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Penguins G Fleury quietly having career year

NHL.com @NHLdotcom

PITTSBURGH (AP) - From his nickname "Flower" to his "goofball" persona, Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury doesn't have the same menacing presence of some of the NHL's top netminders.

Fleury doesn't think he's much different now than he was when he broke into the league in 2003 as a fresh-faced 19-year-old. He came to a franchise in disarray then formed the backbone of an emerging league power after Pittsburgh rebuilt behind star centers Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin.

He's comfortable in the role even if it causes him to be overlooked when talking about the league's best goalies. Maybe it's time he entered the conversation. Fleury tied Tom Barrasso's franchise record for career shutouts with a win over the New York Rangers on Tuesday and could pass Barrasso's career victory total before the season is over.

Heady territory for a player who thinks his best days are ahead of him.

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