Pittsburgh Penguins backup goaltender Casey DeSmith left Friday’s practice early after apparently needing medical attention following a save.
From the press level at PPG Paints Arena, the save did not seem to be much out of the ordinary, but DeSmith stayed crumpled on the ice for several seconds, then left. On his way down the players runway, he slammed his stick a couple times out of apparent frustration.
DeSmith and No. 1 goaltender Tristan Jarry missed the final regular-season game Saturday because of apparent minor injuries. Coach Mike Sullivan indicated that both were expected to be available for the playoffs, which for the Penguins open Sunday afternoon at home against the New York Islanders.
It’s not known if Friday’s problem is related to the lower-body injury DeSmith had. Coach Mike Sullivan said after practice that he did not have a full report on DeSmith but that the goalie was being evaluated for a lower-body injury.
If DeSmith is out Sunday, the presumed backup to Jarry would be Maxime Lagace. He started the final regular season game and shut out Buffalo.
Before practice, Penguins center Evgeni Makin, who might be nursing an aggravation of an earlier injury that was believed to involve a knee, spent about half an hour working with skills coach Ty Hennes. Malkin worked heavily on skating, including a lot of edge work.
Malkin returned for the main part of practice.
The practice focused heavily on special teams.