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Maatta will play in Game 6 for Penguins, after all

Pittsburgh Penguins v Nashville Predators

NASHVILLE, TN - MARCH 04: Olli Maatta #3 of the Pittsburgh Penguins skates during warm ups prior to a game against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena on March 4, 2014 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images)

Frederick Breedon

The Pittsburgh Penguins won’t be in as much of a bind as early indications implied, as it looks like defenseman Olli Maatta will be able to play in Game 6.

The rookie blueliner skipped Sunday’s morning skate with what’s believed to be an illness, but he’s good enough to play tonight as the Penguins aim to eliminate the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden.

The Penguins posted their defensive combinations for today’s contest:

Perhaps Maatta will have a “Jordan Flu Game”-type performance tonight? If nothing else, his opponents will probably limit trash talking to a distance that’s safer from the risk of spreading germs.

It probably doesn’t come as much of a surprise that the Rangers are sticking with their Game 5 performance after a strong output with their backs to the wall.

Follow James O’Brien @cyclelikesedins