Stop me if you have heard this one before- a Pittsburgh Penguins superstar is out with a concussion.
I don’t want to go that far yet with Evgeni Malkin, but it is being reported by Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Malkin is experiencing concussion symptoms including headaches and mild disorientation.
Malkin was injured when he was hit by Panthers defenseman Erik Gudbranson and is expected to miss Sunday’s game against Tampa Bay.
The Pens have had more than their share of concussion issues the past few years. Their captain Sidney Crosby missed parts of the past two seasons due to head and neck injuries, and defenseman Kris Letang was out of the lineup for an extended period of time last season.
If Malkin is forced to miss any length of time, which is pure speculation at this point, expect Brandon Sutter to move up to the second line and Dustin Jeffery to likely take over third line duties.
The odd thing about the injury is that all of the talk has been about finding a winger to play with Malkin and James Neal and now they may be forced to attempt to replace Malkin as well.
The timing is curious as the Pens travel to Carolina for the first time on Thursday to get a look at Jordan Staal. If Malkin is forced to miss any amount of time, they may really start to miss Staal for the first time this season