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UPDATED–Penguins Skate: Letang, Carter Absent Ahead of Game Against Boston

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Pittsburgh Penguins

Neither defenseman Kris Letang nor forward Jeff Carter participated in the Pittsburgh Penguins’ optional morning skate at PPG Paints Arena ahead of Tuesday’s game against the Boston Bruins at home.

Coach Mike Sullivan said after the skate that Carter will miss the game against Boston, while Letang is a game-time decision. He did not offer further details about either player.

Letang did not practice Monday. Sullivan said Letang was ill but did not elaborate.

Letang has not missed a game, but he did not seem to be at his best on the Penguins’ recent road trip. In losses at Edmonton, Calgary, Vancouver and Seattle, Letang had no points, a plus-minus of minus-7 and looked to make several misplays, a few of them costly.

Carter left Saturday’s loss at Seattle in the first period because of a lower-body injury. He did not practice Monday, and Sullivan said Carter was still being evaluated. He normally occupies the third-like center spot.

Sullivan said Tristan Jarry will start in goal against Boston.

The seven skaters who took part in the morning skate were defensemen Chad Ruhwedel, Marcus Pettersson and P.O Joseph, and forwards Sam Poulin, Teddy Blueger and Brock McGinn.

The Penguins, trying to snap that four-game losing streak, play back to back with a game Wednesday at Buffalo.

If any of the players stood up and offered some inspiration or demanded more perspiration, McGinn wasn’t saying.

“I think just in general everybody understands what we have to do,” McGinn said. “Everybody’s in this (locker) room for a reason. … It’s not just going to take one person; we need everybody to turn the page.

“It was definitely a tough road trip, and I think everybody’s ready to come out and work tonight. Everybody knows our play right now is not where it needs to be, and everybody takes pride in our game, so I think just coming out tonight and having a good start and building off it is key.”

Offense has been an issue – just a goal each in each of the past three games – and McGinn offered an age-old remedy. He said the Penguins need “a greasy goal” to break out of it.

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Shelly is a columnist and reporter for Pittsburgh Hockey Now. She was a Penguins beat writer for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and remains a contributor to The Hockey News. Catch her on Twitter @_shellyanderson

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