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Penguins Practice: Guentzel Missing, Blueger Still Non-Contact

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Pittsburgh Penguins practice

Pittsburgh Penguins top-line left winger Jake Guentzel was not on the ice for practice Friday at the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex.

Guenzel left during Thursday night’s 6-1 win over the visiting Los Angeles Kings after he got bloodied when he got hit in the right ear area by a deflected shot in the third period.

UPDATE: Penguins coach Mike Sullivan addressed Guentzel’s injury, though it’s unclear when he will return.

Earlier, Guentzel took a high hit from the Kings’ Brendan Lemieux, a hit that coach Mike Sullivan and winger Jason Zucker called out as unnecessary.

Guentzel is tied for second on the team with three goals, five points through four games. He scored in Thursday’s game.

Danton Heinen took Guentzel’s place on the top line, with Sidney Crosby and Rickard Rakell. Rakell took Guentzel’s spot on the top power-play unit.

We will look for an update from Sullivan on Guentzel after practice. The Penguins later Friday are scheduled to travel to Columbus, where on Saturday they kick off a five-game road trip that will take them through Western Canada and Seattle.

Blueger remains non-contact

Penguins center Teddy Blueger continued to practice, but still was wearing a non-contact jersey.

It is creeping up on a month since Blueger left a Sept. 28 training camp practice because of an upper-body injury. Blueger has been skating for some time but has not been cleared. Sullivan said this week that Blueger has not had a setback. His official status remains day-to-day.

The lines, pairs

Danton Heinen-Sidney Crosby-Rickard Rakell

Jason Zucker-Evgeni Malkin-Bryan Rust

Brock McGinn-Jeff Carter-Kasperi Kapanen

Josh Archibald-Teddy Blueger-Ryan Poehling

Brian Dumoulin-Kris Letang

Marcus  Pettersson-Jeff Petry

P.O Joseph-Jan Rutta

(Chad Ruhwedel)

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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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Donny D
Donny D
1 month ago

Brendan L’s (I won’t sacrilege that last name) hit to Jake’s head is the reason why it is still a garage league. When that hit happens in the postseason, people will say “Well.. that’s the way he plays his game.” He shouldn’t be able to play his game that way in the post season or the regular season or the preseason. Only meaningful suspensions will curtail this. I don’t know if Jake is out due to the puck to the ear or the hit to the head or a combination of the two. But that hit was conceived and delivered… Read more »

JICS
1 month ago
Reply to  Donny D

Wow, that was well said, my friend. I’ve been thinking about that but could never have put it into words so well!

Wasnt
1 month ago

Let’s face it, Jake scores a lot so he has a target on his back and until the Pens get a couple tough guys Jake’s days are numbered. Pens haven’t even played NY or the Craps yet. This $hit gets to me each passing year.

JICS
1 month ago
Reply to  Wasnt

But Donny has the right solution, because this garbage needs to be dealt with by the League, on a fair, equal and consistent basis!