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WBS PENGUINS PRACTICE REPORT 3/21
The Penguins took to the ice at the Coal Street Rink this morning around 10:30 for practice.
Besides Keven Veilleux and Boris Valabik (both out for season) only one roster player was missing from practice today, defenseman Alexandre Picard. I got to speak with WBS Penguins head coach John Hynes after practice and he told me Picard missed practice today for, "personal reasons."
Don't want to look into a situation too much but Jason Williams also missed practices and games this past week due to personal reasons. Could the Pens be without Picard this weekend? I'll ask coach Hynes about his status for this weekend after practice tomorrow.
Despite the session only lasting a little over an hour, it was an up tempo practice with a few odd man rushes and drills, etc. Here are some of the lines I jotted down during practice:
McDonald - Lerg - O'Reilly
Petersen - Street - Walker
Craig - Gibbons - Williams
DeFazio - Rust - Thompson
Sill - MacIntyre
Bortuzzo - Strait
Despres - Mormina
Grant - Wild
Sneep - Samuelsson
Don't read too much into Zach Sill not practicing with a regular threesome today, with 14 forwards on the roster two forwards need to be a healthy scratch and I would imagine that MacIntyre, Rust and DeFazio would be likely candidates.
NEWS OUT OF PITTSBURGH (NHL)
With Sidney Crosby back in action in Pittsburgh, the initial thought was that Eric Tangradi could be re-assigned to the WBS Penguins. Unfortunately for Penguins fans, Joe Vitale was banged up in last Sunday's game against the Devils and missed last night's game against the Winnipeg Jets.
Pittsburgh has both Dustin Jeffrey and Richard Park on the active roster but both have been scratches the past few weeks. Park hasn't played since March 9th. Jeffrey has been out of game action since February 26th.
The other news out of Pittsburgh is that Brent Johnson skated in full pads with some of the coaching staff an hour before the NHL Penguins practice this afternoon at Southpointe. This might mean Johnson's taking the next step into getting closer to a return to the lineup. Could Brad Thiessen have played his last NHL game this season and be re-assigned to the AHL in April?
We'll have to wait and see on some personnel but the AHL Penguins practice again tomorrow before a three-game weekend home stand. If any news breaks, I'll have first reactions on the blog's Twitter handle. Follow us on Twitter for up to the minute updates on the AHL's Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins