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Penguins notebook: Carter Rowney skates without restrictions, not ruled out for game vs. Canucks

Jerry DiPaola
| Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2017, 7:21 p.m.
The Penguins' Carter Rowney checks the Rangers' Ryan McDonagh during the first period Oct. 17, 2017, in New York.
Getty Images
The Penguins' Carter Rowney checks the Rangers' Ryan McDonagh during the first period Oct. 17, 2017, in New York.
The Penguins' Carter Rowney defends on the Predators' Mattias Ekholm in the third period Saturday, Oct. 7, 2017 at PPG Paints Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Penguins' Carter Rowney defends on the Predators' Mattias Ekholm in the third period Saturday, Oct. 7, 2017 at PPG Paints Arena.

Penguins winger Carter Rowney practiced without restrictions Tuesday, and he later reported his broken hand did not hold him back.

“It's just getting back to the pace (of the game) and making those quick decisions,” he said. “I don't think it's anything with my hand now.”

The next step is to see how it feels Wednesday morning, several hours before the Penguins will play the Vancouver Canucks at PPG Paints Arena. He has not been ruled out of the game.

“I just have to be smart ... stay patient,” he said. “I feel like I'm getting close. I want to be back as quick as possible. Now, we'll see how (the hand) reacts.”

Coach Mike Sullivan said he will consult with doctors Wednesday morning.

“Certainly, it's encouraging, the progress that he's made,” he said.

PK help on the way?

Rowney's return could help the Penguins' penalty-killing unit.Before he got hurt, in nine games, he averaged 3 minutes, 30 seconds of shorthanded ice time per game, which is among team leaders. During those 31 minutes of penalty-killing time, the Penguins gave up only two goals.

‘Penguins' for a day

The Penguins welcomed five youngsters from Make-A-Wish Foundation to spend the day with the team before and after its practice session at UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex in Cranberry. General Manager Jim Rutherford signed them to unofficial contracts, and they spent time on the ice with several players, including Sidney Crosby and Jake Guentzel.

Signing up to be Penguins for a day were Colton, Joseph, Raymond, Jason and Logan who are part of Make-A-Wish chapters in Western Pennsylvania, West Virginia, South Carolina and the Atlantic Provinces of Canada.

“They would have stayed out (on the ice) all day,” Crosby said. “It's great to see they're having fun. We enjoy having them.”

Collecting for a cause

Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation and local police officers will collect funds to help the family of fallen Officer Brian Shaw when the Penguins meet the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday night at PPG Paints Arena.

Officer Shaw was a member of New Kensington Police Department for less than a year when he was fatally shot in the line of duty Friday.

The foundation, which will make a $10,000 donation on behalf of the Penguins organization and its fans, is accepting online donations at pittsburghpenguinsfoundation.org through Dec. 5.

Donations also can be made at any First National Bank or by mail to: First National Bank, 110 Burrell Plaza, Lower Burrell, PA, 15068.

Jerry DiPaola is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at jdipaola@tribweb.com or via Twitter @JDiPaola_Trib.

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