0:00: Brent Johnson
has his first shutout since April 1, 2006! Johnson stopped all 33 shots to improve to 5-0-1 on the season. Pascal Dupuis
did his part with a pair of goals. Sidney Crosby
contributed two assists and Maxime Talbot registered his second goal of the year. The final score: 3-0 in favor of the Penguins!
Carolina will finish on the penalty kill as Deryk Engelland
picked up a roughing call.
2:24: Brent Johnson
is looking at his first shutout since April 1, 2006 when he made 46 saves with the Washington Capitals in a victory over the Ottawa Senators.
Just as I was getting the embed codes for those Dupuis videos, Pascal had to go and take a tripping minor.
5:22: Pascal Dupuis
' two goals give him a pair of goals in the same game since Nov. 14 of last season when he tallied twice, including the overtime game winner, in a thrilling 6-5 defeat of the Boston Bruins at Mellon Arena.
Carolina is able to kill off the Pitkanen minor.
We have a rare power play for the Penguins as Pitkanen is off to the sin bin for roughing.
That might be the crushing blow right there. Crosby blocks a Jamie McBain shot, which leads to a two-on-one between Dupuis and Goligoski. Dupuis rips a snap shot from the near circle past Ward for his second goal of the night. Penguins 3, Hurricanes 0.
Both penalties are over as the Penguins stay perfect on the penalty kill.
Carolina will have a 47-second two-man advantage because Goligoski had to take a hooking penalty to prevent Skinner from tallying off a bad bounce off the end boards again.
Penguins defenseman Kris Letang
may or may not return due to an undisclosed injury. Oh, and Johnson just made another great save, this time with his glove on a stuff-in attempt by Staal at the side of the crease.
Right off a faceoff the Penguins Mark Letestu picks up an interference minor after hauling a Hurricane into the Penguins net.
Carolina has been coming on a bit offensively, but all their chances have been shut down by the human wall that is Johnson. Skinner just had a slap shot from the right circle, but Johnson grabbed it out of the air.
OH MY WOWZERS! Jiri Tlusty had an open net - I mean a wide-open net - but instead of cutting the Canes' deficit to one, Johnson dove across his crease and made a spectacular stick save. Tlusty didn't get great wood, but that doesn't take away from what Johnson did.
A win against the Hurricanes would be a great way to begin this four-game road trip.
SECOND PERIOD NOTES:
- Hits are now 19-17 in favor of the Penguins.
- The Penguins have 12 takeaways thus far, including three by Kris Letang
- Sidney Crosby
and Alex Goligoski each have four shots on goal.
Two periods are now complete here at RBC Center and it's the Penguins who possess the 2-0 lead over the Hurricanes. Shots on goal are 23-22 in favor of the Penguins, as the Canes outshoot Pittsburgh, 16-13, in the middle frame.
Speaking of Jim Valvano, whom I referenced earlier, you can't help but be touched by his speech about 'never giving up' speech at the 1993 ESPY Awards.
Carolina thought they were going to capitalize on a bad bounce off the back boards, but before Brandon Sutter could tuck the rubber into the cage, Johnson slid over and made the pad save.
7:41: Brent Johnson
looks sharp yet again - not that it's a surprise at this point. He just snarled an Anton Babchuk slap shot with his catching mitt to make another great stop.
The Penguins have to kill a penalty for the third time as Chris Kunitz
is in the penalty box for hooking.
The RBC Center is also home to the North Carolina State basketball team. Every time I hear the word 'NC State' I always think of the late, great Jim Valvano.
That could have been a back-breaking goal for the Penguins. Comrie picked off a clearing pass and sent a turnaround shot at Ward that was deflected in front by Eric Godard on the way towards Ward, who found a way to recover and keep the puck out of the cage.
One of Johnson's best saves of the game as he gets to the top of his crease and kicks away Patrick O'Sullivan's blast from the left circle with a kick save.
Great passing play and the Penguins are up by two! Asham caught up to a puck on the left side streaking into Hurricanes zone. He lifted a great feed onto the blade of Talbot in the right circle. Talbot had the puck roll off his blade - but it rolled off under Ward and into the net. Penguins 2, Hurricanes 0.
Great pressure by the Kunitz-Crosby-Dupuis line following a faceoff. Dupuis and Crosby each had great looks from the top of the crease as the Penguins did a good job of working their offense from behind the net.
I just got done playing a quick 10-minute knee hockey game with my 4-year-old cousin Sean. I battled him hard, but in the end he registered the 5-2 victory over me. I just couldn't quite get to my game against a quality opponent.
FIRST PERIOD NOTES:
- The Penguins held an 8-5 advantage on faceoffs, led by Mark Letestu (4-0).
- Lestestu, Alex Goligoski and Tyler Kennedy
each had two shots on goal.
- Pittsburgh blocked 7 Carolina shots in the first period.
What a great first period by the Penguins, who own a 1-0 lead over the Hurricanes after 20 minutes on a Dupuis goal. Shots on goal are 10-7 in favor of the Penguins as well.
Letestu just showed off his sneaky wrist shot again, using the defenseman as a screen, but Ward somehow found the puck with his glove through a defenseman's legs.
Pittsburgh has killed off both Carolina power plays here in the first period. For the most part, they have done so with ease, although on that one Johnson did have to make a good pad save on Pitkanen's blast from the center point.
18-year-old rookie Jeff Skinner, who had a three-point night (2G-1A) last night in a 4-3 victory over the New York Rangers, just drew a tripping penalty against the Penguins Ben Lovejoy
A much better job that time by the Penguins of setting up shop and getting shots toward the net, but Carolina is able to kill off the Staal minor.
Pittsburgh gets their first crack on the man-advantage as Eric Staal decided to take a bad offensive-zone slashing penalty following a great defensive play by Brooks Orpik
What has impressed me the most this season about Kris Letang
? Yeah, I like the way he is putting points up on a consistent basis, but the way he is using his speed to get back and cover up turnovers created by him or teammates has been impressive. Defensemen are always going to have giveaways - it just goes with the position - but the way Letang is recovering from the few he is making is what has him playing at an elite level right now.
One thing I'm already noticing here tonight is the Penguins doing a much better job of crashing the net looking for rebounds and attempting to screen Cam Ward. It's something head coach Dan Bylsma had the team working on earlier in the week.
That was a great penalty kill by the Penguins, as they kept the Hurricanes to the outside and allowed them very few attack zone minutes.
The Penguins are going to have to come up with a big penalty kill because Tyler Kennedy
was just given a roughing penalty following a scrum in Ward's crease.
Beautiful goal right there by Pascal Dupuis
to put the Penguins on the board first. Skating down the ice two-on-one with Sidney Crosby
against Carolina blueliner Joni Pitkanen, Dupuis held onto the puck, looked off Crosby and turned the puck to his backhand before sneaking a shot through the wickets of Ward. Penguins 1, Hurricanes 0.
The Penguins answer a good Carolina shift with one of their own. Mark Letestu was absolutely robbed by Cam Ward from the low slot as the Hurricanes netminder made a great pad save.
Johnson makes a couple of big saves on the opening shift as the Hurricanes come out flying against the Penguins, who are wearing their blue third jerseys for the second time this season.
Let's see if the Penguins can pick up the 'W' without Evgeni Malkin
It looks as if Eric Godard will take Malkin's place in the lineup. He will skate on the fourth line with Mike Rupp and Craig Adams
. Arron Asham
will play the left wing on the second line with Mark Letestu at center and Mike Comrie on right wing.
In addition to Malkin not being able to suit up, Brent Johnson
will make his sixth start of the season in goal. Johnson is 4-0-1 on the season and ranks second in GAA and save percentage.
Breaking News: Evgeni Malkin
will not dress tonight for the Penguins. We will get you more details in minutes.
The Penguins take the ice in Carolina as they face the Hurricanes to kick off a four-game road swing. Pittsburgh is currently 3-1-1 on the season away from CONSOL Energy Center, the fifth-best road record in the NHL.