Phil Kessel returns to Penguins practice; Derick Brassard remains out |

Phil Kessel returns to Penguins practice; Derick Brassard remains out

Chris Adamski
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Capitals' Andre Burakovsky gets around the Penguins' Phil Kessel in the first period Sunday, April 1, 2018 at PPG Paints Arena.

If any doubt lingered that Phil Kessel’s ironman streak would continue, those concerns appear to have been allayed.

After sitting out Tuesday’s practice for a “maintenance day” as he deals with a lower-body injury, Kessel was back for Wednesday’s workout at the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex in Cranberry. He took line rushes in his familiar third-line right-wing spot.

Kessel sat out the final 11 minutes, 20 seconds of Saturday night’s victory against Montreal , but he did return to play 18:28 the following night against Washington.

That was the 690th consecutive regular-season game Kessel appeared in, the ninth-longest streak in NHL history. Kessel has been dealing with an injury of some sort throughout much of the season and often has been excused from practices.

Centers Derick Brassard (lower body) and Carter Rowney (upper body) were the only players absent from Wednesday’s practice. Brassard has missed the past three games; Rowney the past eight. There was no update given on the status of either player.

The Penguins were to leave for Columbus after practice in advance of Thursday night’s game at the Blue Jackets that could determine whether the Penguins have home-ice advantage in the first round.

Chris Adamski is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at [email protected] or via Twitter @C_AdamskiTrib.

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