Crosby, most of Penguins’ best players, unavailable vs. Avs

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The Colorado Avalanche won’t be facing the Pittsburgh Penguins tonight, or at least not the team fans have become accustomed to seeing.

Forwards Sidney Crosby and Chris Kunitz as well as defensemen Brooks Orpik and Olli Maatta are out, the team reported. They’re the latest additions to the list of injured Penguins players that also includes Evgeni Malkin, Kris Letang, Pascal Dupuis, and Marcel Goc.

But hey, at least Jussi Jokinen is ready to return.

The good news for the Penguins is that none of the newly injured players are dealing with long-term problems and given that they’re locked into the second seed in the Eastern Conference, Pittsburgh would probably jump on any mild ailment as a reason to rest its top guys.

One consequence of tonight’s lineup changes is that Sidney Crosby will once again full short of the 82-game mark. Penguins coach Dan Bylsma previously stated that he had no intention of listing Crosby as a healthy scratch before the playoffs.