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PreVIEW: The #TribHKY early look at Penguins vs. Devils


A good morning (skate) to the Dear Readers…


= Penguins lines/pairings from the AM practice








GOALIE: Fleury


= Injury Update

RW James Neal (upper body) did not practice, but coach Dan Bylsma said he is a game-time decision. Neal has not practiced since Monday.

D Kris Letang (lower body) and RW Matt D’Agostini (lower body) will not play.

D’Agostini and G Tomas Vokoun are on the long-term injury list.


= Watch for This n’At

  • Joe Vitale on the second line was a decoy by coaches. Expect Beau Bennett to play on the second line if Neal cannot go.
  • This is the first regular-season game the Penguins will play under the new hybrid-icing format. Look for Sidney Crosby to perhaps be used in the offensive zone with unusual linemates if Bylsma can manipulate a matchup because the Penguins are getting more O-zone faceoff chances.
  • Olli Maatta, 19, is playing in his first NHL game. He has the look of a player poised beyond his years, but his defense partner is the Penguins defenseman with the least NHL experience. Robert Bortuzzo has played in only 21 games.


= The Read

And here:


= Hear Here:

Game-day radio hits: ESPN Radio with David Todd (2:30 p.m.); Penguins 24/7-TribLive Radio with Brian Metzer (5:40 p.m.)

TV: Roots Sports Pittsburgh Penguins Pregame Show (starts at 6:30 p.m.)



Be Excellent to each other,







Author: Rob Rossi

Rob Rossi is the lead sports columnist for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. He has been called many names, but “Rossi” is the one to which he most often responds. He joined the Trib in November 2002 and was promoted to the columnist role in July 2014. Previously, he had covered the NHL’s Penguins (2006-14) and MLB’s Pirates (2006), while also working on beats associated with the NFL’s Steelers (2005-06) and the NCAA’s Pitt (2004-06). He has won national and local awards for his coverage of youth concussions and athletes’ charities. Also, he is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association executive committee and the Pittsburgh chapter chair. Raised in Crafton and Green Tree and a graduate of West Virginia University, he has covered a Super Bowl, All-Star Games in baseball and hockey, the NCAA basketball tournament and over 100 Stanley Cup playoff games, including the Cup Final twice. Oh, and his sports reporting has led him to brief chats with Mick Jagger and Bruce Springsteen; so that’s pretty cool. He is a regular contributor on TV with WPXI, Root Sports Pittsburgh and TSN. Also, he is the authorized biographer of Penguins star Evgeni Malkin.

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