Penguins winger James Neal returned to practice Sunday for the first time since he sustained a concussion April 5 -- if only for 18 minutes. Coach Dan Bylsma noted that Neal "joined us for just a few drills," but added, "That would be an indication of him moving along in his protocol." Neal, who has missed the past five games, remains symptom-free. He was one of four injured players who skated before practice at Southpointe. The others were centers Evgeni Malkin (shoulder, three games) and Sidney Crosby (jaw, eight games) and defenseman Paul Martin (hand, nine games). Malkin, who has been practicing with the team, returned to the ice for practice as Neal did, but Malkin stayed for the full session. Bylsma, though, said the injured players were not expected to travel to Ottawa for the game tonight and instead will skate today in Pittsburgh. Defenseman Kris Letang did not practice. Bylsma said Letang was ill. There were indications that Letang did not travel to Ottawa. Trouble brewing? The game tonight will be the Penguins' first in Ottawa since Feb. 13 when Senators star defenseman Erik Karlsson, the defending Norris Trophy winner, got hurt. Penguins winger Matt Cooke accidentally cut Karlsson's Achilles tendon with his skate blade.
James Neal practices but Letang likely out Monday
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | Apr 22