Malone to play tonight
By Karen Price
Tuesday, December 5, 2006
Forward Ryan Malone will be in the Penguins lineup against the Florida Panthers for the first time tonight since Oct. 21 when he broke his forearm in a game against the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Coach Michel Therrien confirmed after today's morning skate that Malone will play on a line with Evgeni Malkin and Nils Ekman.
"I'm excited to see him back and it's important for us for him to play some solid hockey," Therrien said.
Jordan Staal, meanwhile, will be a healthy scratch tonight for the first time this season.
"It's a development year for him," Therrien said. "We have a plan for him and we're sticking to our plan."
Of the two defensemen recalled on Monday, Therrien said that Alain Nasreddine will play tonight but Micki Dupont will not. Jocelyn Thibault will start in goal.
Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin continue to run Nos. 1 and 2 among forwards in voting for the Eastern Conference All-Stars starting lineup, Crosby with 401,365 votes and Malkin with 217,146.
Goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury, in first place last week, has slipped behind Buffalo’s Ryan Miller, 253,024-208,492 in the results released today. Voting remains open through Jan. 2.
Benching Jordan Staal for Ryan Malone? Great.