Bryan Rust, Jason Zucker absent from Penguins practice

May 25—On the heels of a devastating loss in an important game, two of the Pittsburgh Penguins' top six forwards were absent from practice.

Wings Bryan Rust and Jason Zucker were not present for practice Tuesday afternoon at UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex in Cranberry. Each played the entirety of Monday night's 3-2 double-overtime defeat to the New York Islanders in Game 5 of the East Division first-round playoff series.

After the session, coach Mike Sullivan said Rust was given the day off so he could spend time with his wife and newborn baby. Zucker was termed by Sullivan as having "a maintenance day."

The Penguins face a must-win Game 6 at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday on Long Island.

Rust, the first-line right wing, is one of two Penguins players who has not missed a game this season. He had 22 goals and 20 assists in 56 regular-season games and two goals and an assist through five games of this playoff series.

Typically the left wing on the second line, Zucker has one goal and no assists in the postseason after having 18 points (nine goals, nine assists) in 38 regular-season games.

Also absent from practice was No. 2 goalie Casey DeSmith, who has missed the postseason because of an undisclosed injury. Sullivan said DeSmith did not skate Tuesday and will not travel with the Penguins to New York. That leaves Maxime Lagace again as the backup to Tristan Jarry on Wednesday.

Keep up with the Pittsburgh Penguins all season long.

Chris Adamski is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Chris by email at or via Twitter .