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Breaking: Sullivan announces a long-awaited healthy scratch tonight

Finally!

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One of the more confusing storylines since the early summer of 2017 has been the acquisition of Ryan Reaves by Pittsburgh Penguins general manager Ryan Reaves.

The price paid was nowhere near worth what he brings to the table. And what he brings is grit. An enforcer-type play that has been largely phased out of the league.

It's certainly not the type of play the Penguins are known for, and so he doesn't fit the prototypical mold of this squad. What's been even more confusing is how much ice time he gets.

Which is almost completely negligible. 

He regularly plays under 5 minutes, and generally under 8 at the most. Why pay a first round pick to the St. Louis Blues for this type of player, especially if he's going to be used sparingly?

Reaves admitted himself that he was a "bit surprised" that the Penguins would pay that price for him. When the player knows he's not worth the price paid for him, this becomes an even bigger head scratcher.

In any event - Reaves has suited up for every game this season, despite the low ice time. 

With Bryan Rust poised to join the lineup (he's officially a game-time decision but it appears that he'll be in), Reaves will finally be a healthy scratch, according to Pittsburgh Post-Gazette's Jason Mackey.

It will be interesting to see if Mike Sullivan brings him back to the lineup, once he sees what the roster looks like without this outlier.

Reaves has his fans, so if you're one of them reading this, please feel free to share your perception of him and why you disagree with him sitting out.

One thing is for sure, Reaves can drop the gloves, which always brings energy to the team and the crowd.

PENGUINS NOTES

Casey DeSmith has been given a 3rd consecutive start after two excellent performances. Sullivan is riding the hot glove, while Murray continues to prepare himself to get back into game action.

“The last couple of games Casey has started, he’s been very, very good,” Sullivan said, according to Mackey. “We feel as though as this point we’re going to ride him a little bit.”

The head coach also had some encouraging words about Daniel Sprong, who was recently sent back to the AHL.

“He’s a very good player,” Sullivan said. “We’re really excited about the traction that he’s made and the progress that he’s made. But we don’t want him sitting on the sidelines. We want him to play. Nothing’s etched in stone. We have the ability with the way the CBA works and where he is in his career to call him up and down as often as we’d like to utilize him. Those are decisions that our coaching staff and management team will make on a game-by-game basis. I think it’s important that Daniel continues to play in games, so that he can continue to make the progress that he’s made.”