Penguins Notebook: Malkin skates alone ... for now
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Although the Penguins have no updated timetable for rookie center Evgeni Malkin's return, he skated alone yesterday before his teammates held their morning skate. He is expected to accompany the Penguins to Buffalo, where he might skate with the team in practice but won't play tonight.
Malkin got a dislocated left shoulder Sept. 20.
"Maybe by the end of the weekend, we'll have something new," general manager Ray Shero said. "But he's making progress, which is good."
TV host a referee
Players and coaches have been miked during games. Broadcasters have called games from ice level.
Last night was a first, though, as Canadian hockey studio analyst Ron MacLean donned a striped shirt with orange armbands and served as a referee in the second and third periods of the Penguins game against Buffalo at Mellon Arena.
MacLean, host of CBC's popular "Hockey Night in Canada," is a certified referee in Canadian junior hockey. He was paired on the ice with NHL senior vice president and director of officiating Stephen Walkom, a former referee who lives in Moon.
In his television role, MacLean -- also known as Don Cherry's straight man -- has been critical of NHL officiating. His time working the game was uneventful.
Regular NHL referees Kevin Pollock and Chris Rooney worked the first period.
For their second and last home preseason game, the Penguins dressed most of their "name" players in what could be close to their regular-season roster. The healthy players who sat out were forwards Dan Carcillo, Michel Ouellet, Maxim Talbot and Andre Roy, defensemen Josef Melichar and Rob Scuderi, and goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury. ... Although 11,610 seats were sold, actual attendance was about 8,000. ... The seven healthy players who are not expected to travel to Buffalo for tonight's exhibition finale are forwards Sidney Crosby, John LeClair, Mark Recchi and Nils Ekman, defensemen Mark Eaton and Sergei Gonchar, and goaltender Jocelyn Thibault.Peter Diana, Post-Gazette
Sidney Crosby is knocked to the ice in last night's game against the Sabres.
Click photo for larger image.
First Published September 30, 2006 12:00 am