With Neal definitely out for both games against the Flyers this weekend, the Pittsburgh Penguins announced that Jayson Megna would take Neal’s place on the active roster.
The 24-year-old Megna was signed as an undrafted free agent nearly two years ago, and he’s proven to be a useful pickup by the Penguins’ player personnel staff.
In addition to scoring 26 points in 78 games for the AHL Pens, Megna has provided speed, energy and good hockey sense at the NHL level, where he’s contributed seven points (4g, 3a) in 24 matches this season.
Despite Megna’s call-up, the former Nebraska-Omaha star isn’t guaranteed to play in either game against Philadelphia. The lines at Friday’s practice featured Brian Gibbons on the second line in Neal’s customary right-wing spot and trios of Tanner Glass-Brandon Sutter-Marcel Goc and Taylor Pyatt-Joe Vitale-Craig Adams.
Tonight’s Game: Penguins (44-17-4, 92 points – 1st Metropolitan) at Flyers (33-25-7, 73 points – 4th Metro) at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia
Faceoff: 1 p.m. ET
TV: Root Sports Pittsburgh (local), NHL Network (national)
Radio: 105.9 The X
While the Penguins are battling only Boston for first in the Eastern Conference – the Bruins have a one-point lead – the Flyers have several teams to contend with as they push to make the Stanley Cup playoffs.
The Flyers are only one point back of Columbus for third in the Metropolitian Division, but they are also tied with Detroit for the second and final wild card spot. Washington and New Jersey lurk one and two points behind, respectively.