Thoughts, musings and observations from the Pens' 3-2 shootout loss against the Calgary Flames at PPG Paints Arena.
*Entering the game all of the conversations circled around Sidney Crosby and if he would record the 3 points he needed to reach the incredible 1,000-career point milestone.
Unfortunately for those in attendance, Crosby did not reach the milestone. But he did chip away at it.
Crosby set up Chris Kunitz's third-period goal to give him 998 career points.
The quest for 1,000 now stands at 2.
*Though they didn't win, the Pens gave themselves a chance in the shootout thanks to an incredible job by the PK unit. The Flames have scored the third-most power-play goals (t-39) in the NHL entering the game and their PP ranked 7th in the league in conversation rate.
Things looked dicey when Pittsburgh was shorthanded in the overtime session. However, some gutsy blocks, intense effort and sick goaltending helped Pittsburgh stave off the Flames. The kill energized the crowd and gave the Pens a chance to win.
*Jake Guentzel snapped a 7-game goal-less drought at just the right time. Guentzel scored with just 4:45 left in the third period to tie the game at 2-2 and force overtime.
Guenztel was hot early in his call up to Pittsburgh with 2 goals in his first career NHL game, and 3 in his first 4 contests. But he has gone cold since then. It's a good sign seeing him breaking through again. He has the talent to score, and the Pens need him to deliver and be a difference maker.
*Much credit belongs to Ian Cole on the Guentzel goal. He pinched into the zone to steal a clearing attempt. He then laid a perfect pass over to Guentzel, who one-timed it home.
*Matt Murray did his part in goal for the Pens. In fact, he made 2 spectacular saves as the Pens were trailing to keep the Flames at just 2 goals. Thus, allowing Pittsburgh to steal a point in the game. The first was a quick pad stop on Sean Monahan. Later he made a sliding pad save on Michael Frolik. Those 2 stops are the reason Pittsburgh was able to pick up a valuable point in the standings.