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A Closer Look at the Pittsburgh Penguins' Injuries

Yesterday we talked a little bit about Ryan Whitney's pending return to the lineup and touched upon a few other injuries in the system.  Today, we're going to take a look at the bigger picture and just how much an affect the injuries have on the Penguins.

Pittsburgh Penguins Injuries


Player Injury Type Injury Date
Mike Zigomanis upper body 12.14.2008
Maxime Talbot foot 12.15.2008

Out (IR / Out / Suspended / Physically unvailable)

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Hal Gill right shoulder 12.7.2008
Sergei Gonchar left shoulder surgery 9.25.2008
Tyler Kennedy sprained knee 12.5.2008
Ryan Whitney left foot surgery 9.20.2008

Up until a few days ago Marc-Andre Fleury was on that same list.  Can't say it's good to see name like Gonchar and Whitney on there, but we've come to terms with that earlier in the season.  I suppose the more recent upsets come from the addition of Max Talbot and Hal Gill.

Talbot is not your big scoring guy but he's going to grind it out.  He's a pretty crucial part of the PK unit and has even shown some signs of hope alongside Sid on the top lines.  Whatever this foot injury is, it has been nagging him all season.  I recall earlier in the year he took a shot off the heel and has even at times worn protective boots over his skates.  Apparently it's going to linger unless he takes some time off.  I'd rather him healthy for the playoffs.  No word on a return, but expected day-to-day.

Hal Gill is just a monster in front of the net and up until his injury was playing some phenomenal defense.  He kept the other team out of the crease, closed up some lanes and really worked in the corners.  Gonch and Whit aside, Gill is probably the worst injury on this list.  For a blue line that's already limping and showing the likes of a few rookies as well, Gill's shoulder injury couldn't have come at a worse time.  Expected back in another week or two.

And then there's Tyler Kennedy.  Last year around this time Kennedy was still making his presence known.  Nearly a month or so beforehand he made the jump to the parent club from the likes of Wilkes-Barre after the Pens sent Mark Recchi down.  This season, Kennedy flew out of the gate in Stockholm and kicked off the year with two goals.  Whether he's the perfect fit for Sid's wing, grinding it out on the third line or muscling guys out on the fourth, losing Kennedy is a pretty significant hit to the Pens.  Expected back mid to late January.

Let's also not forget Michael Zigomanis.  This guy is incredible on the faceoff  but it would almost seem he's found a full-time job on the injury list since joining from Phoenix.  A healthy Ziggy can make the difference though, especially on the PK when a defensive zone face-off win is pretty crucial.  Very little known about this injury, but something has been nagging him since joining the club.

If injuries keep mounting like this, it's more or less only a matter of time before the NHL drops the Pittsburgh title and just substitutes it with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.  Tim Wallace, Chris Minard, Alex Goligoski, Jeff Taffe, Janne Pesonen, John Curry, Connor James and Ben Lovejoy have all at some point this season received the call.  Some are still with the club.  But as the season wears on I'd prefer to see more demotions than promotions.

No offense to the WBS guys of course...