Malkin Expected to Miss Saturday’s Game Against Flyers; Gonchar Questionable

Evgeni Malkin, Sergei Gonchar and Brent Johnson all missed the Penguins’ practice today at Southpointe.

Evgeni Malkin waits his turn to take part in a drill at a past practice at Mellon Arena

The Penguins are again expected to be without the services of Evgeni Malkin when they meet the Philadelphia Flyers tomorrow afternoon at Mellon Arena.

Malkin attempted to take the ice with his teammates this morning, but left practice after about 15 minutes. A foot injury is tough for any athlete, but it is even worse with the pressure of an ice skate.

I have had a bruised foot and even tying your shoe can cause extreme discomfort. I fully expect the Penguins to hold Malkin out until the foot is close to 100%. They cannot afford to have the injury flaring up during the playoffs, as any run would be significantly impacted if he is unable to go.

Sergei Gonchar missed today’s practice with the same illness that held him out of Wednesday night’s game in Washington. His status for tomorrow afternoon’s game will not be known until the morning.

Penguins back-up goaltender Brent Johnson also missed practice with what Dan Bylsma termed a “food illness.” A case of food poisoning is never good, but at least it doesn’t seem to be running rampant through the team.

Johnson is expected to be available for tomorrow afternoon.