A few news and notes on game day:
—Big opportunity tonight for Evan Rodrigues, who will kick up to the Penguins second line against the Rangers due to Jared McCann being ruled out. The good news, however, is coach Mike Sullivan classified McCann as having a “day to day” injury.
It’s a big chance for Rodrigues to moonlight on a scoring line and see what he can do to help the recent red-hot streaks by Evgeni Malkin and Kasperi Kapanen.
Rodrigues on playing alongside Malkin: "G is such an elite player and likes to have the puck on his stick, so it's just getting open and knowing he'll find me if I put myself in good spots."— Pens Inside Scoop (@PensInsideScoop) March 9, 2021
—Mike Sullivan announced Tristan Jarry starts tonight against the Rangers, even after Casey DeSmith was again solid on Sunday. The Penguins are no doubt “giving Jarry the ball” right now, so to say, and seeing just how far he will run with it. With the exception of back-to-back situations with games on consecutive days, Jarry has started every game for the Pens now since February 14th. In those 10 games he has a 7-3 record with a 2.59 GAA and a .919 save%.
Pittsburgh does have another back-to-back next Monday-Tuesday against Boston, but until then the net looks like it’s Jarry’s if he keeps holding up his end of the bargain like he has for the past month.
—Colton Sceviour cleared waivers and was removed from the COVID protocol list, which answers the first question about what comes next for him. The Pens have not immediately announced any plans just yet.
The options are:
A) play Sceviour tonight as normal, being as McCann is out and they need a forward to put into the lineup that didn’t play last game
B) put Sceviour on the taxi squad or assign him to the AHL and save cap money...Which also means tonight’s fourth line would include Sam Lafferty and Anthony Angello with Mark Jankowski
No NHL team took Sceviour off the Pens’ hands for free, so that didn’t make GM Ron Hextall’s job simple. But in the long run, Pittsburgh probably doesn’t mind all that much if a player like Sceviour hangs around the taxi squad for situations like they’re in now when they need an extra body to plug in for fourth line duties when they have an injury. Still, the upgrade for forward depth and at the bottom of the lineup is going to have to happen with an external addition sooner than later, but it looks like Sceviour will be sticking around in the Pittsburgh organization in some capacity for a bit longer.