Wednesday, November 11, 2015

The Penguins are finally back in Pittsburgh!

By: MF,

The Pittsburgh Penguins are back home at Consol Energy Center to face the National Hockey League’s (NHL’s) team, the Montreal Canadiens (Habs). The Habs hold the NHL-best record of 13-2-1 with all 13 of their wins coming in regulation. Since their last meeting on October 13, the Penguins have improved going 9-2 that included a six-game winning streak. They have scored a power-play goal in each of their last five games and have a goal-against average of 2.00, which is ranked third in the NHL. Also, the penalty kill leads the NHL as they have killed 31 of 33 (93.9%) and they are fourth in the league in the faceoff circle with a 52.1 faceoff percentage.

As for the lineups, there has been some shifting over the past few games. The biggest change will be to the top line centered by Sidney Crosby. He will now have Pascal Dupuis and Beau Bennett. Dupuis will be returning to the lineup tonight as all his test came back negative and deemed that his symptoms were not related to his previous blood clot issues. Hopefully, this line can get something going and it will be nice to see the energetic Dupuis back on the ice to fire things up. 

As for the second line, they have been doing well together, since David Perron was added onto the wing with Phil Kessel and center Evgeni Malkin. Perron and Kessel have been producing well on Malkin’s line. Perron was switched to the second line on October 28th. Over the last six games on that line, he has four points and averages 3.33 shots on goal per game. Two of his four points have come on the power-play. Kessel also has clicked well with Malkin as he has seven points (four goals and three assists) in seven games played with him. Kessel is also riding a three-game point streak (two goals and two assists). In addition, Kessel has a total of 18 points in the last 15 games he has played against the Habs. Look for this line to contribute big time.

A Challenging Matchup

The Penguins will have to stay focused, disciplined, and ready to play a full 60-minute game. The Habs are not top in the league for no reason; they are a strong and focused team. When they do get out of sync, which rarely happens, they bounce right back. The Penguins will not be able to let down their guard, evening if they have the lead. Many might think their weakness for tonight would be the goaltending as they will be without the services of Carey Price. However, Mike Condon is 6-0-1 when he is in between the pipes and as a 1.57 goals-against-average. It will not be an easy task to get goals past him. 

Lets Go Pens! 

The lineup is as follows:

Dupuis - Crosby - Bennett
Kessel - Malkin - Perron
Kunitz - Bonino - Hornqvist
Sprong - Cullen - Fehr

Dumoulin - Lovejoy
Cole - Letang
Maatta - Scuderi

Fleury in the net! 

Play By Play
PENS 4 Habs 3


CROSBY SCORES! He comes in fast and stops! He stick handles the puck a few times and puts it past Condon!

Desharnais is denied by the stacked pads of Fleury!

PERRON SCORES! He comes in quick and blast one past Condon!

Galchenyuk is poke checked by Fleury!

0:00 - Overtime and regulation are not enough. We are headed to a shootout.

0:26 - Pens power play ends.

1:10 - Letang rings one off the goal post!

2:26 - Habs have too many men on the ice and the Pens are getting a power play opportunity in overtime.

2:37 - Crosby is coming in fast to the goal, but couldn't handle Perron's pass.

4:35 - Malkin leaves the puck for a defensemen, but the Habs get there first. Almost made the Pens pay for that one.

5:00 - The puck drops on the 3 on 3 overtime period! Pens need to take control earlier and keep it! Lets Go Pens!

Third Period
0:00 - We are headed to overtime.

0:16 - Power play ends for the Pens.

1:20 - Timeout for the Pens.

2:12 - The Pens are getting a late power play chance as Gilbert is called for holding.

2:29 - Kunitz gets the puck behind the Habs' net and finds Hornqvist in the slot! Condon with the save!

3:42 - Consol has erupted and the crowd is back in this one.

6:10 - HORNQVIST SCORES! Crosby finds Hornqvist, who comes flying into the Habs' zone! He rifles one past Condon! Things are tied at three a piece!

7:50 - The Habs have an odd-man rush and Fleury makes the glove save!

8:31 - Kunitz and Bonino both have quality chances, but Condon makes the necessary saves.

11:30 - The Pens get some offensive zone time, but their shots are wide of the net. They need to get more traffic in front and get that puck on the net.

15:58 - Finally some offensive pressure is created by the second line of the Pens. Kessel's shot is turned away by Condon!

20:00 - Time for the third period! The Pens have to pick up their game and get some shots on net! Lets Go Pens!

Second Period
0:00 - Second period ends and the Habs have the 3-2 lead over the Pens.

0:06 - Perron backhands one that goes off the goal post!

1:36 - Maatta hits the ice with Letang.

2:14 - Maatta is back on the bench! 

3:58 - Pens kill it. 

5:58 - Crosby now in the box for unsportsmanlike conduct. Habs to the power play. 

5:58 - Flynn Scores. Habs get another 2 on 1 chance, Flynn takes the shot and gets it past Fleury. The Habs have the 3-2 lead. 

8:36 - The Pens kill off the Habs power play! 

7:15 - Maatta takes a puck to the mouth and is bleeding. 

10:36 - Letang is headed to the sin bin for interference and the Habs go onto the power play. 

12:13 - Gallagher Scores. Cole mishandles the puck and give it up to Gallagher who is all alone behind the defense. He goes high glove. 2-2 tie game. 

14:30 - Fleury makes a save as the Habs come crashing into the net area. 

16:04 - Power play for the Pens come to an end. 

16:44 - The Pens now have a short power play. 

18:04 - 4 on 4 hockey time as Subban is called for tripping. 

18:44 - Habs will head onto the power play. Kunitz is called for tripping. Crosby looks to be ok now. 

19:30 - Crosby is hit and hobbles to the bench. He is in some discomfort. 

20:00 - Second period is underway! The Pens have to stay focus and keep pressuring the Habs! Lets Go Pens! 

First Period
0:00 - First period ends and the Pens have the 2-1 lead! 

0:43 - MAATTA SCORES! Kessel fires one from the point area and it goes off Maatta's leg right past Condon! The Pens retake the lead 2-1!

2:37 - Fleury is back in net! 

4:13 - Pens get their own 2 on 1 chance and Crosby's shot rings off the goal post! 

4:47 - Lovejoy's stick is caught in the eye hole of Fleury's mask and he heads straight for the locker room. Zatkoff is now in the net. 

5:42 - The Pens power play comes to an end. 

6:42 - Habs get a 2-on-1 chance, but Letang makes a beautiful sliding play to break it up! 

7:14 - Condon robs Malkin! 

7:42 - Power play for the Pens as Gallagher is called for tripping. 

9:24 - Condon makes a great save as the Pens crash the net after Hornqvist is robbed in front! 

11:50 - Dupuis comes flying into the offensive zone, but Condon denies him. 

15:48 - Markov Scores. Subban puts a pass right into the wheelhouse of Markov and he blows one past Fleury. A power play goal for the Habs. 1-1 tie game. 

16:49 - Malkin will take a seat for slashing. The Pens third ranked penalty kill will take on the third ranked Habs power play. 

17:22 - Fleury makes a solid save as he is pushed around a bit by the Habs. Letang take exception and a scrum ensues.  

19:47 - DUPUIS SCORES! 13 seconds into this one Crosby finds Dupuis alone in the blue paint! Dupuis welcomes Condon to Pittsburgh! 1-0 Pens! 

20:00 - The puck has dropeed at Consol! It's officially hockey night in Pittsburgh! Lets Go Pens! 

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