Evgeni Malkin will be a game-time decision tonight when his Pittsburgh Penguins host Vancouver.
Malkin has not played since Jan. 24 due to a lower-body injury. And though the Pens have done just fine without the star center, going 4-1-2 in the seven games he’s missed, they’d love to get him back all the same.
“I think that getting him back just makes us that much more dangerous,” said captain Sidney Crosby, per NHL.com. “I think everybody can fall into more of their usual roles, maybe, in some sense. Even with Geno back we’ve still got some guys out, so I’m sure there will be a little bit of juggling.”
The Canucks, meanwhile, are not expected to have All-Star center Bo Horvat in the lineup. The 21-year-old suffered a deep bruise in his foot while blocking a shot in the closing moments of Sunday’s 4-2 victory in Buffalo.
“It’s frustrating,” said forward Jannik Hansen, who’s recently formed an effective line with Horvat and Alex Burrows. “It feels like we’ve finally hit the ground running a little bit; we’re creating chances and getting rewarded. And this kind of throws a wrench into that.”
Brendan Gaunce has been recalled from AHL Utica to take Horvat’s spot in the lineup.
The Canucks may also be without Brandon Sutter.