What we're going to witness over the next few games is in essence a very different looking Penguins team. As you can see from below the lines are just most certainly not what they should be. The injury-ridden Penguins are compensating with AHL players that are as far up as the third line, forwards and defensemen. We're still waiting for the official update on how severe Orpik's injury is, but that makes six players now on the shelf for the Pens. And at this point none are expected back right away. Malkin may just be the first to hop off the shelf, but even that's not for sure.
Bylsma is going to have get creative here. I said yesterday that facing this type of adversity will prove to these men who they really are, down the stretch. Last year they needed a coaching change. But this year they don't need that. They need to get healthy. They need time. The best thing the Penguins can do here is to make the most of the situation. They're about a .500 team with what they have now. They need to at the very least be a .500 team during this injury stretch to keep contending. Good thing they started out as well as they did.
- Evgeni Malkin - Strained Shoulder, 2-3 weeks. Out: 10/29/09 - Expected Return: 11/19/09
- Brooks Orpik - TBD. Out: 11/10/09 - Expected Return: TBD
- Tyler Kennedy - Undisclosed (groin?), 2-3 weeks. Out: 10/24/09 - Expected Return: 11/19/09
- Kris Letang - Shoulder contusion, 2 weeks. Out: 11/07/09 - Expected Return: 11/21/09
- Sergei Gonchar - Broken wrist, 4-6 weeks. Out: 10/20/09 - Expected Return: 12/03/09
- Max Talbot - Shoulder surgery, 5-6 months. Out: 07/7/09 - Expected Return: 12/03/09