|Obligatory Anthem Pic|
The Penguins faced a banged up LA Kings team last night and rode the powerplay as well as goaltending Marc-Andre Fleury to a 3-0 victory. The Penguins converted on 2/6 powerplay opportunities to keep their powerplay best in the league, clicking at 39.5% (15/38). Malkin fought Justin Williams and wanted to kill Jarret Stoll, Downie gooned it up, and Kunitz scored two goals. All in all a very successful night for the Penguins.
The Kings went with backup goalie Martin Jones (who is still actually a stud) as they planned to save Jonathan Quick for Friday's game against Detroit. In addition, the Kings were without star center Anze Kopitar (upper-body), wife beater Slava Voynov and injury prone hero Marian Gaborik. The Penguins did not look good to start as their passes did not seem to connect and they spent a lot of time in their own zone. However, with about 10:45 to go in the first the Pens found themselves on a 5 on 3 man advantage with Toffoli and Doughty sitting in the box. Now, the Pens powerplay is unreal and their 5 on 3 powerplay is even better. Kunitz played catch with Malkin, went to the net and Kunitz tipped Malkin's slap-pass home to put the Pens up 1-0 with his fourth goal of the year. Malkin recorded his 400th NHL assist on that play (We said yesterday look for some random milestone to happen this game, well here you go). The Penguins found themselves on another powerplay with about 4:45 to go in the first the Penguins cashed in on another powerplay. Letang looked like he was attempting to pass to Kunitz or set him up for another redirect when it went off Kings winger Dwight King. 2-0 Pens another powerplay goal, Letang's 1st of the season.
There was no scoring however things got chippy. Jarret Stoll was just skating around trying to impress his slam-piece Erin Andrews by slashing Penguin after Penguin. He jousted with Malkin a bit and had words with Downie. Nothing resulted from this, except for rising tensions. Justin Williams and Evgeni Malkin got together along the boards, Williams dropped the gloves first and Malkin just gave him a big Russian bear hug for the takedown. Malkin then tried to pump up the Consol crowd because why not? Downie also tried to get in on the action by taking an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for trying to fight Stoll as well. Basically now with Downie, you cannot out-goon the Penguins. DOWNIE'S GONNNA KILLL YOUUUUU.
The third period was mainly LA Kings shooting weak shots on net however the Pens were the only team to score in the third. With about 10:35 to go in the third period Crosby drove to the net with that amazing upper-body strength, got the puck on net with the rebound going to Chris Kunitz who scored from the bottom of the right circle, a pretty tough angle. 3-0 Pens for his second goal of the night and 5th of the season. The real highlight were all the typical Pens "fans" that began to leave early, but since it was the #FSPensSection last night, section 120 let them have it by chanting "Beat the traffic" and "Why are you leaving??" WHAT HEROES. DON'T LEAVE EARLY UNLESS IT'S AN EMERGENCY CIRCUMSTANCE AND EVEN THEN IT CAN PROBABLY WAIT. But seriously, it's good to have a night once in awhile were Consol sounds loud and isn't all corporate season ticket holding trolls.
3rd star: Kris Letang (1 goal )
2nd star: Marc-Andre Fleury (shutout, 36 saves)
1st star: Chris Kunitz (2 goals, 1 assist, 3 points)
- Malkin recorded his 400th NHL assist on Chris Kunitz's first goal (5th player in Pens history to do so)
- Powerplay leading the NHL 15/38 (39.5%)
- Fleury's second shutout in three games
- Penguins have killed the last 22 penalties, ranking them 11th in the PK
- Malkin gives great hugs
- Kings outshot the Pens 36-23, but many of them were weak shots
- Penguins blocked a total of 18 shots last night
Next game: Saturday 7PM against the league best Buffalo Sabres
-LETS GO PENS.