NHL Preview from The Sports Network |
Friday, November 7th
(All times eastern)
Pittsburgh Penguins (3-5-3-0) at Florida Panthers (4-7-2-0), 7:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - Mario Lemieux could return to the lineup tonight when his
Pittsburgh Penguins take on the Florida Panthers at the Office Depot Center.
Lemieux, who missed Tuesday's 4-2 loss to Toronto, will take part in the
morning skate and then decide whether or not his hip flexor injury feels good
enough to go.
Without Lemieux, the Pens had a three-game unbeaten streak (2-0-1) snapped in
Toronto, as the Maple Leafs scored twice in the third period to provide the
difference. Rico Fata posted a goal and assisted on another for the Penguins,
and rookie Ryan Malone tallied for the second straight game.
Rookie Marc-Andre Fleury, making his fourth straight start, turned aside 34
shots for Pittsburgh, which dropped to 2-1-1 in its last four. The No. 1 pick
is 3-3-2 with a 2.21 goals-against average and .936 save percentage in his
first eight NHL games, and is slated to start this evening.
The Penguins, 1-3-1 on the road, kicked off a five-game trip Tuesday and will
visit Tampa on Saturday.
Florida, meanwhile, has lost the first two installments of a three-game
homestand, including a 3-2 defeat at the hands of Los Angeles on Wednesday.
Roberto Luongo stopped 32 shots in net and Nathan Horton and Mike Van Ryn
scored for the Panthers, who lost for the fourth consecutive time at home and
dropped to 1-4-1 this season in South Florida. Horton's tally was the second
in two games for the third overall pick in this year's draft.
On the injury front, winger Valeri Bure returned after missing 11 games
because of a groin injury and assisted on Van Ryn's goal.
The Panthers, who will honor the World Series-champion Florida Marlins this
evening, visit St. Louis on Saturday.
Florida went 4-0 against Pittsburgh last season, outscoring the Pens by a
combined 17-5 margin. The Cats have won five straight overall in the series
and taken the last four played in their building.
11/07 10:19:07 ET