Coming off a 5-2 win against the Florida Panthers two days ago, the Pittsburgh Penguins will be looking to extend their regular season record to 4-0.
The Florida Panthers (1-2) will host the Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday at 7:30. While the Panthers will be playing their second game in a back-to-back stretch, the game will still be very entertaining to watch.
The Penguins practiced Thursday afternoon in Southpointe and the practice lines were the same as the game against the Carolina Hurricanes:
Chris Kunitz – Sidney Crosby – Pascal Dupuis
Jussi Jokinen – Evgeni Malkin – Beau Bennett
Dustin Jeffrey – Brandon Sutter – Chuck Kobasew
Tanner Glass – Joe Vitale – Craig Adams
Brooks Orpik – Paul Martin
Rob Scuderi – Matt Niskanen
Olli Maatta – Robert Bortuzzo/Deryk Engelland
And while the lines do look the same as they have all season, a few question marks still pop up that will eventually announced later in the day by head coach Dan Byslma.
One of questions marks that will be crucial to the match-up is if Jeff Zatkoff or Marc-Andre Fleury will be in net against the Panthers Friday night. Marc-Andre Fleury has been dominant this season with a 1.00 GAA and .963 save percentage. While on the other hand, Zatkoff would be earning his first NHL start in goal.
Another mystery is if defenseman Deryk Engelland will finally be in his first game of the season. In the first three games this regular-season, Engelland has been benched for the likes of rookie Olli Maatta and Robert Bortuzzo. If not Friday against Florida, look for Engelland to get some action in their next three games.
The Florida Panthers, while they do have a losing record, have shown some positive steps in strengthening their regular-season efforts this year.
The lines may change for tomorrow’s game, but here are the lines that the Panthers are rolling with against the Tampa Bay Lightning tonight:
Jonathan Huberdeau – Shawn Matthias – Kris Versteeg
Tomas Fleischmann – Aleksander Barkov – Tomas Kopecky
Scottie Upshall – Marcel Goc – Brad Boyes
Joey Crabb – Scott Gomez – Jesse Winchester
Brian Campbell – Mike Weaver
Erik Gudbranson – Tom Gilbert
Dmitry Kulikov – Ryan Whitney
For the goaltender spot, the Florida Panthers decided to start Jacob Markstrom, the 6-foot-6 netminder from Sweden. It is still yet to be determined whether the Panthers will start Markstrom, veteran Tim Thomas or Scott Clemmensen in goal.
While Tim Thomas, former Stanley Cup winner with the Boston Bruins, has been used as the starting goaltender for Florida, he is day-to-day with a groin injury and could very well be absent for Friday’s contest.
The game at BB&T Center will be a 7:30 game and can be watched live on RDS2 and Root Sports. You can also find a link to listen to the game on radio via the Pittsburgh Penguins official team website.