Now it’s time for Sidney Crosby to go on the road.
Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins will begin what should be an
entertaining four-game trip Saturday night when they face the
The Penguins superstar has seven points in three home games this
week in his return after missing nearly a year with post-concussion
symptoms. All of his three assists Friday came in the first period
as Pittsburgh (13-6-4) built a three-goal lead and cruised to a 6-3
victory over Ottawa.
“I had some good chances tonight that hopefully will go in
eventually,” said Crosby, who has failed to score a goal in his
last seven games at Bell Centre. “But yeah, the chances are there,
that’s what we want.”
What’s also notable about Crosby’s play is that he has eight
penalty minutes and has not shied away from contact. He mixed it up
with Ottawa’s Nick Foligno early in the third period, the start of
a brief dust-up in which they exchanged a couple of punches.
The big lead allowed the Penguins to experiment with the lines.
Crosby played alongside Evgeni Malkin and Jordan Staal for one
shift, failing to produce a goal but providing plenty of
“We play one shift, it’s three terrors, we surprised them,”
Malkin said. “We never played (together before) and had good
chances to score. I like it. It two great offensive guys who can
control the puck and make passes.”
Neither Crosby nor Malkin played when Pittsburgh defeated
Montreal (10-10-3) 3-1 on Oct. 20 in the first meeting this season.
Marc-Andre Fleury made 27 saves, improving to 7-3-0 with a 2.39
goals-against average in his last 10 starts against the
The goalie is enjoying playing even more now that Pittsburgh has
its stars back.
“I’m glad they’re on my team,” said Fleury, who stopped 24 shots
in Friday’s win. “Those guys are so skilled, so talented, they work
hard at it and it’s fun for them it’s paying off for them.”
Fleury has started the first game and Brent Johnson the second
in Pittsburgh’s first three sets of back-to-back games. Johnson is
0-4-1 with a 3.35 GAA in five starts against Montreal.
Pittsburgh will also face the Rangers, Capitals and Hurricanes
on its trip that begins with this matchup of two of the best
penalty-killing units in the NHL. The Penguins rank second in the
league at 90.8 percent and the Canadiens third at 90.3.
Montreal has killed off 40 straight power-play chances entering
this contest, but the Canadiens’ power play came up empty on five
attempts and proved to be their undoing in Friday’s 3-1 loss at
“Our power play gave them momentum,” coach Jacques Martin told
the Canadiens’ official website. “We weren’t able to create scoring
Carey Price has started both games in two of Montreal’s first
three sets of back-to-back contests. The Canadiens will have a
degree of extra rest since Friday’s defeat was played in the
afternoon, so Price could be back in goal to resume his stellar
Price had posted back-to-back home shutouts before making 17
saves but getting outdueled by Vezina Trophy winner Tim Thomas in
Monday’s 1-0 loss to Boston.