No new season would be complete without a little injury drama. Matt Murray was injured during the World Cup and is not set to return till at least the end of the month. Tristan Jarry, however, has shown that he can be counted upon as a solid back up for Marc-Andre Fleury having posted 2 shutouts (so far) in the preseason and has officially been announced as the backup for the home opener.
The other questions involve the defense and forwards.
Bryan Rust will miss the start of the season due to needing an extended recovery period for his injuries from the post season. Rust may actually miss more time than expected from what head Coach Mike Sullivan said in a recent interview. Forwards Jake Guetzel and Scott Wilson have had the spotlight on them but we also have to take into account that Oscar Sunqvist is in the mix (but has yet to play in the preseason).
Oscar Sunqvist was part of the puzzle that won the Penguins the Stanley Cup. He has been called upon to fill open slots a few times now and has impressed on each outing even scoring his first NHL goal on a beautiful breakaway when the Penguins were shorthanded. He had to miss the rookie tournament due to injury and is working on getting back in shape. However, as of this morning, he has been reassigned to Wilkes-Barre but I expect to be seeing him again soon as he will continue to grow and impress within the organization.
It should be noted that former Wheeling Nailer, Carter Rowney (who scored the opening goal against the Columbus Blue Jackets (Oct 2nd) is also getting an extended look as he was not named in the 17 players reassigned to WBS the following morning. Kevin Porter and Tom Sestito are also still in the mix but I expect would be considered long shots. However they both continue to show their worth on different levels.
These are scenarios other teams wish they had. Having so many promising and skilled young players to spare, having your "pick of the litter" and knowing you are going to get a great player when needed is a great feeling to have. While there are only a few open spots for the team, it is safe to say that the Penguins have a bright future when it comes to young talent. Good luck boys, and may the best man for the job give the Capitals fits come opening night.