say now, but we'll see in the morning skate (Tuesday)," said Malkin, who jokingly added that he had a 50-50 chance of playing. "I feel very good. We'll see.

"I feel better everyday. Today I skated pretty hard. I feel alright. It's tough when I'm not playing. I understand that I need rest because my knee is a little bit sore. I hope I play tomorrow."

Head coach Dan Bylsma wasn't ready to commit Malkin to the lineup against the Flyers.

"I haven't had a discussion with Malkin yet," Bylsma said. "He's still day-to-day so we'll see. He's been working. He got a full practice today. Hopefully, we'll get to see more tomorrow.

"He's gone through a couple workouts without pain. Today was another level with contact practice. He was skating well and doing better. Hopefully, we'll see a continued improvement (Tuesday)."
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