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Pens Report: 04.28.17

by Sam Kasan @PensInsideScoop / Pittsburgh Penguins

The Pens practiced on Friday afternoon at Verizon Center. Here's what you need to know from the session…. 

*Forward Carl Hagelin took part in his first full-contact practice on Friday. He will be a game-time decision for Game 2 of the Pens-Caps Second Round series on Saturday night at 8 p.m. at Verizon Center.

"It was fun to be out there and it felt good," Hagelin said following practice. "It's a step in the right direction. It's a day-to-day thing. Hopefully it feels even better tomorrow."

Hagelin missed the last 16 games of the regular season and all 6 playoff games thus far due to a lower-body injury.

"You have to keep feeling good without any setbacks or any pain," Hagelin said. "I felt like I was moving (in practice). I'm excited."

Hagelin skated on a line with winger Phil Kessel and center Evgeni Malkin during practice. Kessel would love to have his former linemate back on the wing.

"Hagy's a great two-way player. He's a fast player. He brings speed," Kessel said. "If you can get a guy like that back, it's good for your team."

"His skillset lends to the type of game we're trying to play," head coach Mike Sullivan said. "He brings that element of speed. He's able to stretch the ice. His pursuit and 200-foot game forces turnovers and create a lot of offensive off of it.

"We're a more competitive team when he's in the lineup."

The bigger question for the coaching staff if Hagelin does return is which player comes out of the lineup.

"These are difficult decisions that we have to make, but they're good decisions that we have to make," Sullivan said. "It's just an indication of the depth of our team. The healthier we get, the more difficult those decisions become."

*The only players missing from practice were forward Patric Hornqvist and defensemen Trevor Daley and Brian Dumoulin.

All three players were given maintenance days according to Sullivan.

*The Pens used the following workflow…

Guentzel-Crosby-Rust

Hagelin-Malkin-Kessel

Wilson-Bonino-Sheary

Kunitz-Cullen-Kuhnhackl

Defense rotated

PP1: Schutlz, Crosby, Kessel, Malkin, Guentzel

PP2: Maatta, Streit, Bonino, Sheary, Rust

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