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Jeffrey looks to hang at center after the Penguins get healthy

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By Josh Yohe
Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2012

MONTREAL — When healthy, the Penguins are blessed with the finest collection of centers in hockey.

Center Dustin Jeffrey would like to remain in the lineup when centers Sidney Crosby and Jordan Staal return, and that might require more offensive punch than what he has produced so far. Jeffrey, who came back too early from ACL surgery in October, is finally healthy.

Now, he's waiting for the points to come.

Jeffrey has scored two goals and two assists in 18 games, and three of those points came in a Jan. 20 game against the Canadiens.

"The legs aren't the issue now," said Jeffrey, who said his knee is 100 percent. "Being able to make plays and protect the puck, those are the things I need to improve. I have to be better with the puck."

Jeffrey's defensive work has been solid, as evidenced by the fact that he entered Tuesday's game in Montreal at plus-1 despite producing limited offense.

"But I wouldn't say I'm satisfied," he said. "We need some secondary scoring. I have to be better."

> > Centers Sidney Crosby and Jordan Staal and defenseman Simon Despres skated for almost an hour at the Bell Centre on Tuesday. The trio took part in the team's optional morning skate, and then remained on the ice for nearly 30 minutes following the workout. Crosby, who spoke with the media Monday, will resume skating by himself starting this week. Staal could be back in the lineup as early as this weekend, though a return next might be a safer bet.

> > The Penguins still have not issued any information regarding the health of right winger Tyler Kennedy, who returned to Pittsburgh after being injured Sunday against New Jersey. Kennedy appeared to suffer a knee or leg injury. The team is expecting more information regarding Kennedy's status Wednesday.

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