The Pittsburgh Penguins recalled forward Tom Sestito and defenseman Steve Oleksy from their AHL affiliate in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, Pa., on Tuesday, while providing updates on a number of injured players.
The moves come after top defenseman Kris Letang was suspended one game for a late hit in Game 3 of the Penguins second-round series vs. Washington. Top-pair defenseman Olli Maatta is also expected to miss Game 4 Wednesday in Pittsburgh after taking a high, late hit from Capitals defenseman Brooks Orpik in Game 2, an offense that earned Orpik a three-game ban.
Forward Bryan Rust was listed by the team as day-to-day with a lower-body injury, believed to be a badly bruised foot suffered while blocking a shot early in Game 3 on Monday. Rust's most likely forward replacement would be Oskar Sundqvist, as Beau Bennett still isn't cleared to play by team doctors and medical staff, according to the Penguins website.
On a positive note, injury-wise, top goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury returned to the lineup after missing the past 12 games with a concussion. Rookie Matt Murray, who made 47 saves in the win Monday that put the Penguins up 2-1 in the series, is expected to keep the starter's role for now, however.
"These guys are great pros and good people," Penguins coach Mike Sullivan told the team website of the potential awkward situation. "They have good relationships. They root for one another. We believe in the team as a whole as being the most important part. That's the greatest thing about our game, when it becomes something bigger than yourself, it's a terrific experience."
Sestito, 28, played in four NHL regular-season games with Pittsburgh this year, tallying an assist against the Capitals on April 7. The 6-foot-5, 228-pound bruiser had two assists in three games for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton during its first-round sweep of the Providence Bruins. During the regular season, Sestito had five goals and nine assists in 41 games.
Oleksy, 30, has been recalled several times this season. He is looking to make his Pittsburgh debut. A 6-foot, 190-pound right-handed-shooting blueliner, Oleksy registered one assist in three games for WBS in Round 1. During the regular season, Oleksy two goals and 17 assists in 63 games.