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      Pittsburgh Penguins’ Bryan Rust day-to-day with lower-body injury

      Vinnie Hinostroza and Matt Nieto are available to play for the Penguins.

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      Pittsburgh Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan announced that winger Bryan Rust is going to be out of the lineup on a day-to-day basis due to a lower-body injury.

      It’s unclear as to what caused Rust’s injury, as the Penguins have not revealed any specific details about it. He played the entirety of Sunday’s game against the Vegas Golden Knights, including a shift in the final few minutes of the third period. He finished the game with a hit and three shots on goal in 18:36 of ice time as the Penguins went on to win the game 3-0.

      Rust, 31, has had a strong bounceback season so far, with nine goals and seven assists for 16 points in 17 games this year. He’s been one of the more efficient goal scorers in the league in the past few seasons, with his 0.83 5v5 goals per 60 minutes ranking 39th in the league among forwards with at least 3000 minutes of ice time.

      Rust was a third-round pick of the Penguins in the 2010 NHL Draft, and after making his debut in the 2014-15 season, he’s spent the entirety of his 10-season NHL career with the Pens. He’s currently in the second year of a six-year deal with a $5.125 million cap hit that he signed with the Penguins in the 2022 offseason.

      With both Rust and Rickard Rakell out of the lineup for the time being, the Penguins have had to make some adjustments to the top six, as Vinnie Hinostroza, who is returning to the lineup after dealing with a lower-body injury, will be playing in Rust’s spot on the top line with Sidney Crosby and Jake Guentzel, while Alex Nylander slots next to Evgeni Malkin and Reilly Smith on the second line. Matt Nieto is also available to play but will be a game-time decision after missing Tuesday’s practice for a maintenance day.

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