The Pittsburgh Penguins, riding on the red hot glove of 3rd-string goaltender Ty Conklin, shutout the Florida Panthers 3-0 on Saturday afternoon and extended the Penguins winning streak to 6 games. Conklin (7-0) maintained his perfect record this season by stopping 35-shots and picking up his 2nd shutout in 4-games. In his last 6-starts, Conklin has only let in 8-goals. His save percentage now stands at 0.939 with a 2.0 Goals Against Average, defying his 3rd-string status. More importantly, the Penguins (23-16-2) have won 75% of their games since Thanksgiving day when they beat the Ottawa Senators and turned their mediocre season around. The Penguins are showing no signs of letting up, despite key injuries to their lineup.
In the 1st period, the Penguins scored 2-early goals to set the tone for the game. At 4:26, Tyler Kennedy picked up his 8th goal of the season as he took a great pass from Ryan Malone and put it past Tomas Vokoun to make it 1-0. Less than 2-minutes later, Evgeni Malkin picked up his 19th goal of the season as he put the puck in a wide open net while on the power-play. Sideny Crosby made a cross-ice pass to Ryan Whitney, who threw the puck at the net. Vokoun made the save, but gave up a juicy rebound as he overplayed the save and put himself way outside of the net. Malkin, who was left alone in the slot had an easy put in to make it 2-0. Shots were even at 11-11 after 1, and the Penguins were 1-for-3 on the power play. The Penguins killed off their only penalty of the period (and game) as Adam Hall took a sit for holding.
In the 2nd and 3rd periods the Panthers continued to pressure the Penguins by outshooting them 12-10 in each period. Yet, despite several good chances, the Panthers just couldn’t solve Ty Conklin. The Penguins put the game away at 17:19 of the 3rd as Sidney Crosby stripped the puck away from Olli Jokinen in front of the Panthers net, backhanded the puck to Malkin, and then took the pass back from Malkin and wristed it past Vokoun. The goal was Crosby’s 17th of the season and first regulation goal in 7-games.
Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby finished the game with a goal and an assist each. Tyler Kennedy picked up a goal and Ryan Whitney and Ryan Malone each had an assist. Ty Conklin was named the player of the game with Sidney Crosby getting the 2nd star, and Tyler Kennedy the 3rd star.
- VIDEO: Post-Game Press Conference w/Coach Therrien
- VIDEO: Post-Game Locker Room Interviews
- PHOTOS: Game Photos
- AUDIO: Mike Lange Highlights
- AUDIO: Post-Game Hotline
- AUDIO: Post-Game Rink Rat Report
- NHL OFFICIAL: Game Rosters
- NHL OFFICIAL: Game Summary
- NHL OFFICIAL: Boxscore
- NHL OFFICIAL: Play-by-Play
The Penguins get a couple days off before hitting the road for a 3-game Southeast Division road trip in which they meet up with the Florida Panthers again on Tuesday, the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday and the Atalanta Thrashers next Saturday. The Penguins are 5-1 against the Southeast Division so far this season.