In injury news Thursday – what other kind is there on a non-game day for the Pittsburgh Penguins? – forward Jared McCann returned to practice, and coach Mike Sullivan divulged some information on winger Alex Galchenyuk’s latest setback.
“Good. A lot better,” McCann said after he remained on the ice at the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex longer than most of his teammates. “Just kind of a nagging injury that’s been bothering me for a bit here.”
McCann, who sat out Wednesday’s win against Colorado for the first game he has missed because of what the team is calling a lower body problem, said he does not have a sense of whether he will play Friday when Dallas visits PPG Paints Arena. He added that he wants to make sure he gets it taken care of so it doesn’t linger.
“I don’t want it to bother me again,” he said.
McCann had been filling in for injured second-line center Evgeni Malkin before he missed the game.
Sullivan said McCann remains day to day and, as with Wednesday, will be a game-time decision Friday.
Galchenyuk, meanwhile, is dealing with more than just the lower body injury that has sidelined him the past four games — and time during training camp before that. He is dealing with an allergic reaction.
During Wednesday’s NBCSN telecast of the Penguins game, national reporter Bob McKenzie reported that Galchenyuk had a bad reaction to a spider bite.
“It’s not confirmed that it was a spider bite,” Sullivan said. “He had an allergic reaction and went to the emergency room on his own. He was treated for an allergic reaction.
“Certainly, our doctors have followed it up.”
Sullivan said it’s not believed the secondary issue will affect how long Galchenyuk remains out.
The bad reaction – whether it was from a spider bite or something less gruesome — certainly doesn’t make the Penguins’ injury situation look any rosier, even with a four-game winning streak and solid contributions from players recalled from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the American Hockey League.
Malkin, Galchnyuk, Nick Bjugstad and Bryan Rust – all forwards — remain out, plus McCann’s unclear status.
With so many injuries, falling into the category of the wounded isn’t fun, McCann said.
“It’s frustrating,” he said. “I don’t want to miss any games. I want to be out there helping the team.”
There is no word of any other Penguins having a bad run-in with bats, snakes or Halloween goblins. So far.