Source: Pens’ star defenseman John Marino needs surgery for broken cheek

Source: Pens’ star defenseman John Marino needs surgery for broken cheek
(Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

The outlook for John Marino’s recovery took a turn for the worse overnight.

A source told DK Pittsburgh Sports Friday afternoon that Marino's left cheekbone is broken in three places and will require surgery. There was no further information available, including from the team. The Penguins had no comment on his status other than Mike Sullivan telling reporters earlier in the day after practice at BB&T Center, "He's being further evaluated for precautionary reasons."

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Thursday night in Tampa, Marino was struck in the face by a Steven Stamkos shot that changed directions off Zach Aston-Reese in the 4-2 loss to the Lightning

After the game, the prognosis was guarded but decidedly upbeat. Sullivan said, "We think he's going to be OK," and a source later confirmed to our site that Marino hadn't been seriously hurt. Even Friday morning before practice, another source told our site that Marino's swelling on the left side of the face hadn't been as severe as other players who'd been similarly struck.

Penguins enjoying snow at the Pittsburgh Zoo