Pittsburgh, PA (Sports Network) - The Pittsburgh Penguins have activated Evgeni Malkin from injured reserve, an indication that the star center will play in Thursday's game against the Winnipeg Jets.
Malkin has missed nine consecutive contests after hurting his shoulder at Toronto on March 9. It was only the reigning Hart Trophy recipient's third game back from a concussion that sidelined him for four consecutive outings.
The Penguins haven't been hindered much by Malkin's absence, with the current Eastern Conference leaders winning all nine of those matchups as part of a 13- game win streak the club will take into Thursday's tilt.
To clear room on the active roster, Pittsburgh reassigned rookie forward Beau Bennett to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the American Hockey League.
The Penguins also promoted goaltender Jeff Zatkoff from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. He is slated to back up Tomas Vokoun against the Jets with No. 1 netminder Marc-Andre Fleury reportedly dealing with a sore neck, the result of a collision with teammate Tyler Kennedy in Tuesday's 1-0 win over Montreal.