The Pittsburgh Penguins (9-8-4) have won two of their past three games and have points in four straight games. They’ll have a stiff road test Tuesday in perhaps the loudest arena in the NHL, against the Winnipeg Jets (13-7-2). After recent success, the Penguins lines appear to be the same group, thought Derek Grant could push Daniel Sprong to the press box if healthy and the Penguins may have a burgeoning goalie controversy.
Casey DeSmith will start against Winnipeg, which means Tristan Jarry will likely get the nod Wednesday against Colorado.
The Penguins finally beat an Eastern Conference team, Saturday when they dispatched the Columbus Blue Jackets at PPG Paints Arena, 4-2. Jake Guentzel had a hat trick and Kris Letang had three assists. Guentzel now leads the Penguins with 11 goals.
The win raised the Penguins out of last place in the Metro Division, ahead of New Jersey and Philadelphia. The Penguins are four points behind Montreal for the second wild-card position.
Penguins winger Patric Hornqvist remains out with a concussion and Derek Grant practiced Monday in a non-contact jersey.
Winnipeg is in fourth place in the competitive Central Division. They boast the top power play in the NHL and a physical, skilled lineup. Patrick Laine has been on a tear, as well. The young sniper had 11 goals in four games last week.
Winnipeg is 8-2-2 at home and 5-3-1 against the Eastern Conference. Though they are the most penalized team in the NHL.
Penguins Power Play: 25% (7th NHL)
Winnipeg Power Play: 30.4$ (T-1st NHL)
Penguins Penalty Kill: 81.8 (9th NHL)
Winnipeg Penalty Kill: 81.6 (10th NHL)
Penguins Penalties Taken: 7.6 minutes per game (T-4th NHL)
Winnipeg Penalties Taken: 12.7 minutes per game (31st NHL)
Expected Penguins Lines
|Jason Zucker||Sidney Crosby||Conor Sheary|
|Patrick Marleau||Evgeni Malkin||Bryan Rust|
|Evan Rodrigues||Jared McCann||Patric Hornqvist|
|Brandon Tanev||Teddy Blueger||Sam Lafferty|
|Brian Dumoulin||Kris Letang|
|Marcus Pettersson||John Marino|
|Jack Johnson||Justin Schultz|