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 PITTSBURGH (AP) -Penguins forward Gary Roberts broke his left leg while tangling awkwardly with Buffalo's Tim Connolly midway through the second period of Pittsburgh's 2-0 win Saturday night.
As Connolly fell in the left circle in Buffalo's end, the 41-year-old Roberts went down with him and struck his left leg hard on the ice, breaking his fibula.
A stretcher was brought out but Roberts did not use it, limping off the ice with assistance.
``I don't know who got a piece of me but I fell,'' Connolly said. ``I'm not sure exactly what happened but I was surprised to see him down. It's a freak accident, and I wish something like that doesn't happen.''
Roberts, who re-signed with Pittsburgh after playing a key role in the Penguins' playoff drive last season, was honored before the game for recently scoring his 900th career point. Roberts has three goals and 12 assists in 37 games this season, the oldest player on one of the league's youngest teams.
Roberts, a left wing who broke into the NHL with Calgary during the 1986-87 season, has 434 goals and 469 assists for 903 points in 1,192 career games.
``There's no doubt, Gary was doing a great job as a true leader for a lot of guys,'' coach Michel Therrien said. ``The young players on the team will have to compensate for the leadership that we won't have from Gary Roberts and we don't know for how long.''
Roberts is the second veteran Penguins player to be seriously hurt in less than a week. Defenseman Mark Eaton is out indefinitely after tearing a knee ligament Sunday against Boston.
The Penguins also are without goalie Marc-Andre Fleury (sprained ankle), who hasn't played since Dec. 5 and may not return until February.
``It's been tough, seeing guys like that, real key guys, go down,'' forward Colby Armstrong said. ``When you see a guy like that laying on the ice, for sure, it's tough.''
Despite the injuries, the Penguins have won seven of 11 and are four games above .500 (20-16-20 for the first time this season after beating Buffalo 2-0.
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