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Pens Points: New Year, Same Injuries

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Penguins usher in 2020 still battered but hoping a new year brings new injury luck. Welcome to your first Pens Points of 2020.

NHL: FEB 21 Sharks at Penguins Photo by Jeanine Leech/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

It was a rather quiet day around the NHL on New Year’s Day, with only the Dallas Stars and Nashville Predators in action at the Cotton Bowl in the Winter Classic. That all changes today with a flurry of games on the schedule, including the Penguins playing host to the San Jose Sharks at PPG Paints Arena.

Puck drop is scheduled for 7:00 PM and will be broadcast on AT&T Sports Network.

Here now, your inaugural Pens Points of 2020...

If only one thing changes for the Penguins in the new year, let’s hope it's their injury luck. After crashing head first into the boards in the final game of 2019, Jake Guentzel will now miss the first 4-6 months of 2020 with a shoulder injury. [Pensburgh]

Best case scenario for Jake Guentzel to return from his shoulder injury is four months and well into the Stanley Cup playoffs. It will be crucial for the Penguins to replace him in the lineup and some marquee names are already springing up. [Pensburgh]

There is no question the Guentzel injury is a serious blow to the Penguins on-ice performance, but it’s something the team has become accustomed to this season. As has been the case, it’s time for next man up once again. [Penguins]

One of the guys who will be asked to step up and take on a bigger role in the absence of Guentzel is Alex Galchenyuk. It’s been a positive few weeks for Galchenyuk, now he gets another shot to prove himself as he moves up the lineup. [Penguins]

From Tuesday, Sidney Crosby was back on the ice with teammates for the first time since undergoing sports hernia surgery. One catch however, Crosby was just taking advantage of some available ice time, not actually participating in practice. [Pensburgh]

The last decade of Penguins hockey featured many lows and highs, from the 2012 playoffs against the Flyers to winning consecutive Stanley Cups. There were also plenty of weird of moments packed into the last 10 years to fill in the gaps. [Pensburgh]

Last season, Evgeni Malkin was suspended for a high sticking incident against the Flyers. This season, he avoided that same fate after a similar incident against the Senators Monday night. Malkin was fined $5,000 for high sticking Jean-Gabriel Pageau. [Trib Live]

News and notes from around the NHL...

In one of the more entertaining Winter Classic games, the Dallas Stars rallied from an early two goal deficit to score four unanswered goals and defeat the Nashville Predators 4-2 at the historic Cotton Bowl in Dallas. [NBC Sports]

During an intermission of this year’s Winter Classic, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman announced the 2021 Winter Classic will be hosted by the Minnesota Wild at Target Field in Minneapolis against a to be determined opponent. [NHL]