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Insider Only Penguins top Fleury, Golden Knights with 5-4 win

Penguins 5 – Golden Knights 4

PIT LEADERS
Evgeni Malkin | Goal (30), Assist
Phil Kessel | Goal (24), Assist
Sidney Crosby | 2 Assists
Jake Guentzel | Goal (16)
Ian Cole | Goal (3)
Ryan Reaves | Goal (3), 7 hits


The hockey gods looked to be smiling down on Marc Andre Fleury for the first 30 minutes of tonight’s game. The Vegas Golden Knights had a 2-0 lead mid-way through the game and Fleury stopped the first 17 shots he faced in what was a goaltending duel early before a barrage of goals would play out.

The Penguins would quickly take over the game just after the 11 minute mark of the second period.

Ryan Reaves, Ian Cole and Jake Guentzel scored 7:32 apart in the second as Pittsburgh turned a 2-0 deficit into a 3-2 lead after forty minutes and then it was the Evgeni Malkin/Phil Kessel show in the third period.

Malkin scored his 30th goal of the season 3:09 into the period, with a blistering shot past Fleury as Kessel picked up a primary helper.

Leading 4-2 after Malkin’s marker, 3:11 later Phil Kessel delivered a back breaking goal to put the Penguins up 5-2 off a gorgeous feed from Malkin.

Scoring five unanswered goals in a 15:12 span, the Penguins found the net five times on 14 shots during that span to spoil Fleury’s return to Pittsburgh.

Vegas, though, didn’t call it a night after the Kessel goal.

Ryan Carpenter scored 18 seconds after Kessel gave the Penguins a 5-2 lead and Jonathan Marchessault would net his 19th goal of the season at 12:04 of the period to cut the Penguins lead to 5-4.

The Penguins would hold on to improve to 30-22-9, 63 pts, on the season.

Marc Andre Fleury stopped 33 of 38 shots in the loss. Matt Murray turned aside 21 of 25 shots.

For Pittsburgh, Sidney Crosby (2 assists), Evgeni Malkin (Goal, Assist), and Phil Kessel (Goal, Assist) each put up multi-point games.

Kessel with 65 points on the season is now one point behind Nikita Kucherov for the NHL points lead. Malkin is four behind Kucherov. Crosby is six points off the points lead.

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About The Author

William DePaoli

TIOPS Insider

William DePaoli is the President/Founder of Inside Pittsburgh Sports LLC and can be reached at wdepaoli@insidepittsburghsports.com