The Pittsburgh Penguins were handed another hard blow on Tuesday when the team announced that top forward Jake Guentzel underwent successful shoulder surgery after a nasty collision with the boards last night while scoring his 20th goal of the season in the contest against the Ottawa Senators.
He is expected to miss four to six months of action.
Injuries have been piling up in The Burgh and the Penguins have managed to remain on top, but this new blow has forced head coach Mike Sullivan to make a significant change at practice.
On Wednesday morning, the Penguins kicked off the new year with a new top line as Alex Galchenyuk skated with Evgeni Malkin and Bryan Rust.
It has been a tough season for Galchenyuk, who landed in Pittsburgh after he was traded from the Arizona Coyotes for Phil Kessel.
However the last couple of games have been encouraging for Galchenyuk, whose name has been heard more than once in trade chatter ever since he was moved to Pittsburgh only to look lost and inefficient.
During Saturday’s 6-4 victory against the Nashville Predators at PPG Paints Arena, Galchenyuk scored for the fourth time this season.
It is a start and Penguins fans will want to see more now that he is getting a chance on the top line with Malkin and Rust.