All signs point to Kubina, a veteran of 46 playoff games, returning to the lineup. The Flyers acquired him in a Feb. 18 trade with Tampa Bay.
"We'll see [on Friday]," Kubina said. "It's a game-time decision. I watched the game. It's always tough [to sit out], but it was an unbelievable effort in the second half. It was fun to watch."
Kubina skated in 17 games with the Flyers this season. Laviolette said Kubina was scratched through no fault of his own.
"He has been effective," Laviolette said. "Pavel has done a terrific job since he's been here. A welcomed addition. Because he didn't play [Wednesday] night is not a reflection of him or his game. I'm only allowed to dress six defensemen. At the time there were seven good defensemen available."
Kubina said he would relish the opportunity to get back in the playoffs. After a deep run with the Lightning last year, one goal away from a Stanley Cup final berth in Game 7 vs. Boston, he wasn't sure when he would get a crack again.
"You never know when you'll get in," Kubina said. "Every shift is important. One hit, one shot, one goal could mean everything."
After going 0-for-3 on the power play in the second and third periods of Game 1, the Penguins were back to work on Thursday morning, tinkering with their setup preparation.
Converting on any one of those opportunities likely would have put the Flyers out of their misery. The Flyers, on the other hand, converted on their only chance, as Brayden Schenn knotted the game late.
"The power play needs to do a better job," Kris Letang said. "We could have put the game away with a power-play goal. We just have to learn from this. You don't want to give them life. When you don't have it set up, and you're not creating chances, it's tough to get momentum."
Sidney Crosby and James Neal were separated at times from Evgeni Malkin in practice on Thursday. Forward Steve Sullivan was moved back to the point with Letang. The idea is that the Penguins, who had the same success rate (19.7 percent) on the power play as the Flyers in the regular season, will spread the talent around to make two lethal units.
In the regular season, Pittsburgh flirted with five forwards on one unit, but that doesn't appear to be Dan Bylsma's plan for Game 2. Chris Kunitz, who remained with Malkin, said the Flyers didn't do anything on their penalty kills that the Penguins weren't expecting. The Flyers have killed 60 of their last 69 attempts (87 percent) over the previous 22 games.
"They're just extremely aggressive," Kunitz explained. "We need to do a better job moving the puck."
Just 12 players took part in Thursday's practice at Consol Energy Center. Notably missing were Ilya Bryzgalov, Scott Hartnell and Jaromir Jagr. They were given a day off . . . Game 1 drew an average of 844,000 viewers on the NBC Sports Network national broadcast, making it the NHL's best playoff opening night on cable since 2002. Locally, the game delivered a 7.3 household rating (219,000 households) on Comcast SportsNet, making it the most-watched opening NHL playoff game in channel history. The previous record (6.9) was held by Flyers-Sabres Game 1 on April 22, 1998. For the regular season, Flyers local ratings were up 38 percent over last year . . . The Flyers do not have any "Black Aces'' skating with the team yet during practices, as the normal postseason call-ups are helping the Phantoms battle for an AHL playoff spot. Adirondack is three points back with three games left this weekend . . . According to Shop.NHL.com, Claude Giroux' No. 28 is the top selling jersey in the league.
"Bryz is scared of bears. There were like 70 bears at the game! I wonder what would happen if he said he is scared of beautiful naked girls?!"
- Flyers forward Jaromir Jagr, on his official Twitter account (@68Jagr) Thursday evening.
Contact Frank Seravalli at email@example.com or @DNFlyers on Twitter. Read his blog, Frequent Flyers, at www.philly.com/frequentflyers.