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Nasreddine, Crosby reminisce about Devils coach's only NHL goal

Penguins forward set up former Pittsburgh defenseman's lone tally in 2006

by Mike G. Morreale @mikemorrealeNHL / Staff Writer

Alain Nasreddine's first NHL goal

Alain Nasreddine scores first NHL goal vs. Canadiens

Alain Nasreddine scores his first NHL goal against the Canadiens as a member of the Penguins in 2006

  • 04:32 •

NEWARK, N.J. -- Sidney Crosby remembers, like it was yesterday, the way Alain Nasreddine celebrated after scoring his only NHL goal.

That's because the Pittsburgh Penguins captain earned the primary assist on the goal by Nasreddine after the defenseman skated into the slot, collected the pass, and scored on a wrist shot late in the first period of a 6-3 loss to the Montreal Canadiens at Bell Centre in Montreal on Dec. 16, 2006.

"Sid was just 19 at the time but already an elite player in the League, and it just demonstrates how great and how good Sidney Crosby is to be able to set me up for a goal," said Nasreddine, now coach of the New Jersey Devils.

The Devils played the Penguins at Prudential Center on Tuesday, which was a perfect opportunity for Crosby and Nasreddine to reminisce about the goal and on-ice celebration.

"I think there was three or four seconds left in the period," Crosby said. "It was rare to see him in front of the net as a defenseman in the offensive zone, but he knew time was ticking away and he came down in the slot and scored.

"That was great for him being in his hometown. I remember the big celebration, but I think that first goal for all of us is pretty special and to do it in his hometown was pretty cool."

The 44-year-old coach, who played 74 NHL games, won't ever forget the night Crosby set him up but also felt he went overboard during his celebration.

"It was quite embarrassing," Nasreddine said. "It was like we won Game 7 of the Stanley Cup. Guys still me grief for it, but it had been a while. I played a lot of games waiting for that first goal (30), and it happened in Montreal in front of friends and family.

"There were a lot of emotions that went through me at that time. I'm the kind of guy who will show his emotions, and when you look at the celebration, it shows."

Crosby said Nasreddine's excitement was perfect.

"I loved it," the Penguins center said. "That's just pure emotion. When you see guys score their first NHL goal, that's a celebration you will always remember. He shouldn't be embarrassed by that at all. That's what it's all about."

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