PITTSBURGH (KDKA/AP) — The fans attending the Penguins’ 200th consecutive sellout didn’t get much of a show from the home team as the Montreal Canadiens skated to a 3-0 shutout win at the CONSOL Energy Center Saturday afternoon.
The Canadiens scored in the opening minutes of both the first and second periods, and the Pens were never able to recover.
Montreal’s Carey Price made 26 saves in the victory. The Pens’ Brent Johnson came into the game after Marc-Andre Fleury was pulled following the Canadians’ third goal.
The overflow crowd of 18,310 marked the Penguins’ 200th consecutive sellout, including 165 at Mellon Arena and 29 playoff games. Their record in those 200 games is 123-58-19, and the total attendance was 3,437,909.
Tomas Plekanec got the Canadiens on the board just 46 seconds into the game when he beat Jordan Staal on a faceoff, got around the Penguins center and sent a pass into the net.
Montreal is 21-2-3 when leading after the first period and 27-6-5 when scoring first.
Then, 24 seconds into the second period, Travis Moen made it 2-0 when he scored off of a turnover by defenseman Kris Letang.
Mike Cammalleri scored Montreal’s third goal at 6:51 into the second period. He also had an assist on Plekanec’s goal.
But that’s nothing new for Cammalleri. He torched the Pens for seven goals in the Canadiens’ seven-game playoff victory last spring, and his career regular-season totals against Pittsburgh are four goals and four assists in 10 games.
The injury-depleted Penguins had won two in a row for the first time since early February coming in and had displayed quality defense and a relentless work ethic for more than a month before all the lapses and lethargic play Saturday.
Meanwhile, the Canadiens continue to cope with the loss of winger Max Pacioretty, who sustained a severe concussion and fractured vertebra from a hard hit by Boston’s Zdeno Chara earlier this week.
The Penguins don’t have much to think about the loss as the Edmonton Oilers come to the CONSOL Energy Center Sunday at 3 p.m.