Morning Skate: Preseason vs. Pittsburgh

Saturday, 09.14.2013 / 10:00 PM / News
By Rob Mixer  - BlueJackets.com

COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS VS. PITTSBURGH PENGUINSNATIONWIDE ARENA | 6 P.M.
LIVE BLOG | TICKET INFO | PHOTO GALLERY
TV: NHL NETWORK (US) | RADIO: 1460 ESPN



 




The Blue Jackets and Penguins are dressing veteran-heavy lineups for their first preseason game of 2013. 

Columbus will have Curtis McElhinney between the pipes while the Penguins are expected to start Marc-Andre Fleury.

Sidney Crosby did not make the trip with Pittsburgh, but the visitors will have Evgeni Malkin, James Neal and Beau Bennett (among others) in their lineup tonight. The Blue Jackets have Marian Gaborik, Brandon Dubinsky, Cam Atkinson and a host of regulars suiting up for the exhibition opener.

Here are complete rosters for both teams:


COLUMBUS
Forwards: Anisimov, Atkinson, Bass, Comeau, Dubinsky, Gaborik, Letestu, Little, Skille, Smith, Umberger, Vogelhuber

Defensemen: Goloubef, Murray, Melart, Nikitin, Savard, Wisniewski

Goalies: Dansk, McElhinney


PITTSBURGH
Forwards: Glass, Kobasew, Jeffrey, Neal, Bennett, Ebbett, Letourneau-Leblond, Sill, Farnham, Payerl, Vitale, Kuhnhackl, Malkin

Defensemen: Niskanen, Scuderi, Harrington, Dumoulin, Mikkelson, Samuelsson, Pouliot

Goalies: Fleury, Zatkoff

TONIGHT'S BLUE JACKETS LINEUP
Little - Anisimov - Gaborik
Comeau - Letestu - Skille
Umberger - Dubinsky - Atkinson
Smith - Vogelhuber - Bass

Murray - Wisniewski
Nikitin - Savard
Melart - Goloubef

McElhinney
Dansk




What to expect? It's hard to predict on a normal day but even more so when looking ahead to the first preseason game of a new season. As expected, both teams are bringing a host of veterans to help get them back into game shape and ready for opening night, but there's also an interesting mix of young players on both rosters.

The Penguins have a young defense coming to Columbus that includes Scott Harrington and Brian Dumoulin, and some fresh faces up front like Beau Bennett and Tom Kuhnhackl, the latter coming off a strong development camp earlier this summer. Between the pipes, there will be two experienced players in Marc-Andre Fleury (who's looking for a bounce back season following a disappointing playoff run) for the Penguins, and McElhinney for Columbus.

Blue Jackets coach Todd Richards wants to use the eight-game exhibition schedule to try out line combinations and special teams units, and tonight is his first opportunity to do so. If this week's practices are a precursor, look for Anisimov and Gaborik to see time on the same line and possibly Wisniewski and Murray on the blue line. The rest of the lines will be known in the pre-game warmup, but one thing we do know is that they'll be assembled with purpose.

If you can't make it down to Nationwide Arena for tonight's game, be sure to follow along with our LIVE blog and get insight from Kristyn Repke and myself throughout the game. We'll have complete post-game coverage on BlueJackets.com, as well.






VS. BUFFALO SABRES (7 P.M.) - in Columbus
AT MINNESOTA WILD (8 P.M.) - in St. Paul, MN


**split squad games

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Johnson 1 1 1 0 2
D. MacKenzie 1 1 0 0 1
M. Letestu 1 1 0 1 1
B. Dubinsky 1 0 1 1 1
B. Jenner 1 0 1 -1 1
F. Tyutin 1 0 0 -1 0
J. Wisniewski 1 0 0 0 0
B. Comeau 1 0 0 -1 0
N. Nikitin 1 0 0 0 0
J. Skille 1 0 0 -1 0
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
S. Bobrovsky 0 1 0 .875 4.07
 
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