0:00: A great start to this five-game road swing as the Penguins come away victorious with a 4-1 victory. Marc-Andre Fleury
made 41 saves in goal and Sergei Gonchar returned to the lineup with two goals and an assist. The Penguins will next be in action on Monday night for an 8 p.m. tilt on Versus.
Fleury is making saves right until the end here in Toronto. This time it is Jamal Mayers stopped by the Penguins netminder.
A diving setup from Rupp gave Crosby a shot from point-blank range but that time Gustavsson was there to make the save.
Thanks to a couple big saves and several blocked shots the Penguins kill the penalty to Talbot.
Fleury keeps making spectacular save after spectacular save. This time he uses his right skate to prevent Kessel from scoring while on his back.
Talbot is in the penalty box for tripping.
Colton Orr tried to get Fedotenko to drop the gloves but he wanted no part of the Maple Leafs tough guy. A wise decision by Fedotenko.
This time Fleury stones Stajan with his blocker as the penalty to Fedotenko expires.
Fleury has Blake snakebitten right now. He comes across his crease to catch his shot with his left arm. Fleury now has 29 saves.
Ian White takes exception to Fedotenko drilling him into the boards. The two mix it up after the play. Fedotenko is given a boarding penalty.
A great pokecheck by Fleury on Blake who was looking at a great scoring chance from right in front of the cage.
The Penguins are looking for a sweep at the Air Canada Centre after a 5-2 victory here back on Oct. 10:
Unbelievable goal from Crosby to give the Penguins a three-goal lead. He takes a pass from Dupuis sprinting through the neutral zone, turns Kaberle inside-out and sends the puck between the legs of Gustavsson with a one-handed shot. Penguins 4, Maple Leafs 1.
A little pushing and shoving in front of the net between Lee Stempniak and Max Talbot.
The Penguins look to finish off their second win in three games as they begin this five-game homestand.
SECOND PERIOD NOTES:
- The Penguins have rebounded to take a 19-17 advantage in faceoffs.
- Alex Goligoski leads the Penguins with 15:19 of ice time.
- Pittsburgh is up to 22 blocked shots.
Time expires on a middle frame owned by the Penguins. They will take a 3-1 advantage into the final period and are outshooting the Maple Leafs, 33-21.
Gonchar steps back onto the ice following his penalty and quickly adds his second goal of the night. Malkin brings the puck over the line and drops a pass to Gonchar, whose one-timer beats Gustavsson over the glove hand. Penguins 3, Maple Leafs 1.
Toronto fans wanted a goaltender interference penalty to be assessed to Adams after he collided with Gustavsson after a rush but Adams was trying to avoid contact. The Penguins have also killed the Gonchar penalty.
Not really sure what is going on but no penalty shot, the goal counts and Gonchar is sent to the box for hooking. I guess the positive is no penalty shot. We will try to get clarification why this is the case.
What a way to take the lead! Gonchar absolutely blasts a shot through traffic off the right post into the back post. It happened so quickly play was allowed to resume. Ponikarovsky raced to the ensuing loose puck and was tripped by Gonchar on the breakaway, which would have been a penalty shot. That all became moot when replay confirmed the puck was in the net. Penguins 2, Maple Leafs 1.
Gustavsson continues to be very impressive denying second-chance opportunities. He held a Malkin shot from the slot and covered up before Cooke could get to the rebound.
Finger gives the Penguins a third crack at the No. 30 ranked penalty-killing unit by taking a holding penalty.
Nobody picked up Dupuis in front of Gustavsson but the pass between he and Crosby was unable to connect.
How about this for irony!? George Naismith, the inventor of basketball, predominantly an American sport, was actually born in Canada.
Pittsburgh is 0-for-2 on the power play.
Alexei Ponikarovsky gets the best chance thus far during the Beauchemin minor but Fleury was there to make the save on the Leafs winger.
Francois Beauchemin is in the penalty box for hooking Fedotenko.
Wow what a recovery by Eaton. Hagman had a step on the Penguins defender and was looking at a breakaway but Eaton was able to poke the puck off his stick with a diving effort before he could get a shot off.
Gustavsson does the splits and snarls a Letang shot out of the air with a remarkable glove save as the Penguins break into the zone three-on-two.
The women also got into the action last night at Mellon Arena as the Robert Morris women's team suffered a 4-2 loss to the University of Connecticut. RMU made a valient comeback in the third period with two goals but just came up short.
Gustavsson just stoned Caputi's one-timer with a pad save on the Penguins winger. Malkin made a great centering pass to Caputi.
The Staal line cycles the puck down low for an extended stretch as the Penguins try to get the momentum back after Toronto's late first-period goal.
Great job by Fleury to use his glove and his blocker to catch a point shot by Jeff Finger and secure a faceoff.
A reminder once again, the Penguins will play the remainder of the game without the services of Brooks Orpik
Both teams are back on the ice and ready to resume the action.
FIRST PERIOD NOTES:
- The Penguins blocked 15 shots in the opening period, led by four for Mark Eaton.
- Pittsburgh outhit the Maple Leafs, 8-6.
- In his return to action Sergei Gonchar led all skaters with 8:18 of ice time.
After 20 minutes at the Air Canada Centre the score is 1-1. Pittsburgh carried the play for much of the opening period and holds a 15-8 advantage in shots.
Phil Kessel stopped along the left boards and fed Matt Stajan standing in the slot. Stajan's one-timer is a rocket over the glove of Fleury for the power-play goal. Kessel and Tomas Kaberle get the assists. Penguins 1, Maple Leafs 1.
It's now Toronto getting a crack on the power play as Kris Letang
is penalized for slashing.
We have seen a glimpse here in the first period why the Maple Leafs are so high on Gustavsson. He just absolutely robbed Pascal Dupuis
' re-direct chance from in tight.
The Penguins will play the remainder of the game without Brooks Orpik
, who is out with an undisclosed injury.
Take a look at the luxary boxes and club level at Air Canada Centre.
Great job by Gustavsson to deny Caputi from right in front. Caputi was set up nicely by Malkin, who delayed at the blue line and allowed Caputi to get to the front of the net.
Fleury makes a right-pad save on Jason Blake in the slot. Blake has 25 goals in 48 career games against the Penguins.
Toronto is able to kill off the Exelby penalty despite great chances by the Penguins.
Garnet Exelby first took a run at Mike Rupp but when he went after Craig Adams
seconds later, he took a tripping penalty.
As you can see, Toronto has won their fair share of Stanley Cups. But it's the fact that their last one occured in 1967 that has their fans in such an uproar.
Pittsburgh holds a 6-4 advantage in shots thus far.
What a night at Mellon Arena last night as Robert Morris upset No. 1 ranked Miami of Ohio, 3-1, in the marquee matchup of the Pittsburgh College Hockey Showcase. It was the Colonials first-ever win against a No. 1 team. Chris Kushneriuk, J.C. Velasquez, and Stefan Salituro scored for RMU while Brooks Ostergard made 39 saves in goal.
Seconds after Gustavsson once again stopped Crosby the Penguins do get the puck behind the guy they call "Monster." Mark Eaton passes the puck from the center point to Crosby in the right corner. The Penguins captain throws a backhand pass to Guerin standing alone at the top of the crease. Guerin directs the puck behind Gustavsson with his skate but replay confirms it was not intentional. Penguins 1, Maple Leafs 0.
Great save with the blocker by Gustavsson on a slap shot from Tyler Kennedy
at the top of the right-wing circle.
15:49: Marc-Andre Fleury
, back in the net for the Penguins, makes his first big save with the right pad on Niklas Hagman.
Penguins winger Luca Caputi has 30-35 family members at tonight's game. He is from the Toronto area.
Crosby and Bill Guerin came down two-on-one against Gustavsson but Crosby's shot went off the Maple Leaf logo on his sweater.
There was a late start to tonight's game as referee Don Van Massenhoven was honored for working his 1,000th career game.
The Penguins look to complete the sweep of the Maple Leafs at the Air Canada Centre on "Hockey Night in Canada."
STAT OF THE NIGHT:
Something will have to give in tonight's game as the NHL's No. 30 power play (Penguins) goes head-to-head with the league's No. 30 penalty-killing unit (Toronto).
The Penguins will get their first look at Swedish import Jonas Gustavsson tonight. Vesa Toskala started the first two games against Pittsburgh. Gustavsson is 8-8-7 with a 2.93 goals-against average and a .904 save percentage.
We have the lineups for tonight's game and the Penguins will have both Sergei Gonchar and Ruslan Fedotenko back in the lineup. Gonchar will skate with Mark Eaton while Fedotenko will be on a unit with Evgeni Malkin
and Luca Caputi. Eric Godard and Martin Skoula are the Penguins scratches. Mike Komisarek, Wayne Primeau and Mikhail Grabovski are out for Toronto.
The Penguins begin a five-game trek tonight in Toronto. Pittsburgh and the Maple Leafs have split the season series thus far, with each team winning once in the other's building. On Oct. 10 the Penguins rode two Sidney Crosby
tallies to a 5-2 victory at the Air Canada Centre while the Leafs returned the favor with a 4-3 victory thanks to Ian White's goal with 1:22 remaining in regulation.
Author: Jason Seidling