Pittsburgh received some more tough news on the injury front on Friday, as head coach Mike Sullivan announced d-man Olli Maatta is out week-to-week with a lower-body injury suffered last night against the Devils.
Aside from that bit of news, the Pens were otherwise tight-lipped about Maatta’s situation. It’s unclear what the injury is, or how it happened — as the Post-Gazette points out, Maatta finished last night’s loss and was on the ice for the final shift of the game.
Regardless, the focus is on Maatta’s absence. And what it means for the Penguins.
Here’s how the new defense pairings look:
While Pittsburgh has enough capable bodies to fill the gap, replacing what Maatta brought to the table will be difficult. The Finnish blueliner averages close to 20 minutes per night and is a steady offensive producer, with six goals and 19 points through 67 games this season.
As for the playoffs — well, who knows. There are still two weeks left in the regular season, so Maatta has some time to rehab before the postseason begins.
Assuming the Pens qualify, that is.