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Notebook: No decisions yet on Penguins’ final cuts | TribLIVE.com
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Notebook: No decisions yet on Penguins’ final cuts

Karen Price

The Penguins players enjoyed a day off from practice Monday after completing the preseason schedule Sunday night with a 5-1 loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Coach Eddie Olczyk laughed when asked if he enjoyed the same luxury yesterday. Olczyk spent most of the day in meetings along with general manager Craig Patrick, owner Mario Lemieux and the rest of the Penguins’ staff to discuss the final cuts of training camp.

“We’re still in the process of talking,” Olczyk said. “You talk about a lot of different things. It’s the process of how are guys going to fit in, and what roles are they going to have, do you want young players fulfilling just roles, and those types of things. Like any process, we want to weigh everything — the pros and cons for us as a team and the players.”

No decisions were made yesterday, and Olczyk did not want to hazard a guess as to when those decisions might come down.

“It wouldn’t be fair to give it a time or a day,” he said.

MALONE, MURLEY SHOW MOXY

Columbus’ Jean-Luc Grand-Pierre is 6-3 and 223 pounds, which makes him an inch shorter but almost 10 pounds heavier than Ryan Malone. Grand-Pierre has also been around the block a few times when it comes to fighting, while Malone is straight out of college, where fighting is not permitted. But if you’re going to pick a fight, Malone reasoned in the Penguins’ preseason finale, it might as well be a good one.

“Yeah, that was interesting,” Malone said. “I figured we needed a spark, so I figured I’d give it a shot. I did all right. I’m still learning, so just trying to show everybody that I’m not afraid of anybody and do what I can.”

Malone hopes the fight helped show the coaching staff a tougher side of him.

“The way the Penguins have been in the past, any kind of toughness is good around here,” he said. “Just to show that if we’re going to lose, at least we’re going to go down fighting.”

Malone and Matt Murley both played three games in three nights. Murley also fought on Sunday, taking on Duvie Westcott, a former teammate of Malone’s at St. Cloud State who played all but four games in the AHL last year.

“Malone and Murley showed a lot of moxy,” coach Eddie Olczyk said. “Three games in three nights, and then getting their nose dirty like they did dropping the gloves. Putting their heart on their sleeve and where they want to be. You can’t put a price tag on that, that’s for sure.”

TRADE FREEZE

A trade freeze goes into effect at 2 p.m. today that will be in effect until the waiver draft is completed. Each team will release a protected/available list on Wednesday at 4 p.m., and the draft will be held Friday at noon. Penguins’ general manager Craig Patrick has not ruled out shopping from the list, but said they’ll wait to see who’s available before seriously discussing it.


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