Recchi forced to sit and wait for trade

LANCE HORNBY

, Last Updated: 8:44 AM ET

With 54 points against Toronto in 49 career games, you would think Mark Recchi would be in the starting five against the Maple Leafs tonight at the Air Canada Centre.

But Recchi has been in the press box the past few games, awaiting a trade from the Pittsburgh Penguins, apparently no longer fitting in with their youth movement.

"We're trying to accommodate him," Penguins' assistant general manager Chuck Fletcher told the Fan 590 yesterday.

The Pens, who hosted Dallas last night before flying here, have not dazzled on offence beyond Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin. Their combined 62 points is more than their next seven forwards combined, including Recchi's eight points in 19 games.

So coach Michel Therrien has begun putting even more kids in the mix, such as Soo native Tyler Kennedy, currently on the third line with Jordan Staal and Gary Roberts.

Recchi, on the verge of turning 40, might have a long wait for a deal.

Defenceman Darryl Sydor, a healthy scratch for five consecutive games, was back in the lineup last night after Sergei Gonchar developed a groin problem.

Gonchar's 24 points will be missed, but it's Pittsburgh's inability to keep the puck out that has stuck them in last place in the Atlantic division.

The poster boys for the new NHL, the Pens began last night stuck behind the Leafs in the standings.

Crosby is expected to centre a line with Ryan Malone and and Colby Armstrong tonight, while Malkin is between Erik Christensen and Petr Sykora.

The Leafs are 1-1 against the Penguins this season.


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