The Penguins will return to practice Thursday. Some quick hits to tide over dear readers:
• PRACTICE WILL BE CLOSED. Though standing-room-only crowds have become the norm for Southpointe sessions, this practice will be closed to the public because of a promotional shoot for HBO’s “24/7″ special. All I ask is that disappointed dear readers don’t slay the messenger.
• C JORDAN STAALwill speak publicly after practice for the first time since his second surgery for an infected right foot. Staal is expected to miss at least the first two weeks of the regular season, which opens next Thursday at home against the Flyers. I’m told he has been rehabbing the foot. It’s worth noting that I’ve yet to see him moving about without the assist of crutches and wearing a protective boot/cast on the foot. Trib Total Media No. 2 hockey reporter Josh Yohe will have all the Staal details tomorrow.
• In case you missed it, the club made cuts today: http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/s_701828.html
No real surprises. Club is at 30 players on the roster, including top prospects LW ERIC TANGRADI and D SIMON DESPRES.
• Some overdue celebratory shout outs to two friends of the blog: Jim Kolovos welcomed his first daughter, Elena Demetria, and Stephen Finerty welcomed his first baby girl, Adelyn Sara. Neither Baby Beauty has a favorite Penguin of yet, but I’m hoping they’ve already pegged somebody as the preferred beat reporter.