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James Neal out indefinitely with upper-body injury

Oct 4, 2013, 1:03 PM EDT

James Neal #18 of the Pittsburgh Penguins takes a shot in the first period against the New Jersey Devils during the home opener at Consol Energy Center on October 3, 2013 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The Penguins defeated the Devils 3-0.
(October 2, 2013 - Source: Justin K. Aller/Getty Images North America) Getty Images

It looks like the Pittsburgh Penguins will have to get used to playing without forward James Neal for at least a little while.

After leaving Thursday’s contest for what initially sounded like precautionary reasons, Neal is now being described as week-to-week with an upper-body injury by Penguins coach Dan Bylsma, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Shelly Anderson.

Bylsma also cautioned that Neal doesn’t have a firm timetable for his return yet.

Neal was questionable for the contest to begin with, but he was given the green light after participating in the pre-game warmups. He had two shots on goal and logged 3:49 minutes before being yanked.

The 26-year-old forward entered this season as a threat to reach the 40-goal mark. Still, the Pittsburgh Penguins are so loaded with offensive talent that they can usually endure the loss of one of their star forwards.

  1. btlpper68 - Oct 4, 2013 at 1:14 PM

    Well there’s a blow to my fantasy team

    • sjsblitz - Oct 4, 2013 at 1:48 PM

      No kidding, there goes my 3rd rounder

      • stepanup - Oct 4, 2013 at 8:02 PM

        He made it to the third round in your league? Who knew it was that easy to find 40 goal, 80 point, 300 shot and 100 hit players.

  2. semin28 - Oct 4, 2013 at 1:17 PM

    Who cares about the pens

    • killerpgh - Oct 4, 2013 at 4:00 PM

      I would guess anyone the reads this article. Especially if they take the time to read and comment….

  3. curioustraveler13 - Oct 4, 2013 at 1:34 PM

    Bennett and Jokinen will fill out the top 6 with malkin, and neither will look out of place during Neal’s absence. Jeffery will play wing with sutter and kobasew and add some offensive creativity to that 2 way responsible 3rd line. Tjem Vitale will be 4th line center. Still not a bad lineup at all. Rest up Neal.

  4. ibieiniid - Oct 4, 2013 at 1:57 PM

    the amount of stick-flex in that photo is pretty incredible.
    (remembering what my momma told me about when I have nothing nice to say)

    • hockey412 - Oct 4, 2013 at 2:02 PM

      Hah – you did well. Bravo.

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