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Penguins Vs. Thrashers: Pens Rest Before Playoffs

With their first-round NHL playoff matchup against the Tampa Bay Lightning already set, the Penguins play their final game against the Atlanta Thrashers Sunday afternoon, and it's a meaningless one. (The only teams still battling for a playoff spot are the Chicago Blackhawks and Dallas Stars, both in the Western Conference.) The Philadelphia Flyers have won the Atlantic Division, so the Penguins are already set to be the No. 4 seed in the Eastern Conference.

Several of the Penguins' top players will therefore sit out today. James Neal, Chris Kunitz, Jordan Staal and Marc-Andre Fleury will all be out, while Eric Tangradi, Chris Conner and Mike Comrie will play.

Neal has what appears to be a hand or wrist injury, but Pens coach Dan Bylsma thinks he'll be ready for the playoffs:

Coach Dan Bylsma, though, said he expects Neal to be ready for the start of the Penguins' first-round playoff series against Tampa Bay.

The game begins at 3:00 PM Eastern.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.