Opponents targeting Penguins star Malkin with plenty of size
The Penguins' Evgeni Malkin was targeted by the Buffalo Sabres' biggest forward Sunday, a familiar approach for stopping the league's scoring leader. But that strategy isn't working as well as it once did, coach Dan Bylsma said Monday.
"Geno has done a real good job with guys who have targeted him physically," he said. "In the past years, he may have responded after the whistle in a way that was probably detrimental to his game. He's really been focused."
The Sabres matched Malkin's line with forwards Paul Gaustad, Patrick Kaleta and Nathan Gerbe, with the 6-foot-5, 212-pound Gaustad shadowing the Penguins star. Malkin had five shots and assisted on Deryk Engelland's goal, but it was his third straight game without a goal.
Bylsma said Malkin has learned to better use his body to create space and protect the puck. At 6-3, Malkin is hardly small.
"He wins the physical battle a lot of times," Bylsma said. "That's something that, playing against a bigger body like Gaustad, he's going to have to deal with. But he still creates the room and still creates scoring opportunities."
> > Malkin, forwards James Neal and Matt Cooke and defenseman Brooks Orpik did not participate in Monday's practice. Bylsma said they were missing for maintenance days of "varying degrees" and are suffering from "varying bumps and bruises" that might cause a lineup change today against the New York Rangers. Cooke's left arm was hit by a Chris Kunitz shot Sunday.
> > Forward Eric Tangradi was recalled from AHL Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. He's scoreless in 12 games with the Penguins this season.
> > As expected, captain Sidney Crosby did not practice with the team, instead skating beforehand.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Penguins notebook: Sheary hoping to return to organization
- Downie, Ehrhoff lead list of likely Penguins leaving in free agency
- Penguins deflect trade inquiries, decide to stand pat during NHL Draft
- No team did less than Penguins at NHL Draft
- Scouts think Penguins could regain luster with minor tinkering
- Penguins bringing back defenseman Cole with 3-year extension
- Penguins take winger Sprong in 2nd round, add 3 more forwards in NHL Draft
- NHL sets salary cap for 2015-16 league year
- Letang misses out on Masterton, Price wins Hart
- Rossi: Gonchar is what Pens need
- Penguins notebook: GM Rutherford seeks balance at forward