Not enough room for Sid and Geno? That notion was quickly cast aside by Geno himself, who strongly dismissed the idea that one Penguins superstar can play better without the other around.

"It`s not true, for sure," Malkin said. "… I like to play with Sid."

The past four games certainly have much for Malkin to like and should help end any thoughts that his MVP-caliber season or scoring title lead couldn`t have happened with Sidney Crosby around.

Since Crosby returned March 15, Malkin has five goals and four assists, including a five-point night Tuesday against Winnipeg. As Malkin pointed out, Crosby assisted on one of his goals with a nifty pass.