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Countdown to Opening Night
Penguins vs. CheckersOctober 7th, 2017
79 days to go.
A fan blog about the AHL's Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins
Well, it’s the end of December and if you have followed the Pittsburgh Penguins organization from top to bottom, you know that this is the season for injuries.
You already knew that Chad Ruhwedel and Derrick Pouliot were up in Pittsburgh, but on Tuesday night, Brian Dumoulin took a puck to the face which broke his jaw. He’s out 4-6 weeks. He’ll likely be on a liquid diet as his jaw heals which means he will lose weight and muscle mass. Once he’s okay to eat solid food again, he’ll need to regain all that weight he lost and gain back the muscle and get his wind back. Depending on how all that goes, it could be 6 weeks, it could be longer.
David Warsofsky was recalled Wednesday and was a scratch in Pittsburgh’s 3-2 win over the Carolina Hurricanes.
Matt Murray started that game and was mysteriously replaced in goal in the third period by Marc-Andre’ Fleury. Murray was on the bench for the third, but on Thursday it was revealed that he is week to week with a lower body injury.
There go those benign terms again. Hockey will always be a niche sport in America unless or until owners start disclosing what the injury is and the time frame for recovery (like Dumoulin’s injury) beyond that, any run of the mill sports fan has no time for body, “injury” and “day-to-day.” Aren’t we all?
Tristan Jarry was recalled from Wilkes-Barre Thursday evening. In the same release, and little bit of a silver lining for a Wilkes-Barre club that only has six defensemen on its roster, Pittsburgh sent Derrick Pouliot back to Coal Street.
Jarry is 13-5 with a 2.15 GAA and a .921 save percentage in the AHL and was second in the league in wins at the time of his recall.
It’s Casey DeSmith’s team for now here in Wilkes-Barre. The only question which remained was which goaltender was going to be recalled from ECHL Wheeling. The Nailers have Doug Carr and Sean Maguire. Maguire is on an NHL contract and should be a mainstay in Wilkes-Barre soon.
Well, it was Doug Carr that Wilkes-Barre signed to a professional tryout agreement and not Maguire, which the Penguins could have recalled.
This is a good thing. The reason why is because Maguire is at a key point in his development, just recently being cleared to play from his injury in the Fall. Calling him up to have him sit and hold a clipboard watching DeSmith play does nothing for his development when he can get reps and carry the load in Wheeling.
Carr is 8-7-1 in 17 games for the Nailers and has a 3.31 goals against average and a .889 save percentage. He recorded a shutout against the Kalamazoo Wings this season.
The Coal Street press release linked above has more, including the time he played two periods of preseason play for the Penguins against Hershey and didn’t allow a goal and his numbers with Albany last year in a similar situation that he is in now.
Personally, I think the Penguins will be fine, but I say that every year when the injuries start. By mid-March when Wilkes-Barre is mired in a four game losing streak because they are calling guys up from Wheeling every day and losing guys to Pittsburgh every hour, my tone may be different.
But we have seen this fish before.
DeSmith was likely getting the start Friday against Providence anyway, a team on a roll that Casey owns anyhow.
Gameday setup for tomorrow’s game against the aforementioned Bruins will be on the blog Friday at 3.