PENSTV INTERVIEWSOlli Maatta Sidney Crosby Patric Hornqvist Blake Comeau --Michelle Crechiolo
Brandon Sutter's uncle on the right
Kopitar skated, but we don't know if he's going to play
Jeff Carter has been a stud for the Kings
Marian Gaborik skated as well, but we hear it's likely he won't play
The Pens likely won't see this guy tonight
So much laughter--Michelle Crechiolo and Joey Sykes
The Pens recalled forward Jayson Megna from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Thursday morning. Head coach Mike Johnston said the move was made to give the Pens flexibility, as right now they have just 12 forwards who are healthy enough to play with Beau Bennett still not available.
"To bring him up now (is) to give us some depth, because we don’t have an extra forward and I would think Beau Bennett is still going to be a week to 10 days away from probably playing once he get some contact," Johnston said. "'Megs' has been very good for them down there and we brought him up for the next few days."
Megna, 24, has skated in nine AHL games with WBS this season, scoring two goals and adding an assist for three points. He’s played in 36 NHL regular-season games with Pittsburgh last season, tallying five goals, four assists and nine points. He also suited up for two postseason contests.
"Megs had a good camp," Johnston said. "And down there so far in Wilkes, the reports are very good. He carries some speed, he can play with some skill. He’s got a little bit of physical play. He’s not a big guy, but he does finish his checks."
Also, Johnston confirmed that Paul Martin is feeling just fine after his maintenance day on Wednesday.
"I talked to him when we got on the ice this morning, I went by just to see how he was feeling," Johnston said. "And he feels great. Sometimes during the year with players who have played that volume of games over the course of your career, you do have to have a maintenance day. Paul had one yesterday and he feels great today."--Michelle Crechiolo
QUOTE 'EM--Michelle Crechiolo
Tocchet high sticks Bales. Inevitable heel turn
Johnston shows off his shooting abilities
Crosby stickhandles without looking at the puck
Dupuis unleashes the fury
No bobblehead tonight for Letang
It will be a very special night for Olli Maatta
Great to have some Sunshine at the morning skate
#QvistLove--Sam Kasan & Joey Sykes
MORNING SKATE INFO
All the Pens players were on the ice for the team's morning skate, including defenseman Paul Martin, who missed Wednesday's practice with tightness in his back.
The Pens used the following workflow...
DESPRES MATURING WITH EACH GAME
Despres snapped a hard, on-target pass that sprung Hornqvist into the New Jersey zone. Hornqvist unleashed a perfect shot over the shoulder of goaltender Cory Schneider.
The goal tied the Tuesday night game at 3-3, a game in which Pittsburgh would be victorious by an 8-3 margin. Despres finished the night with two assists, a plus-3 rating, three hits and was the game’s No. 2 star.
The play was also a glimpse of Despres’ potential as an NHL blueliner: the vision; the awareness of the situation; the right play read; the perfect pass. All those things, among others, are why the Penguins drafted the Laval, Quebec native in the first round (30th overall) of the 2009 NHL Draft held in Montreal.
Full story here.--Sam Kasan
The wonderful Celina Pompeani tells you the latest of what's trending around the Pens this week... --Sam Kasan
DIGITAL PREVIEW--Sam Kasan
SCOUTING THE KINGS --Sam Kasan
START ME UP
Good morning hockey fans. Tonight the Pens will host the defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings.
- The Penguins continue their three-game homestand against the Los Angeles Kings (TV: ROOT SPORTS; Radio: 105.9 the X) at CONSOL Energy Center.
- Pittsburgh’s current three-game unbeaten stretch (2-0-1) is the team’s longest of the young season.
- Last season the teams split victories in the season series, with each winning in the other’s building.
- Pittsburgh has won six of the last eight games in the series.
- Pittsburgh is 2-1 this season against teams from the Western Conference. Since the beginning of the 2011-12 season, the Penguins have 32 wins in 49 tries against the West, most among Eastern Conference clubs.
(Stick tap: Pens PR)
Also, tonight is the Penguins' "Hockey Fights Cancer" night. The players will wear special purple jerseys in the pregame warmups, which will be autographed and auctioned off after the game with proceeds benefitting the Mario Lemieux Foundation and Research at UPMC CancerCenter. For more details on the Pens' HFC night click here
Today we'll open the day with a song about Cali. Here is Weezer's "Beverly Hills." --Sam Kasan