MONCTON, New Brunswick – The Pittsburgh Penguins closed out their Canadian Maritimes trip on Wednesday with a 5-4 win over the Philadelphia Flyers at the Moncton Coliseum.
However, the team got a couple scares along the way as Evgeni Malkin and Mark Recchi were both injured in separate plays and were taken to local hospitals on the evening.
Malkin, the Penguins’ star rookie, had a nasty collision with John LeClair 1:02 into the second period. Malkin fell awkwardly face-first onto the ice and left the game with an upper body injury.
Meanwhile, Recchi absorbed the brunt of a high stick to the face early in the contest. He remained on the ice and played for a while, but also left the game to be evaluated at a local hospital.
“Malkin will be evaluated further [Thursday] by doctors in Pittsburgh. We’ll just see how he’s doing and go from there,” Penguins General Manager Ray Shero said. “I was happy he got up because it looked [bad] with the way he went down.
“Mark will be evaluated [Thursday]. He got a stick in the face and we had him go get precautionary X-rays,” he continued. “We have to move on as a team and a group. I was real proud how the team played the second half of the game without him and Mark Recchi. It was a good win for the guys and we’ll move on to [Thursday] and see what the status is on the players.”
Sergei Gonchar opened the scoring when he ripped a slap-shot past Robert Esche 1:47 into the contest on a two-man advantage to give the Penguins a 1-0 lead. Micki DuPont and Malkin had assists.
Ryan Malone deflected Mark Eaton’s shot from the point past Esche with 6:55 left in the period to give the Penguins a 2-0 edge. Recchi added an assist on the power-play goal.
On a 2-on-1, Jeff Carter roofed a goal past Jocelyn Thibault with 4:06 on the clock to trim Philadelphia’s deficit to 2-1.
Gonchar made it a 3-1 game when he rifled a one-timer into the net 6:19 into the second. Colby Armstrong and Sidney Crosby picked up assists on the play.
The Flyers cut the margin to 3-2 with 4:51 remaining in the period when Mark Cullen scored a power-play goal.
Philadelphia knotted the game at 3-all 1:17 later on a goal from Mike Richards.
The Flyers grabbed a 4-3 advantage with a short-handed goal 2:54 into the third.
Crosby tied it 11 seconds later with a highlight-reel goal. He went coast-to-coast with the puck, blew past a defender and headed towards the end boards. He fired a shot at goaltender Martin Houle from behind the post and it bounced off his leg and trickled into the goal. Gonchar assisted on the play.
Late in the third period, Armstrong put the Penguins ahead, 5-4, when he took Crosby’s pass and backhanded it into the net.
Pittsburgh held off a furious Flyers charge to earn the win.
ICE CHIPS: Sidney Crosby, Sergei Gonchar and Mark Recchi all wore the alternate captain “A” for the Penguins on Wednesday…Crosby, Nils Ekman and Ryan Whitney wore the letter Tuesday night.