Reinforcements On The Way 2.0

Sunday, December 29, 2013
Harry Zolnierczyk is one of three players who could return to the AHL Penguins in the very near future.
EDIT: The Pens, yesterday, put Evgeni Malkin on retroactive IR to when he first was out of the lineup to activate Scuderi and avoid trimming the roster. 

Both Malkin and Kris Letang have been reported as being close to making a return, which still means two players will be on their way down to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (AHL) as long as other injuries don't arise. Whether either of Malkin or Letang return to the lineup tomorrow night against New Jersey remains to be seen.

So in all, the WBS Penguins should see Brian Dumoulin back and a forward, Gibbons or Zolnierczyk, when Malkin and Letang are ready to return.

The rest of yesterday's post is still intact for a look at the specifics and Pittsburgh's roster overview after the jump. 

Tanner Glass and Brooks Orpik have returned from injury and the five game suspension to Deryk Engelland has been served. The Pittsburgh Penguins are starting to get bodies back.  With Evgeni Malkin and Robert Scuderi eying a return to the NHL Pens lineup, some guys could be headed back to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins as early as today.

The NHL club currently has 31 players on the roster, and is currently at the 23-man active roster limit. The eight players currently on injured reserve (forwards Evgeni Malkin, Pascal Dupuis, Jayson Megna, Andrew Ebbett and Beau Bennett, defensemen Robert Scuderi Paul Martin and Kris Letang and goaltender Tomas Vokoun) don't count against the 23-man roster.

Currently, Pittsburgh has seven eight healthy defensemen:
Brooks Orpik, Rob Scuderi Matt Niskanen, Olli Maatta, Simon Despres, Robert Bortuzzo, Deryk Engelland and Brian Dumoulin

Up front, Pittsburgh has 13 healthy forwards and Evgeni Malkin, who is reported as being close to a return as well:
Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin (day-to-day), James Neal, Chris Kunitz, Jussi Jokinen, Brandon Sutter, Joe Vitale, Craig Adams, Tanner Glass, Chuck Kobasew, Zach Sill, Brian Gibbons and Harry Zolnierczyk.
When Malkin is ready to return to the NHL lineup, which could be as early as New Year's Eve against the New Jersey Devils, Pittsburgh will have 14 able forwards. I would expect one of Brian Gibbons or Harry Zolnierczyk to be re-assigned if that is indeed the case.


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