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Pens Points: More Delays

COVID keeps the Penguins on the sidelines into the new year. In the meantime, Pens Points is here to keep you up to date on the latest team news.

NHL: DEC 19 Penguins at Devils Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

If it weren’t for COVID-19 tearing through the NHL, the Pittsburgh Penguins and Toronto Maple Leafs should have been taking the ice later tonight in Toronto. That game became the latest victim of virus postponements and the Penguins must wait a little longer to return to game action. With Friday’s game against Ottawa now off as well, the earliest the Penguins could return is Sunday, January 2nd.

You won’t find a better duo than Wednesday and Pens Points...

Coming into Tuesday, the Penguins had lost four games to COVID postponement. That number increased to five when the NHL announced their contest against the Ottawa Senators scheduled for New Year’s Eve has been postponed. [NHL]

Taxi squads have returned to the NHL and the Penguins are taking advantage with four players being recalled from the AHL. Forward Kasper Bjorkqvist, defensemen Juuso Riikola and Pierre-Olivier Joseph, and goaltender Louis Domingue were added. [Penguins]

This past year was another good year for captain Sidney Crosby. In 2021, Crosby played in 73 games and totaled 80 points. This marks the 15th time in Crosby’s career that he went a full calendar year averaging above a point per game. [Pensburgh]

One silver lining the this COVID layoff for the Penguins is it has given injured players to opportunity to get healthy without missing additional game time. We already know Evgeni Malkin is close, but now it appears Bryan Rust is nearing a return as well. [Trib Live]

In addition to Malkin and Rust, Jake Guentzel is also on the comeback trail and is on track to make his own return sooner rather than later. These lineup returns couldn’t come at a better time with a handful of players now out because of virus protocols. [Penguins]

News and notes from around the NHL...

It was reported that many NHL players has become weary at the prospect of playing in the Olympics. It’s safe to say Brad Marchand was not one of those players after he openly ripped how the NHL handled the league’s exit from the upcoming Games. [ESPN]