Saturday, February 16, 2013

The Penguins look to battle back in Binghamton tonight against a 1st place Senators team decimated by call ups and coming off a 7-1 thrashing by Syracuse last night.

Expected Starting Goalies
Brad Thiessen (WBS): 9-9-1, 2.62 GAA, .902 SV%, 4 SO
Robin Lehner (BNG): 18-9-2, 2.02 GAA, .941 SV%, 3 SO

Breaking Down the Matchup

Binghamton: 1st Place East Division, 29-14-1-4= 63 points
PENGUINS: 3rd Place East Division, 25-21-2-1 = 53 points

There's still opportunity this weekend for the Penguins to creep back into East Division race.  The Penguins trail Binghamton by 10 points and Syracuse by nine entering tonight's games. 

Leading Scorers

Binghamton: Mike Hoffman (12G, 12A), Hugh Jessiman (9G, 13A), Corey Cowick (8G, 12A)
PENGUINS: Chad Kolarik (18G, 21A), Riley Holzapfel (16G, 15A), Trevor Smith (14G, 15A)

Penguins Connection?

The Penguins and Senators rematch tonight after the Senators took Mohegan Sun Arena by storm on Tuesday. The Penguins need to take advantage of an even more depleted Sens roster tonight.

For the Senators, it will be interesting to see who's in the lineup all the way through. Robin Lehner was torched for seven goals last night but is former Pens goalie (well for a brief time) Marc Cheverie ready for AHL action? Cheverie was acquired in the trade that sent defenseman Zbynek Michalek back to Phoenix, but became a free agent when the Penguins opted to sign Brad Theissen and Jeff Zatkoff.

Three more called up for the Senators as defenseman Eric Gryba and forwards Derek Grant and David Dziurzynski headed to Ottawa before last night's game.  The BSens added another former Penguin, forward David Marshall, to a PTO contract and recalled defenseman Ben Blood from Elmira this morning.

For the Penguins, Alex Grant never returned after an apparent head injury from a hit by Norfolk's Mat Clark. With the veteran rule as it is, it's likely Cody Wild will replace him in the lineup. With only 12 healthy forwards, the second veteran scratch will most likely a defenseman, so either Mark Eaton or Joey Mormina, who sat out last night, will not dress.

I would expect to see Brad Thiessen in net after Zatkoff played last night. Zatkoff stopped 11 of 12 last night so with a light workload it's also possible to see Zatkoff in net. I'll have the latest on who's starting for the Penguins tonight as well as updates of all the action and a recap with thoughts from the players and coaches shortly after the game. Follow on Twitter tonight with @H_P_Hockey.

Injured list: Tom Kuhnhackl (upper body), Paul Thompson (upper body), Phil Dupuis Alex Grant (upper body) and Steve MacIntyre

Expected lineup:




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