The Penguins welcome a familiar face to Mellon Arena on Saturday night – the New York Rangers.
The two teams met last Saturday at Mellon Arena with the Penguins posting a 3-1 victory.
However, something will be different this time – Sidney Crosby will not be in Pittsburgh’s lineup.
The 19-year-old star will sit out his third-straight contest with a sore groin.
“I’m still a little sore, so I am not going to play tonight. It’s just something that is going to take time. It’s frustrating, but it’s going to take time,” Crosby said. “It’s frustrating, for sure, because it’s not something you can play through. The more you kind of play through it, the worse it’s going to get.”
Crosby tested his ability in the morning skate, but knew he wasn’t ready for game action yet.
“I tested it as hard as I could. It’s not ready,” he said. “I am a lot closer than I was three or four days ago. Hopefully it keeps improving every day. It’s been going like that so far. I am just waiting for that turnaround day where I am not going to feel much at all.”
Meanwhile, Penguins rookie Evgeni Malkin will be in the lineup Saturday. He scored a goal in the team’s 3-1 loss at the New York Islanders on Friday, but left the game after taking a solid hit late in the third period.
“He’s going to play. He’s OK,” Penguins coach Michel Therrien said. “Like I said [Friday], it was a good hit. If it happened in the first period, he would have come back. That’s part of the process of learning – when you get to the blue line, you have to make sure your head is up.”
Malkin leads all rookies in scoring with 21 points (11+10) in 17 games. Los Angeles forward Anze Kopitar is next with 20 points (5+15) in 24 contests.