Evgeni Malkin practiced with the team although he was in a gray jersey which meant no contact. It is a step in the right direction although with no contact it makes him doubtful for tomorrow night's contest with the Calgary Flames. He will need to take contact before he is cleared for game action. He occasionally spelled Rowney during the line rushes. He was not taking part during the power play portion of practice.
You will also notice that Carl Hagelin is missing from practice. The working assumption is that he is dealing with concussion issues since he was hit in the head by Alexander Steen before he left the game and did not return.
Patric Hornqvist remains on the third line for whatever reason. Objectively speaking Sidney Crosby has better underlying numbers with Hornqvist than he does Rust. Over the past few years Crosby and Hornqvist have occasionally barked at each other on the bench. Is this Crosby wanting a different skill set on his line or is the coach just keeping Rust on the line because that's what he is going to do long term?
This is from a few days ago in Elliotte Friedman's 30 thoughts
[size]7. What is Steve Yzerman’s acceptable threshold for a Ben Bishop trade? There is a growing sense Tampa Bay is willing to move the goalie, give him a fresh start six months before unrestricted free agency. The move benefits the Lightning, too, allowing Andrei Vasilevskiy the rest of the season to learn what it will be like to be the full-time No. 1 in goal. Bishop got the first start out of the all-star break, a 4–3 loss to Boston, where he made 31 saves. It’s a worthwhile gamble for someone needing a jolt without taking on a firm commitment. Word is current offers are low and Yzerman isn’t biting. His risk is seeing a rejuvenated Bishop deliver high reward somewhere else.
If the offers are low from teams in needing of goaltending help with a pending UFA I can't imagine they'll be much higher for Marc-Andre Fleury who has two years left on his deal that pays him close to 6M. A Fleury trade remains tricky because you need to find a team that can fit his cap hit not only this year, but beyond. Pittsburgh is not going to want to take a lot of salary back because one of the biggest benefits of trading Fleury besides the expansion draft is the cap relief they would get.
Here's a look at how the Penguins have been playing. Their shot generation is slowly falling and their ability to suppress shots continues to fall below last year's numbers
Injuries and the Maatta-Daley pairing things are not helping this cause.[/size]