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Penguins-Panthers In-Game Blog

by Sam Kasan / Pittsburgh Penguins

0:00: The Penguins prevail. Pittsburgh gets its second win in a row. Now it's off to Washington tonight for Round 1 Thursday evening.

0:27: Dupuis seals the game with an empty-net goal. Sound the alarm. This one is over. Penguins 5, Panthers 2

0:58: Fleury takes a shot at scoring a goal, but his shot travels just wide of the post.

1:30: Kennedy takes a shot at the empty net, but misses. The Panthers touch for icing.

3:35: The Panthers got another goal as McCabe scores. Meanwhile, Lovejoy got hit by a shot in the face and shed a lot of blood.

5:01: Penalty expires.

5:49: Crosby nearly got his second, but Clemmensen just got a piece of a high shot with his glove.

7:00: Pens back on the power play. Pad the stats?

8:19: Higgins picked up a puck in the neutral zone and sprinted on a breakaway. He tried five-hole and was denied by Fleury!!!!

9:10: Talbot makes a great play with the puck to get around a defender, but his shot is stopped by Clemmensen.

9:44: Update on Johnson. He has a lower-body injury and will not return.

10:33: Conner nearly scored on a backhander. The puck went just a bit high.

12:17: Fleury gloves down a puck. He's looked strong in his relief duty. After the whistle we got to hear Nirvana's "Breed." Love that song.

13:40: Letestu makes a great play in a backcheck to prevent a scoring chance for Florida.

15:54: Orpik just absolutely crushed Bernier in front of the net, sending the forward to the ice with a broken stick. That's how you clear the crease.

17:31: Letang goes to the box after hitting Hordichuk in the O zone.

18:18: Malkin went hard feet-first into the boards. Thankfully, he got up immediately and appears alright.

20:00: Interesting development as Marc-Andre Fleury takes over in goal for Johnson. Not sure the reason, but we'll try to find out.

- Lovejoy gets first-career goal
- Adams has a game-high 4 hits
- Martin has 16:16 TOI

FSN is giving away flat screen TVs, Penguins jerseys and a Penguins recliner as part of the “Great Gift Giveaway” on Thursday, Dec. 23 when the Penguins take on the Washington Capitals.

Watch the Penguins game on FSN for the keyword of the period then complete the online entry form to register to win! Click here for details.

0:00: Period over. Pens hold a 4-1 lead. Lovejoy gets his first-career goal. Johnny had a very strong second period, stopping all 13 shots he faced.

1:53: The Panthers get flagged for goaltender interference. We'll have 12 seconds of 4-on-4 before Pittsburgh takes the advantage.

A guy proposed to his girlfriend (I assume) during the last TV timeout. I guess she said yes because there was much rejoicing in the air. He also took the camera time as an opportunity to pull up his shirt and reveal a Pens logo tattooed on his chest. Atta boy.

3:41: The Panthers kill off the penalty and will go on the power play as Kennedy gets called on interference.

6:10: Speaking of Kulikov, he's going to the box for tripping.

6:31: BBBBBIIIIIGGGG glove save from Johnson on Matthias' shot in the near circle. Then he smothers a slapper from the point by Kulikov.

7:56: Rupp squares off with Hordichuk. A friendly scrap.

9:20: Great play by Crosby behind his own net of stealing the puck, sheilding the puck and clearing the zone. These are the things that make him by far the best player in the world, all-around game.

13:41: The Pens just added to their lead. Lovejoy picked up a weak clearing attempt in the far corner and whipped a shot that went off Wideman's knee and into the goal. Keep that puck! It's Lovejoy's first career NHL goal. He needs an assist to record a Gordie Howe hat trick. Penguins 4, Panthers 1

16:40: Great backcheck by Malkin, using that long reach and stick to steal the puck from Higgins. That's when you know Geno is on his game, when he's a pest on the back check and using his stick to force turnovers.

18:04: Johnson with another good save on Reasoner's shot from the slot. Johnson is being active with those pads, and is quickly getting down to cover the low ice.

19:06: Johnson with a strong pad save on a one-timer by Santorelli. Pens kill the penalty.

20:00: Ready, GO!

- Pens put up 17 shots in the first period, more than Florida's 8
- Crosby > Panthers. Sid has four shots, one goal and is 7-1 in faceoffs
- 11 Penguins have a plus rating right now

0:00: That'll do it for the first period. Pens lead 3-1. Crosby extends his point streak to 22 games (tied for second-longest since 1992-93). Vokoun gets chased. Cooke and Letestu also on the board.

0:02: Pittsburgh's PK blocked a couple shots and get out of the first period unscatched. Great stick work by Michalek in front to stop a point-blank shot from Bernier above the crease.

1:03: Orpik gets called for interference.

3:34: Great sustained pressure by Crosby's line with Letang and Goligoski at the points. The 5 Guys kept the puck in the O zone for over a minute and created two great scoring opportunities.

8:27: David Booth lets a heavy shot go that Johnson eats up.

8:38: Lovejoy goes to toe-to-toe with Shawn Matthias. The scrap ends as Lovejoy pulls down the Panther.

9:03: The Pens net their third goal in the opening 10 minutes as Cooke finds a centering pass from Malkin and whips a shot through Vokoun's five-hole. That's it for Vokoun. He'll hit the showers as Scott Clemmensen takes over. Penguins 3, Panthers 1

9:36: Asham rips a slapper from the near dot. A scramble ensues for the rebound and it nearly gets poked across the goal line.

12:16: Crosby streak hits 22 games, which ties Dany Heatley for the second-longest streak since Mats Sundin notched a 30-game streak in 1992-93. Crosby carried the puck down the far side and just blasted a slap shot into the net. Penguins 2, Panthers 1

14:26: Letestu gets a good shot off from the near circle, but Vokoun makes the save. Jason Seidling just told me that the Pens are 4-0 this year when Letestu scores a goal.

16:22: Some aggressive swings exchanged between Letang and Bryan Allen in front of the crease. It's good to see Letang getting fired up.

16:40: Santorelli gets two for interference. Your Penguins are on the Power Play Power Play. Here we go!!!

17:17: The Panthers counter quickly with their own goal. Stephen Weiss carried down the near side and ripped a shot that sneaked under Johnson's arm. Penguins 1, Panthers 1

18:30: The Pens strike first. Pittsburgh won a puck battle on the wall in its own zone and countered quickly up ice. Kennedy found the trailing man, Mark Letestu. Letestu waited as Vokoun panicked and made the first move. Letestu slid the puck past the goalie's pads for the score. Penguins 1, Panthers 0

19:00: Some great stick handling by Malkin, who did circles around the offensive zone before setting up Goligoski for a one-timer. His shot was consumed by Vokoun.

20:00: Aaaaaaaand begin!


7:03 PM: Fox Chapel's Bill Thomas will start the game for Florida. Bill was a great guy and I was sad to see him leave the Pens organization. I wish him and his family nothing but the best.

7:00 PM: Brent Johnson will get the start in net. Ben Lovejoy will get into the action.



6:50 PM: It's a hockey night in Pittsburgh!!! The Pens will square off with the Florida Panthers in a few minutes at CONSOL Energy Center. Both teams are coming off of lopsided triumphs on Monday with Pittsburgh winning, 6-1, over Phoenix and Florida besting the Flyers, 5-0.

We are seven minutes from puck drop and Baby I'm Ready to Go. So is Republica.

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