PENGUINS 3 – PREDATORS 0
The Pittsburgh Penguins (4-2-1, 9 pts) played one of their most complete games of the season, en route to a 3-0 win over the Nashville Predators on Saturday night.
Marc Andre Fleury made 25 saves, earning his 29th career shutout. Fleury also recorded his 13th career assist, assisting on Evgeni Malkin’s third period goal.
Sidney Crosby had a goal and two assists in the victory. Crosby turned in a dominant performance after going pointless in the Penguins previous two games.
The Penguins through the first forty minutes did an excellent job of limiting high quality chances and defended the high slot area very well for most of the night. The Penguins game planned well for the Predators. “Nashville is a team that comes in wide and hit the slot with a lot of play and I think we took that away tonight,” Mike Johnston told reporters in his post-game comments of the Penguins defending the slot.
Nashville had just 12 shots on goal through the first two periods.
Two early power play goals in the third period from the Penguins would sink the Predators. Evgeni Malkin (3) redirected a pass from Sidney Crosby to make it 2-0 on the power play at 2:03 of the third period. It was Malkin’s third goal of the season and sixth power play point of the young season.
Moments later James Neal on an extended shift took an offensive-zone penalty, 1:47 after Malkin’s goal to put the Penguins back on the power play. Pascal Dupuis gave the Penguins a 3-0 lead with a power play marker at 5:25 of the period. The goal was Dupuis third of the season and 400th career point.
Crosby was right in the mix of things once again picking up his third point of the night on the Dupuis goal. The Penguins went 2-for-3 on the power play and 3-3 on the penalty kill.