Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury may have a concussion and will miss Wednesday’s game against the Boston Bruins and right-winger Beau Bennett will miss four to six weeks with an upper body, head coach Mike Sullivan said after the team’s practice session on Tuesday.
Sullivan said he did not know when Fleury was injured, but that it happened sometime during the team’s 4-1 loss to the Washington Capitals on Monday night.
“He came to us last night and said he wasn’t feeling right,” Sullivan said through the team’s social media accounts. “He’s being tested but there’s a possibility it’s a concussion.”
Fleury made 30 saves in the losing effort. He had a goal waived off in the second period when Washington forward Jason Williams made contact with Fleury in the crease before the shot came in. On the season, Fleury has been one of the Penguins’ most productive players. He has a .925 save percentage through 25 games. Backup Jeff Zatkoff will likely assume the starting reigns for now.
Bennett’s mechanism of injury is much more easily defined. Late in the first period, Bennett was playing the puck near the right-wing boards at the top of the offensive zone. After making a pass, Bennett was hit by Capitals forward T.J. Oshie and was catapulted into the wall.
Bennett immediately left the ice accompanied by trainers and did not return. Bennett has a long history of injuries dating back to his collegiate career, but was just starting to settle into a role on the Penguins first line alongside Sidney Crosby and Chris Kunitz. Bennett had four points in his previous five games before being injured on Monday.
The Penguins will need to call up a forward and a goaltender from their American Hockey League affiliate in Wilkes-Barre by Wednesday.
Reigning AHL goaltender of the year Matt Murray is a logical candidate to replace Fleury on the roster. Murray has a .938 save percentage and a 1.84 goals-against average in 17 games with the AHL Penguins this season.
Leading Wilkes-Barre/Scranton in scoring are 21-year old Czech rookie Dominik Simon and 23-year old Conor Sheary. Both players have 25 points in 24 games. Neither has any NHL experience.
Sheary is in his second pro season out of UMass, while Simon was a fifth-round draft pick in this May’s NHL draft.
Right-winger Scott Wilson leads the team in goals with 14. He and centers Kael Mouillierat and Kevin Porter would bring more NHL experience to the lineup.
The Penguins and Bruins face off at 8 p.m. at the TD Garden in Boston on Wednesday. The game will be televised on NBCSN.
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