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Morning skate: Penguins-Jets

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media columnist

WINNIPEG, Manitoba — Here’s coverage of both teams’ morning skates, with news and updates as they come from inside the MTS Centre, plus a video from each locker room.

Here is the Trib’s Penguins page, which has Rob Rossi’s good look at Dan Bylsma’s tenure, news from yesterday by Josh Yohe and my column led by Beau Bennett stuff.

Oh, and for those curious, it’s about minus-6 out there. Which actually isn’t so bad.

Here’s my Twitter account, where you can follow along live.

UPDATE 11:18 a.m.: Eric Tangradi, set to make his debut with the Jets, will skate on a line with Olli Jokinen and Kyle Wellwood. And he sounds plenty excited about it …

You’ll also detect in there that he definitely didn’t feel the Penguins gave him a real chance.

Funny, by the way, to see 23 media members surrounding him. Only here.

11:23: The Penguins’ skate is now optional. That might mean we won’t know about Bennett, line combos or anything until game time. I’ll let you know.

12:32: Bennett will make his NHL debut, Dan Bylsma confirmed, and will skate on a line with Brandon Sutter and Tyler Kennedy. The reason cited by Bylsma is that he wants to keep Matt Cooke on Evgeni Malkin’s line after how well Cooke fared there the other night.

Also, Marc-Andre Fleury will start tonight. Tomas Vokoun missed most of the morning skate because of an equipment issue.

Bylsma, asked about Tangradi’s “short leash” comment: “I don’t feel that way, no.”

Here’s some of my talk this morning with Bennett …

12:38: Some of you might find this interesting: Ottawa’s owner ripped Matt Cooke.

I’ll have some of the Penguins’ reaction to that a bit later.

12:50: OK, here goes …

Bylsma reiterated that he empathized with the Senators’ frustration but said of Eugene Melnyk’s remarks, “Some people are making comments without having seen the changes Matt’s made to his game over the past two seasons. He’s a different player.”

Cooke answered more questions from reporters on the topic.

“I’m sorry Mr. Melnyk feels that way,” he said. “I understand the position he’s in, and it’s not easy.”

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Author: Dejan Kovacevic

Dejan Kovacevic, a lifelong Pittsburgher, is an award-winning sports columnist for Trib Total Media covering the Steelers, Penguins, Pirates, Pitt and, recently, his fourth Olympics in Sochi, Russia. He also appears on WPXI-TV's 'Subway Final Word’ and hosts a weekly show on TribLIVE Radio. For 2011, he was named one of the country's top four columnists by the AP Sports Editors. For 2012, he was named one of the country's top three columnists by the National Headliners. For 2013, he was named the state's top columnist by the Keystone Press Awards and top columnist in Western Pennsylvania by the Golden Quills.

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