Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin continued their dominance against the Flyers and Penguins rookie Alex Goligoski scored on his first career shootout attempt as the Penguins defeated the Philadelphia Flyers 5-4 Thursday night at Mellon Arena.
Pittsburgh got out to a early 3-0 lead getting goals from Matt Cooke, Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby but a 3-0 lead is never safe for the Penguins this year. The Penguins power play went 1-7 and Simon Gagne scored twice short-handed during a four-goal second period that put the Flyers up 4-3.
Penguins head coach Michel Therrien pulled starting goalie Marc Andre Fleury following the second period. Fleury has given up 10 goals in his last 5 periods of regulation play.
Dany Sabourin came on in relief and made 11 saves in the third period and Crosby tied it at 4-4 with 2:33 remaining in the third with his sixth goal of the season. Sabourin turned aside Simone Gagne, Mike Richards, Jeff Carter, Kimmo Timonen, Joffrey Lupul and Scott Hartnell in the shootout. Pittsburgh is now 6-2 in overtime play this season and 3-1 in shootouts.
The Penguins (10-4-2) host the Buffalo Sabres Saturday night.
Michel Therrien said following the game that Marc Andre Fleury will likely start Saturday against the Sabres.
I was kind of surprised Daryl Sydor was a healthy scratch over Mark Eaton tonight. Sydor has earned the chance to stay in the lineup. There is pressure from the front office to keep Eaton in the lineup according to a source
Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin continue to dominate against the Flyers. Sidney Crosby has 18 goals and 21 assists in 22 career games against the Flyers. Evgeni Malkin has 11 goals and 15 assists in 17 career games against the Flyers
Whitney close to returning?
Ryan Whitney is expected to practice in the next 7-10 days according to Rob Rossi and I‚Äôm hearing December 8th when the Penguins play the Buffalo Sabres at home is Whitney‚Äôs target date. A early target date¬†for Sergei Gonchar is mid-late January.
Shanahan close to joining the Flyers?
The Flyers have waived Lasse Kukkonen to clear cap space for Brendan Shanahan who is expected to make decision by the end of the weekend. Shanahan has offers on the table from the Blackhawks, Bruins and Flyers. I have not received any confirmation that the Devils have made an offer. Penguins sources continue to deny a offer has been made by the Penguins. A source in Philadelphia believes they have which I reported yesterday. Thus far just outside sources speculating that the Penguins are interested.