Sam Kasan gives his three impressions from the press box of the Pens’ 2-1 shootout win against the NY Islanders.
The Pens netted two big points in the standings against the Islanders, and the biggest reason why was the play of their goaltender. Marc-Andre Fleury made 25 saves in the contest, but was at his best in the third period, overtime and shootout. Fleury made two huge game-saving stops in overtime and then went a perfect 3-for-3 in the shootout to clinch the victory.
The Pens were facing a rookie goaltender who was only playing in his fourth career game. And he looked it. He was shaky at handling the puck, tracking and rebound control in the first two periods. But instead of making him pay by putting a lot of pucks on the net, the Pens kept trying to make the perfect play and the perfect pass. In Berube’s defnse, he was beyond brilliant in overtime and the reason this one extended to a shootout. The Pens overthinking their shot selection didn’t end up hurting them in the end, but it did allow the Islanders to hang around and steal a point.
The Pens only managed to score one goal in 65 minutes of hockey, and it came off of the stick of Chris Kunitz. The Pens forward, playing in his 800th career NHL game, drifted to the front of the net and tipped Brian Dumoulin’s shot into the top of the cage. Even though Pittsburgh couldn’t add on, that lone goal was enough for the Pens to win the game. It was Kunitz’s 14th goal of the season. So No. 14 scored No. 14 in No. 800.