Monday, we had injured Pittsburgh Penguins winger Jason Zucker on the ice early (and then for practice), and Tuesday we had injured defenseman Jeff Petry on the ice early before the team’s optional morning skate at PPG Paints Arena.
Coach Mike Sullivan dropped some interesting news after the skate: Zucker and fellow forward Josh Archibald are game-time decisions for Tuesday’s home game against the New York Rangers.
Zucker had been listed as week-to-week because of a lower-body injury less than a week ago, so his progress has surely accelerated. He and Sullivan insisted Monday — after Zucker surprisingly was a full participant in practice — that his timetable had not changed.
Archibald missed Monday’s practice, and Sullivan said he was being evaluated for a lower-body injury, so being a game-time decision would seem to suggest he tested out well.
Petry is on LTIR because of an upper-body injury believed to involve his left hand, wrist or arm, so he is not eligible to play before the holidays, certainly not against the Rangers. But being on the ice is always “one day closer to returning,” as skills assistant Ty Hennes yelled in the form of encouragement during their pre-skate workout on the ice.
Zucker was among the participants in the lightly attended skate. The others were forward Drew O’Connor, defensemen Chad Ruhwedel, P.O Joseph and Mark Friedman, and goaltender Casey DeSmith. Sullivan said Tristan Jarry will start in goal.