Track all the action from Pittsburgh's showdown with the Columbus Blue Jackets with our live in-game blog. Check back for stat updates, injury reports and other information.
FINAL SCORE: Penguins 4, Blue Jackets 3.
THIRD COLUMBUS ATTEMPT:
Kristian Huselius is stopped by the glove of Johnson.
SECOND PITTSBURGH ATTEMPT: Sidney Crosby
has his shot go off Mason and roll over the line for the goal.
SECOND COLUMBUS ATTEMPT:
Rick Nash misses the top of the net.
FIRST PITTSBURGH ATTEMPT: Kris Letang
gets Mason out of position but hits the post.
FIRST COLUMBUS ATTEMPT:
Antoine Vermette misses the net to the right of Johnson.
No score after 65 minutes, the Penguins and Blue Jackets head to a shootout, where Pittsburgh is 3-0 on the season. Crosby is 3-for-3 in shootouts in '09-10.
The smooth skating of Letang forces Voracek to take a hooking penalty or else Letang would have had a great chance to beat Mason in the slot.
Great breakup by Skoula to break up a two-on-one attempt by Columbus.
Johnson flashes the glove hand on a Stralman slapper from the right point.
Crosby and Dupuis nearly get quality cracks at the rebound of a Skoula shot.
Bouncing off defenders, Fedotenko carries into the Columbus end before a save by Mason denies him.
The Penguins are 3-0 when a game stretches beyond 60 minutes.
Two goals 39 seconds apart by Fedotenko and Goligoski allows the Penguins to overcome a two-goal deficit, tie the score, 3-3, and send the game to overtime, getting them at least one point.
The crowd at Nationwide Arena hasn't sat back down since the Goligoski score.
Goligoski ties the game, 3-3, on a wrist shot over the glove of Mason from center point. He is set up by a beautiful backhand pass from Crosby. Kunitz gets the other assist. Penguins 3, Blue Jackets 3.
Fedotenko gets the Pittsburgh faithful back into the game as he hammers home the rebound off the end boards of an errant shot by Martin Skoula. Orpik gets the other assist. Blue Jackets 3, Penguins 2.
3:09: A turnaround shot by Bourque hits the post.
The Blue Jackets are playing a 1-2-2 trap to negate any pressure the Penguins can generate through the neutral zone.
The Penguins kill off the penalty to Crosby.
Columbus again goes back up by a man as Crosby is sent off for slashing.
Mason cannot handle a long shot and the rebound comes to a streaking Kunitz. The Blue Jackets' netminder recovers to make the save.
The Penguins have gotten a couple odd-man rushes here the past few minutes and appear close to getting that second goal.
Staal crushes Nash with an open-ice hit in the neutral zone.
Carrying the puck on a two-on-one with Letang, Dupuis is driven hard into the Columbus net. Dupuis made a great move at the blue line to spur the rush.
The boards here at Nationwide Arena continue to prove tricky as a Columbus dump in bounces towards Johnson, but he alertly freezes the puck.
13:31: Sidney Crosby
spoke Thursday about how he expected a tight-checking, low-scoring game tonight against Columbus. Thus far, he has been on the money with his assessment. Listen to this and the rest of Crosby's comments in this post-practice scrum:
Johnson makes a glove save on Jason Chimera, who had been left open coming down the ice following a line change.
Mason continues to look sharp, gloving a slap shot through traffic off the stick of Pascal Dupuis
The Penguins are 0-for-4 on the power play.
Mason makes a helmet save on a chance by Kunitz off the rush.
The Penguins are now on their fourth power play as Rupp returns to the ice.
A one-handed power move by Staal shorthanded forces Stralman to take a hooking penalty.
The Penguins begin having to kill off 1:46 on a penalty to Rupp.
SECOND PERIOD NOTES:
Head coach Dan Bylsma talked this morning about wanting to give Jordan Staal
more ice time with Evgeni Malkin
sidelined. Through two periods his 12:56 is second among forwards to the 13:13 played by Crosby.
- The Penguins have the advantage in the hits column, 19-10. Mike Rupp has five and Matt Cooke
Darius Kasparaitus' made the trip to Columbus, as well as a strong contingent of Penguins fans.
After 40 minutes of action the score is 3-1 in favor of Columbus. The Blue Jackets also now lead in shots, 23-17.
Rupp goes off for interference just before the break.
Seconds after his penalty expires Pahlsson comes out of the box to spring Dorsett behind the defense. His forehand-backhand move beats Johnson. Vermette receives the other assist. Blue Jackets 3, Penguins 1.
Guerin's shot from the slot misses the net and comes hard off the end boards where Kunitz nearly banks the puck off the back of Mason.
Samuel Pahlsson, one of the Jackets best killers, is sent to the box for hooking.
Cooke registers the game's biggest hit when he nails Anton Stralman against the far boards in the Columbus end.
Johnson robs Brassard's wrist shot from the slot.
Johnson comes huge with a save on Voracek as the Jackets winger leads a two-on-one break into the Pittsburgh end.
It feels like Mellon Arena here as Penguin fans take over the arena with chants of "Let's Go Pens."
Great effort by Crosby and Kunitz to get the Penguins on the board with their second shorthanded goal of the season. Kunitz began the play with a diving, one-handed shot from his knees. Mason stopped that, as well as the rebound by Crosby. However Crosby stayed with the puck, circled behind the net and fed Kunitz in front for the score. Blue Jackets 2, Penguins 1.
Great block by Jay McKee shorthanded on a one-timer from the right circle by Vermette.
Pittsburgh is right back in the penalty box as Guerin goes off for hooking.
Mason draws applause by coming left-to-right to make a right arm save on Crosby in the slot, easily his best save of the night.
The Penguins kill the Bourque penalty. Columbus is 1-for-4 on the power play.
Columbus is on their fourth power play of the night as Bourque goes off for hooking.
Columbus increases their lead to 2-0 when Nash one-times a pass from Vermette past the stick of Johnson. Assists to Vermette and Commodore. Blue Jackets 2, Penguins 0.
Johnson makes a stick save on a long shot by Jakub Voracek.
The Penguins won nine of the 16 faceoffs in the first period.
Taking a shift with Crosby, Conner makes a nice power move to the net and nearly sets the Penguins captain up in the slot.
The teams are back on the ice as the second period begins.
The pre-game festivities included a cover band that played such songs as, "Machine Head," "I Alone" and "Use Somebody," and some games for fans to enjoy.
FIRST PERIOD NOTES:
- Mark Eaton and Martin Skoula led the Penguins with two blocked shots apiece.
- Letang was on the ice for 8:12 of ice time.
Mason stops a shot by Kunitz from the bottom of the right circle at the buzzer. Columbus leads, 1-0, after 20 minutes. The Penguins outshoot Columbus, 12-11.
The Penguins take exception to Columbus running Johnson over in his crease. Penalties are assessed to Orpik and Derek Dorsett. Dorsett gets the extra two.
Columbus breaks the ice on the power play. Nash converts a rebound from his knees to beat Johnson. Assists go to Derick Brassard and R.J. Umberger. Blue Jackets 1, Penguins 0.
A Pittsburgh turnover leads to a three-on-one break for the Blue Jackets. Nash sees Johnson make a blocker save on his shot, and Brooks Orpik
takes a slashing penalty on the play as he breaks the stick of Kristian Huselius, who would've otherwise had an open net.
Not seeing a shot in a couple minutes, Johnson is out on his crease to glove a Columbus point shot.
Another scrum ensues in front of Mason as Crosby and Chris Kunitz
get involved with a trio of Blue Jacket defenders.
As Mason catches a shot from Fedotenko in the chest, fans from both teams attempt to drown the other out with chants of "Let's Go Pens" and "Let's Go Jackets."
The game at times almost feels like an old-fashioned college rivalry.
Conner has made things happen offensively each of his first two shifts. He nearly just caught Mason by surprise with a long-range wrist shot streaking down the left boards.
Cooke's penalty expires and the Blue Jackets are now 0-for-2 with the man-advantage.
With both Malkin and Gonchar out, Bill Guerin is serving as an alternate captain this evening.
Cooke is sent to the sin bin for high-sticking. Columbus is currently 0-for-1 on the power play.
Johnson uses the left pad to rob a low shot from Vermette coming down the slot.
The line of Bill Guerin-Chris Conner-Mike Rupp registers several great chances, as Mason comes up huge.
As previously mentioned, Evgeni Malkin
will be missing the next 2-3 weeks with a shoulder strain. Listen to what head coach Dan Bylsma had to say about the loss of Malkin on Thursday when the injury was disclosed:
Bourque is back and both teams have five skaters.
Johnson is quick to react to a deflection by Rick Nash in the slot.
14:50: Brent Johnson
gets acclimated to the game as he comes across to make a blocker save on Kris Russell.
Columbus is now on the power play as the penalty to Blunden expires.
Pittsburgh's power play is negated when Bourque goes off for hooking.
Bourque records the first shot of the night off a rush but Steve Mason makes the shoulder save.
Pittsburgh gets the first power play of the evening. Michael Blunden is sent off for high-sticking. Chris Kunitz
takes Malkin's spot on the first power-play unit.
Tempers stir after the whistle as the Blue Jackets take exception to a Matt Cooke
hit on Commodore in the near corner of the Columbus end.
19:14: Jordan Staal
is centering his new line with Chris Bourque and Ruslan Fedotenko.
The puck is dropped between Sidney Crosby
and Antoine Vermette.
STAT OF THE NIGHT:
Rick Nash is tied for the league lead with two shorthanded goals.
Winger Chris Conner, recalled from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Thursday night, will be wearing No. 23 in his Pittsburgh debut.
The Penguins bring their perfect 5-0 road record to Columbus to take on the Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena. For the first time since Oct. 14, 2006, the Penguins will be without Evgeni Malkin
, sidelined 2-3 weeks with a shoulder strain. Sergei Gonchar and the recently-recalled Mark Letestu are the Penguins' other scratches. Rookie Nikita Filatov is the only Columbus scratch.