Moran used to tough breaks
The bright side, if there is one, to the Penguins losing defenseman Ian Moran to a broken bone in his right foot is that it’s nothing Moran hasn’t been through before.
“That’s seven bones in my foot in five years,” Moran said Monday. “Throw in my hands and I’ve broken nine bones in five years blocking shots.”
Moran’s latest break occurred with just under 37 seconds remaining in the first period of Saturday night’s 6-3 victory over the Atlanta Thrashers. Moran estimated that he’d be out for about a month, but he couldn’t be certain.
“I’ve never broken a weight-bearing bone before, and this is a weight-bearing bone,” he said.
In Moran’s absence, the Penguins dressed seven defenseman for Monday’s practice – Andrew Ference, Michal Rozsival, Josef Melichar, Janne Laukkanen, Darius Kasparaitis, Hans Jonsson and John Jakopin, who had been skating at forward of late. Jakopin moved back to his more familiar position after Moran went down against the Thrashers.
JUST ANOTHER BIG NAME
Tonight’s game in Washington marks the first time the Penguins will be going against former Penguins captain Jaromir Jagr.
Still, they know the drill associated with trying to contain such a marquee player.
“We’ll have our game plan,” Penguins coach Rick Kehoe said. “It’s like preparing for any team you’re going to play. It’ll be no different. We’re going to have a plan. If we’re playing against Toronto, we have a plan to try to stop (Mats) Sundin. We’ll have a plan to try to stop (Jagr). We’re going to prepare like we do for every team we play.”
Kasparaitis already has suggested the Penguins will look to get their licks in against Jagr, but Ference warned that they must do so with restraint.
“As far as going out of your way to hit the guy, there’s not going to be any of that,” Ference said. “You play against a guy like that, and that’s exactly what he wants. He’s an excellent player. Every single guy in this room has tremendous respect for him and what he’s done on the ice.”
The Penguins employed the following line combinations at yesterday’s practice: Robert Lang, Jan Hrdina and Alexei Kovalev; Kris Beech, Dan LaCouture and Toby Petersen; Milan Kraft, Aleksey Morozov and Stephane Richer; and Wayne Primeau, Kevin Stevens, Billy Tibbetts and Krzysztof Oliwa. … Tibbetts drew a 10-minute misconduct while in the penalty box Saturday night after fighting with the Thrashers’ Darcy Hordichuk. Tibbetts was livid that Hordichuk’s sweater hadn’t been properly secured in the back and felt Hordichuk should have been thrown out of the game for the rules violation. It was the latest episode of a duel between the two which featured Tibbetts punching Hordichuk while Hordichuk was on the Atlanta bench last season, but not the last if Tibbetts has anything to say about it. “I’ll fight him every chance I get,” Tibbetts said.