Penguins forward Nick Bjugstad sidelined ‘longer term’
Penguins forward Nick Bjugstad will be sidelined “longer term” because of an undisclosed ailment, coach Mike Sullivan said.
Injured in Friday’s 2-1 road loss to the New Jersey Devils, Bjugstad missed Saturday’s 6-1 home win against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
In 10 games this season, Bjugstad has one goal. He missed nine games in October with an undisclosed injury.
Forward Patric Hornqvist participated in the morning skate Tuesday at PPG Paints Arena but did not join in line rushes and will not play against the New York Islanders, Sullivan said.
“I feel good,” Hornqvist said. “It’s fun to be back on the ice and practice with the guys and see if I can keep up. Day by day from now on.”
After practicing Sunday in a gray non-contact jersey, Hornqvist donned a normal jersey Tuesday and operated with no restrictions.
“We did all the steps through and today was the first practice with contact, getting used to getting hit,” Hornqvist said. “It felt good. I’m taking the right steps. Hopefully, I can play here soon.”
Defenseman Kris Letang took the ice alone prior to the morning skate.
“He’s making progress,” Sullivan said. “The fact that he’s been on the ice a number of times now … he’s getting closer. Obviously, he’s not close enough to join the team yet. When he makes that jump, you’ll know he’s close.”
• Matt Murray is expected to start in net for the Penguins. In 16 games, he has a 9-4-2 record, 2.37 goals-against average, .913 save percentage and one shutout.
• The Penguins’ lines and pairs during the morning skate were:
Jake Guentzel – Evgeni Malkin – Bryan Rust
Dominik Kahun – Jared McCann – Brandon Tanev
Alex Galchenyuk – Joseph Blandisi – Dominik Simon
Zach Aston-Reese – Teddy Blueger – Sam Lafferty
Brian Dumoulin – John Marino
Marcus Pettersson – Justin Schultz
Jack Johnson – Juuso Riikola
• Their first power-play unit was composed of Galchenyuk, Guentzel, Malkin, Rust and Schultz. The second unit included Aston-Reese, Kahun, McCann, Pettersson and Riikola.
• Goaltender Semyon Varlamov is expected to start for the Islanders. He is 6-2-1 with a 2.56 goals-against average, .917 save percentage and one shutout.
Seth Rorabaugh is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Seth by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .