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Malkin out with lower-body injury, will miss All-Star Game

Bob McKenzie shoots down speculation that Evgeni Malkin's injury is just a way to get him out of participating in the All-Star Game.

One of the two Pittsburgh Penguins named to this year’s All-Star Game (Sunday, 3:30 pm ET on NBC and the NBC Sports app) won’t be participating in the festivities.

On Wednesday, Pens head coach Mike Sullivan announced that Evgeni Malkin has suffered a lower-body injury, one that will keep him out of tomorrow’s game in Boston and the league’s annual All-Star gala in Los Angeles.

Malkin and Sidney Crosby were the two Pittsburgh players named to the Metropolitan Division team. No word yet on a potential replacement.

It’s unclear exactly when No. 71 suffered his ailment. He played a healthy 18:27 in last night’s 3-0 loss to St. Louis but, per the Post-Gazette, appeared to be shaken up on a hard hit from Blues d-man Joel Edmundson.

Tied with Crosby for 2nd in NHL scoring (54 points), Malkin’s injury comes at the end of a month in which he’s been on fire. The 30-year-old has six goals and 11 points through nine games, and netted his first hat-trick of the season in a wild 8-7 OT win over Washington on Jan. 16.