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It looks like Carl Hagelin could miss another game for Penguins

After sitting out the Penguins’ Game 7 win over the Washington Capitals, it seems likely that forward Carl Hagelin will remain out of the lineup on Saturday night when they open the Eastern Conference Finals against the Ottawa Senators.

Even though Hagelin took part in the team’s optional morning skate, he remained on the ice after it ended for extra work along with Tom Kuhnhackl, Cameron Gaunce and Derrick Pouliot, seemingly indicating that he will be among the team’s scratches. Hagelin and Kuhnhackl, regulars in the Penguins’ lineup for most of the season, were replaced by Carter Rowney and Scott Wilson in their 2-0 win in Washington on Wednesday.

Hagelin missed the the last month of the regular season, as well as the first-round of the playoffs, due to a lower body injury.

He returned in Game 2 of their second-round series against the Capitals but never really seemed to be 100 percent. He never played more than 12:48 in the five games he played, and was limited to just 9:19 in their Game 6 loss.

Penguins coach Mike Sullivan was asked on Saturday if lineup continuity at this point in the season is a luxury, or something you can not really expect given the grind of the postseason.

“We’ve got some moving parts,” said Sullivan. “We believe we have a lot of depth within our team, and we can utilize guys in different ways to help our team win. So all of these guys that have been in our lineup here throughout the course of the Playoffs have played significant minutes for us during the regular season. They’ve all been a big part of this team’s ability to get to this point.

“So we believe, as a coaching staff, that we’ll lean on all of these guys to continue to help us win. We can only dress 12 forwards and 6 defensemen — or 18 skaters and 2 goalies, I should say. But certainly, our team is bigger than that. These guys, whether they’re in the lineup or they’re not in the lineup, they’re everybody bit as important to helping this team win.”

Rowney and Wilson did not add to the offense in Game 7 but they did bring some fresh legs to the Penguins’ lineup and gave them some strong shifts from the fourth line.

WATCH LIVE: Pittsburgh Penguins at Ottawa Senators – Game 6

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Last night, the Nashville Predators demoralized the Ducks and advanced to their first-ever Stanley Cup Final. Will we learn their opponent tonight or on Thursday?

That’s up to how the Pittsburgh Penguins and Ottawa Senators perform in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Final.

Will Sidney Crosby and the Penguins follow that 7-0 rout with a close-out performance, or will Erik Karlsson and the Senators avenge that embarrassing loss to send this series to a decisive Game 7?

Find out on NBCSN at tonight. You can also watch the game online and via the NBC Sports App.

Here’s what you need to know:

Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Ottawa Senators (Pens lead 3-2)

Time: 8:00 p.m. ET

Network: NBCSN (Stream online here)

Check out the highlights from Pittsburgh’s 7-0 win in Game 5

Related:

Pens redefining defense by committee

Four things the Pens need to do to eliminate the Sens

Swedish League champ sees another sign in NHL

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It’s an offseason of change for SHL champion HV71.

In the days following the league title, HV71 saw No. 1 goalie Linus Soderstrom sign his ELC with the Isles and d-man Andreas Borgman — the league’s rookie of the year — ink with the Leafs.

Earlier today, HV71 winger Filip Sandberg signed a two-year deal with San Jose. Shortly after that, Columbus announced it inked Sandberg’s running mate up front, Kevin Stenlund, to a three-year, entry-level deal.

Stenlund, 20, was the Blue Jackets’ second-round pick (58th overall) at the 2015 draft. He’s coming off a good year, setting career highs in goals, assists, points and games played during the regular season, then adding 10 points in 16 playoff appearances.

And he might have a chance to build on that campaign.

Per the Dispatch, the Blue Jackets expect Stenlund to play next year in Sweden, rather than try to make the move overseas. It’s possible the Isles could make the same decision with Soderstrom — meaning it’s not all bad for HV71.

 

Oilers re-sign Pakarinen for one year

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The Edmonton Oilers have given winger Iiro Pakarinen a one-year contract extension.

From the release:

Pakarinen just finished his third season with the Oilers organization, appearing in 14 regular season games in 2016-17, posting four points (2 goals, 2 assists).  The 25 year old forward missed 53 games due to an injury suffered during the pre-season. He appeared in one playoff game against the San Jose Sharks.

The Oilers brought Pakarinen over from Finland in 2014. Since then, he’s split his North American career between the AHL and NHL while drawing praise for his versatility and hard-nosed style.

Per CapFriendly, Pakarinen’s cap hit will be $750,000 in 2017-18. It’s a one-way deal.

Market heating up for prized Czech d-man Rutta

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Coming off an impressive performance for the Czech Republic at the World Hockey Championship, Jan Rutta is now being courted by a number of NHL clubs.

Per The Athletic, the Blackhawks are in contention for securing Rutta’s services. That comes on the heels of earlier reports from TSN’s Darren Dreger, who said there are “multiple” offers for the 26-year-old, including ones from Edmonton and Calgary.

“He’s a steady defenseman with size, and he had a strong finish of the season,” an NHL scout told The Athletic. “He was very good in the playoffs and played his best at the Worlds.”

Rutta, who was never drafted by an NHL club, has spent his professional career with Czech League outfit Pirati Chomutov. He’s blossomed into a talented offensive defenseman — finishing second among Czech League d-men with 32 points in 46 games this year — and, as mentioned above, has good size at 6-foot-3, 200 pounds.

Last week, Rutta’s agent — longtime Octagon Hockey representative Allan Walsh — tweeted that his client would make a decision on NHL offers soon.