It wasn’t the most impressive effort in Buffalo last night, but when the game was on the line, the Penguins took control.
Marc-Andre Fleury was named as the game’s first star and deservedly so. The Flower came up with countless big saves through the first two periods to lead the Pens to their 12th straight win. He finished the game with 34 saves.
His best save came in the third period on former Penguin, Jordan Leopold.
Fleury slid across the crease to his right and stoned Leopold from point-blank range. The Pens went back the other way and Alex Goligoski got a fortunate bounce in front of Ryan Miller to score the eventual game-winning goal.
I barely had enough time to tweet “remember that save by Fleury” before I was annoying my neighbors with an emphatic goal celebration.
One thing that was a bit worrisome was the lack of shots on net through two periods. Heading into the second intermission, the Pens were being outshot 26-13, yet had a 2-1 lead.
Not only did the Penguins extend their wining streak to 12 games, Sidney Crosby extended his point streak to 18 games with an assist on Goligoski’s goal.
It wasn’t looking good for Crosby, as he had several chances denied by Miller through the first two periods.
The best chance Crosby had was at the very end of a long shift, where he walked in on a breakaway. He had Miller down and flopping like a fish out of water, but fired a backhanded over the net.
You have to give the Sabres credit though. They played physical on Crosby and limited his chances.
However, the rest of the team stepped up and showed why they’re on a 14-0-1 run.
Dustin Jeffrey was inserted into the lineup and centered the fourth line with Craig Adams and Mike Rupp.
It didn’t take long for that line to make its presence known as Jeffrey deflected a puck over Miller to give the Pens a 1-0 lead just 6:43 into the game.
Jeffrey would later set up Mike Rupp at the top of the crease for the fourth Penguins goal that sealed the deal.
Pittsburgh is now ahead of the Philadelphia Flyers by one point in the Atlantic Division standings.
Guess who the Penguins play on Tuesday night on the road?
This will be the fourth meeting already this season between the two teams. The road team has won all three games so far.
In addition, the Flyers have won two straight games and are 6-1-3 in their last 10.
This could be the perfect game for the Pens to keep the streak alive. With the division lead on the line, the Flyers are going to be pumped up to play and will want to be the ones to snap the winning streak.
The Penguins always bring their best effort against the Flyers so it should be a good game.