He was making his triumphant return to the lineup for Pittsburgh tonight, but Evgeni Malkin’s evening was cut short.
After missing multiple games and the All-Star Game with a sinus infection and a troublesome knee, Malkin left tonight’s game early after getting his knee tangled up with Sabres defenseman Tyler Myers. Malkin left the ice gingerly and went to the locker room to be attended to. Malkin will not be returning to the game tonight and now the collective breath of the Penguins will be held waiting to see what the diagnosis is on his injury. The team is listing it as a lower body injury but it seemed clear on replay that it was his knee that was hurt.
Without Crosby and without Malkin the Penguins offense hasn’t been its usual dynamic self. With no timetable on Crosby’s return, Malkin’s comeback tonight was the offensive lift the team was hoping for. Now they’ll have to sweat it out again hoping Malkin isn’t seriously injured.