Pittsburgh Penguins in hot water?
Things just seem to keep getting worse for the Pittsburgh Penguins, as the team learned Wednesday that they would be without star forward Evgeni Malkin for the rest of the season.
Malkin will undergo knee surgery on Thursday and is expected to be out of the lineup for six months.
Malkin tore his anterior cruciate ligament and medial collateral ligament in his right knee after he collided with Buffalo Sabres’ defencemen Tyler Myers in the second period of Friday night’s win over Buffalo. It was Malkin’s first game back after sitting out five games with a knee problem and a sinus infection.
In 43 games this season, he has 15 goals and 37 points.
This is horrible news for the Penguins after they learned Monday that they would be without Captain Sidney Crosby until at least March.
Crosby has been out of the Penguins lineup since January 5th after he was driven into the boards by Tampa Bay Lightning defencemen Victor Hedman.
Despite having both stars out of the lineup, the Penguins still have managed to put together a 4-2-0 record without the duo.
But, the Penguins know that they will not be successful in the playoffs if both players are injured going into the playoffs, so a return of Crosby as soon as possible is key. The team currently holds a 34-17-4 record, for 4th in the Eastern Conference, and 14 points in a playoff spot thanks to a hot start to the season.
Crosby, prior to getting injured led the scoring race, but now trails Daniel Sedin and Steven Stamkos. He has 32 goals and 34 assists in 41 games.
The big question is, for a Penguins team that has been successful over the past few years in the playoffs what does the absence of Malkin have on this team?