Time is running out quickly for the Pittsburgh Penguins this season. The team has 2 games left to pack in enough points to keep themselves in a playoff spot.
Even though the Penguins are 3rd in the Metropolitan division, they’re just 2 points above the Carolina Hurricanes and 3 points above the Columbus Blue Jackets. Therefore, with 2 games left, the Penguins need to pull just 2 points out of these games in order to clinch a playoff spot.
The next games are absolutely crucial and it’s looking like the Penguins can get their #1 Russian Centre back from the injured reserve.
Evgeni Malkin has been out of the lineup with an upper-body injury since March 16th. Malkin participated in practice today for the first time without the no-contact jersey. Geno worked with the top power play and taking line rushes with Phil Kessel and Bryan Rust. Both of which are a great sign for return in the final two games of the season.
“Like I told you a week ago, I will try to play the last two games. Practice with the team today and we’ll see how I feel tomorrow. I feel like every day is better and I want to come back and start to play.” (x)
Penguin fans are living on a hope and prayer that Geno wakes up feeling amazing tomorrow.
Malkin’s return would boost this team in their final drive of this season and snag the 2 points the team needs. Malkin has laid out 53 hits and blocked 33 shots in the 66 games he’s played in this season. Not to mention that Malkin has 21 goals and 50 assists for a total of 71 points. With Malkin on the ice, the teams corsi for percentage goes up to a 50.3% which means that the team is often in control of the puck with Geno on the ice.
Malkin did say to media after practice “It’s not like if I play we win the game. It’s not like that.” Although Geno isn’t wrong, there is no doubt that with him on the ice, the team’s chances of winning improve drastically.
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