Injured Penguins defensemen Kris Letang, Brian Dumoulin not on weekend trip
BUFFALO, N.Y. – As of Monday afternoon’s NHL trade deadline, Pittsburgh Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford was holding out hope that his team could see at least one injured defenseman back in the lineup by this weekend.
That won’t happen.
Neither Kris Letang nor Brian Dumoulin made the trip as the Penguins visit Buffalo on Friday night and Montreal on Saturday.
Coach Mike Sullivan said Dumoulin (concussion) skated on his own Thursday. Letang (upper body) has yet to resume skating.
“They’re both making progress,” Sullivan said.
The Penguins will make two changes to their lineup from a 5-2 win in Columbus on Tuesday night.
On defense, newly acquired Erik Gudbranson will make his Penguins debut, taking the place of Chad Ruhwedel (upper body) on a pair with Marcus Petersson.
At forward, Teddy Blueger will fill the hole left by Bryan Rust’s lower-body injury. Blueger, who was called up from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Thursday, will skate on the fourth line with Matt Cullen and Garrett Wilson. Dominik Simon will slot into Rust’s third-line right-wing position with Jared McCann and Nick Bjugstad.
Matt Murray is expected to start in net.
Jonathan Bombulie is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jonathan by email at email@example.com or via Twitter .