Penguins notebook: Jeffrey hoping to strut stuff on 2nd line
By Josh Yohe
Published: Tuesday, March 12, 2013, 9:33 p.m.
With center Evgeni Malkin out of the lineup for at least a few more days, the Penguins are showing confidence in center Dustin Jeffrey.
Jeffrey is centering the second line between right wing James Neal and left wing Beau Bennett. Earlier this season, when Malkin missed four games with a concussion, the Penguins instead moved third line center Brandon Sutter to the second line.
Not this time.
They've elected to leave the first and third lines intact, trusting Jeffrey to handle second line responsibility.
“I feel like I've played well,” Jeffrey said. “All the feedback from the coaching staff has been positive. I had a couple of good chances against the Islanders. I'm getting quality chances. You get more concerned when you're not getting those kinds of chances.”
Jeffrey enjoyed his best game as an NHL player against the Bruins two years ago, when he scored twice, including the overtime winner in Boston.
He hopes to duplicate that kind of success soon.
“I had a couple of chances last game that were so close,” he said. “Just want to finish off one of these.”
What a move
Center Sidney Crosby was watching Monday night when Ottawa's Kaspars Daugavins attempted an unorthodox move during his team's shootout loss against Boston. Crosby didn't have a problem with it.
Daugavins used the toe of his stick to pin the puck while skating toward the net before executing a 360 degree spin, only to have his shot stopped by Boston goalie Tuukka Rask.
“We can't see the same moves night in, night out,” Crosby said. “It's nice to see someone try something different.”
Penguins broadcaster Phil Bourque attempted such a move against the Detroit Red Wings on Dec. 16, 1990. On a breakaway, Bourque used the toe end of his stick, only to be stopped.
The Penguins showed video of the goal at Consol Energy Center before the game.
Kelly still out
The Bruins were without center Chris Kelly on Tuesday. Kelly was injured the night before when he absorbed a hit from Senators forward Chris Neil. Boston coach Claude Julien said the swelling in Kelly's knee was still so significant that it was difficult to determine just how severe the injury might be.
Julien said the Bruins are anticipating the injury isn't serious, but it would be premature to confirm that until the swelling alleviates.
Malkin skated on his own before the Penguins had their morning skate.
It remains unknown when he will return to the lineup, but coach Dan Bylsma said he will miss “one-to-two” weeks with an upper-body injury suffered Saturday in Toronto. The injury is to Malkin's right shoulder.
The Penguins are carrying eight defensemen, which means two must be scratched every night.
Bylsma opted to sit Simon Despres and Robert Bortuzzo against the Bruins.
The Penguins are 15-4 with Despres in the lineup this season and entered Tuesday's game with a 3-4 record when he doesn't play.
For a good cause
Some Penguins fans were probably startled when the home team took the ice for warm-ups Tuesday night, but it was for a good cause.
The Penguins wore special pink and purple sweaters during pregame warm-ups before taking on the Bruins.
The sweaters will be donated to the UPMC Cancer Center.
Looking at Iginla?
According to a report in the Calgary Herald, the Penguins were one of nine teams to have a scout on hand for Monday's game between the Flames and the Los Angeles Kings.
The Penguins have been rumored to be interested in Calgary winger Jarome Iginla, a free agent following the season.
Josh Yohe is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter @JoshYohe_Trib.
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