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Game #24 Preview: Columbus Blue Jackets head east to take on Pittsburgh Penguins in Metro Division clash

Here’s what you need to know.

NHL: OCT 22 Penguins at Blue Jackets Photo by Bella Sagarese/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Columbus Blue Jackets at Pittsburgh Penguins
Tuesday, December 6, 2022 - 7:00 PM EST
PPG Paint Arena, Pittsburgh, PA
TV: Bally’s Sports Ohio - Radio: WBNS FM
Opponent’s Blog: Pensburgh

Columbus Blue Jackets, 8-13-2, 18 points, 8th Metro, 16th East
@
Pittsburgh Penguins, 13-8-4, 30 points, 4th Metro, 7th East

The Columbus Blue Jackets, most recently seen dropping a 4-2 decision to the Detroit Red Wings on Sunday night, head to the Keystone State tonight to take on the Pittsburgh Penguins. The Jackets, who seemed mentally disengaged from the game from the jump, will need to be on top of their game for this one as they head to face the Penguins. The Penguins are in the midst of a 9-2-2 run to get back in to the playoff picture after a slow start and just took 5 out of a possible six points from Carolina, Vegas, and St. Louis.

The Jackets, who have been inconsistent at best this season, are playing a team on an absolute heater tonight. They’ll have to be on top of their game to have a chance in this one.

Player to Watch

Kirill Marchenko

Kirill Marchenko was called up by the Blue Jackets from the Cleveland Monsters yesterday and is set to make his NHL debut tonight.

Marchenko has been one of the more dangerous players in the AHL this season - he has 8-11-19 in 16 games, is second among AHL rookies in scoring, and has posted a point in 14 of 16 games for the Monsters. Marchenko is being given a tremendous opportunity to play with two fellow youngsters and to fill in on the top power play unit with Johnny Gaudreau - the moment may prove immense, but Marchenko is adjusting well to the North American game and is ready for his NHL debut. Best of luck to the rookie tonight.

Jackets Notes

In less positive news, Jakub Voracek met with the media today and announced he will be out long term due to post-concussion symptoms and may not play again this season

This does, however, mean he is not (as of this moment) retiring

Kent Johnson’s goal on Sunday was his sixth of the season, tied-fourth among NHL rookies ... Johnny Gaudreau now has a a 3-14-17 stat line in his last 11 games ... Boone Jenner has 14 points in his last 13 games (8-6-14)

The Other Bench

Penguins defenseman Kris Letang, who suffered a stroke last week, is recovering and skated last Friday, along with a light workout ... According to the team, this stroke is not as serious as the stroke Letang suffered in 2014 where he missed 26 games ... Letang, as a result of the stroke, is out indefinitely ... Rickard Rakell is one assist away from 200 for his career ... Only the Devils have more points than the Penguins since December 9

Season Series

10/22/22 PIT 6 @ CBJ 3
12/06/22 CBJ @ PIT
03/07/23 CBJ @ PIT
04/13/23 PIT @ CBJ

Stats

Pittsburgh Columbus
3.52 (6) GPG 2.87 (24)
3.12 (17) GAPG 3.96 (31)
18.3% (25) PP% 15.5% (31)
80.5% (9) PK% 77.8% (20)
51.5% (12) 5v5 Shot Attempt % 44.65% (30)
51.10% (11) 5v5 Unblocked shot attempt % 44.85% (29)
9.20 (5) 5v5 Shooting % 8.94 (8)
.922 (9) 5v5 Save % .897 (31)
Sidney Crosby, 13 G Leader Boone Jenner, 9
Sidney Crosby, 20 A Leader Johnny Gaudreau, 18
Sidney Crosby, 33 P Leader Johnny Gaudreau, 26
Evgeni Malkin, 18 PIM Leader Mathieu Olivier, 37
6-3-2 Home / Road 2-4-1
7-2-1 Last 10 4-4-2

Projected Lineups

Columbus Blue Jackets
Patrik Laine Boone Jenner Johnny Gaudreau
Gus Nyquist Jack Roslovic Kent Johnson
Yegor Chinakhkov Cole Sillinger Kirill Marchenko
Eric Robinson Sean Kuraly Carson Meyer
Vladislav Gavrikov Marcus Bjork
Jake Christiansen Erik Gudbranson
Gavin Bayreuther Andrew Peeke
Elvis Merzlikins
Joonas Korpisalo
Pittsburgh Penguins
Jake Guentzel Sidney Crosby Rickard Rakell
Jason Zucker Evgeni Malkin Bryan Rust
Brock McGinn Jeff Carter Kasperi Kapanen
Ryan Poehling Teddy Blueger Josh Archibald
Marcus Pettersson Jeff Petry
Brian Dumolin Jan Rutta
Pierre-Olivier Joseph Chad Ruhwedel
Casey DeSmith
Tristan Jarry