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Penguins notebook: Malkin on verbal abuse: 'It was my fault'

| Thursday, Jan. 24, 2013, 2:14 p.m.
Christopher Horner
Toronto's Mike Komisarek collides with the Penguins' Evgeni Malkin next to the Maple Leafs' goal during the first period Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2013 at Consol Energy Center. (Christopher Horner | Tribune-Review)

Center Evgeni Malkin is taking ownership of his unprofessional behavior at the end of the Penguins' 5-2 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs at Consol Energy Center on Wednesday.

Malkin was tagged with a game misconduct penalty after the game for verbally abusing an on-ice official. He was not suspended for the incident.

“Of course I tried to talk to him in English,” Malkin said, jokingly, Thursday after the Penguins practiced at Consol Energy Center.

“I'm really mad at a couple (of) calls, but … I lose control. It was bad emotion. It was my fault.”

The Penguins were penalized 10 times against Toronto, including Malkin's misconduct and an unsportsmanlike conduct minor for captain Sidney Crosby.

• Wednesday marked another big day of support by Penguins fans. The game between the Penguins and Maple Leafs registered a 15.12 Nielsen rating for Root Sports Pittsburgh, translating to approximately 453,000 viewers throughout the region. It was the third most-watched regular-season game in Penguins history. Games last weekend at Philadelphia (NBC) and New York (Root) were watched by about 950,000, Nielsen reported.

• Also on Wednesday, the Penguins reported around $500,000 in merchandise sales at the PensGear stores at Consol Energy Center and SouthSide Works. Merchandise was sold at a 50-percent discount. That will continue on days of the next three home games.

• Coach Dan Bylsma on his decision to select LW Chris Kunitz as an alternate captain for home games: “He's a guy who has emerged on our team as a leader. With how he plays, he's a respected guy in that dressing room. He's not a real vocal guy, but he does speak and he does carry a lot of weight in our room. He certainly carries a lot of weight on the ice.” Kunitz (home) and D Brooks Orpik (road) will share alternate captain duties.

— Rob Rossi

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