Penguins’ Sidney Crosby poised to welcome Evgeni Malkin into NHL’s 1,000-point club
When Evgeni Malkin woke up on the morning of Feb. 1, he was smarting from a violent check delivered by Tampa Bay’s Dan Girardi the night before.
He still needed 15 points to become the 88th player in NHL history to record 1,000 for his career, and between the upper-body injury he just suffered and the long scoring slump that had eaten up most of this season, there was no guarantee he would hit the milestone this year.
Teammate Sidney Crosby never doubted him, though.
He knew he would have company in the 1,000-point club soon enough.
Since returning from the injury, Malkin has seven goals and 11 points in his last nine games. He has 996 points for his career and could hit four digits any day now, perhaps even as soon as Tuesday night against the Florida Panthers.
“Everyone goes through tough stretches at different points of the year,” Crosby said. “You can see the way he’s playing right now. He’s doing some really good things, creating a lot, scoring some goals. It’s always a matter of time when things like that happen.”
Crosby credited his longtime teammate for staying positive throughout the season’s most trying times.
“He’s always energetic. He’s always positive,” Crosby said. “I think it’s one of those things where everyone goes through that. Everyone can relate to that. It’s not ever easy. Especially with the expectations for him being so high, I can relate to that. You just try to support him. You know he’s going to come out of it.”
Jonathan Bombulie is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jonathan by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter .