I suppose the Penguins were seriously upset about the loss in Ottawa on Friday night. Tonight the Pens played the Sabres in Pittsburgh just 24 hours after their game against the Senators that resulted in a 6-4 loss.
Tonight was a night of milestones for many of the players. This was hands down one of the most fantastic games I have been to. Rather than a full game recap, I’ll cover the great moments and then a bit on the atmosphere and in-game experience.
First of all, thank you to Luke from The Pens and the Pen blog for the tickets to tonight’s game. Appreciate offering the tickets to me.
The game started off with Sargent Bob leading the National Anthem. Honestly, everyone is a Jeff Jimmers fan. I get that. But I’m a Sgt. Bob fan. This guy gives me chills because in my opinion, every event where the National Anthem is sung should sound like this. Chills. I love my country. This guy does it right.
- The Pens started the scoring off early, with Jason Williams getting his first goal in a Pens sweater 2:17 into the first period. Alexandre Picard and Craig Adams assisted. I would have loved to have seen the goal, but this guy was in my way:
- Four minutes later, not to be outdone by his teammate, Simon Despres took a pass from Steve Sullivan and one timed it past Ryan Miller for his first NHL goal on the power play. Jason Williams got the second assist, putting him at 2 points for the evening at just over 6 minutes into the game.
- Evgeni Malkin had a dominant presence with the puck tonight. He played on line with Chris Kunitz and James Neal, tallying 8 shots on goal between the three of them. They all made their shots count. Malkin scored his first goal off a pass from Kuni that he took up the middle for the shot and score! Brooks Oprik also got an assist, giving him his 100th career point. 3-0 Pens.
- Ryan Miller is pulled after the Geno goal. Jhonas Enroth goes in. Shame Sidney Crosby wasn’t playing. He makes a fool out of Miller every time they play.
- Thomas Vanek scored a goal, but Carl Sneep banked a pass off the boards to Geno who tucked the puck behind Enroth with a backhanded shot. Geno 2-Miller/Enroth 0. This is Carl Sneep’s 1st NHL point in his 1st NHL game. Picard also got an assist, putting him at 2 points for the night. All of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton guys are now on the stat sheet for the game except for Eric Tangradi.
- Ryan Miller started the second period in net for the Sabres.
- The period started with a power play carried over from the end of the 1st for a hi-sticking call on Paul Szczechura. James Neal took advantage, scoring right before the power play ended off a pass from Geno. My Neal shirt is 3-3 at games for Neal scoring. Just saying. I will probably wear this shirt to every game this season.
- With 2 minutes left in the period, Deryk Engelland got a real funky goal that went under Miller and kinda skidded across the line and into the net. Arron Asham and Pascal Dupuis got the assists, making this Duper’s 300th career point.
- Pens were up 6-1 at the start of the third period. The Sabres are a good third period team and scored two goals, but this was not the beginning of one of the Pens well known third period meltdowns. Enroth is back in net.
- Evgeni Malkin wasn’t done for the night. Too bad all of these people started leaving with 9:18 left in the game and missed the show. But at least they got to keep their hats.
- Marc-Andre Gragnani took his second hooking call of the period, giving Geno the chance he needed to complete his night. Neal passed it to Malkin coming in on the near side. Geno carried the puck across the slot and boom. Enroth can’t do anything to stop it. Consol was more alive than I have seen it in a looooong time. My aunt and I successfully got the “Geno” chant going after the game went back into play. Never underestimate the mouths of two Italian women.
- Geno’s hat trick broke the Big Mac Attack curse. This was Geno’s 7th career hat trick. Enjoy your free Big Macs fans!
- Chris Kunitz wanted in on the scoring action and took a pass from Geno to put the Pens up 8-3. The assist gave Geno his 5th point of the night.
- Game ends, giving Marc-Andre Fleury his 200th career win, making him the 4th youngest goalie to reach the milestone at this point in their career.
Fantastic game. This team is unstoppable. 14 different Pens got points in this game, 7 of them with multiple points including Matt Niskanen and Deryk Engelland. All 6 defensemen had points.
Evengi Malkin: 7th career hat trick
Marc-Andre Fleury: 200th career win, 4th youngest goalie to reach 200
Pascal Dupuis: 300th career point
Brooks Orpik:100th career point
Simon Despres: 1st NHL goal
Carl Sneep: 1st NHL point in his 1st NHL game
Jason Williams: 1st goal as a Penguin
Big Mac Attack dry streak broken
Stars of the game:
3. Jason Williams
2. Simon Despres
1. Evgeni Malkin
Some other notes for the game:
To the guy who was sitting two rows in front of me, thanks for being a complete jagoff and ruining the first 5 minutes of the game and telling the people behind you that you don’t care if we can’t see the net because you waiting 18 years to make it to a Pens game. Good for you, selfish idiot. I don’t know what was so damn important in the stands below you that you felt the need to constantly lean over the rail and look at the crowd. Guess who didn’t come back for the third period who waited 18 years to go to a Pens game…
To the guy directly in front of me, thank you for yelling at the guy down in front when I asked you to please pass the message “Thanks for blocking my view of the goal you douchebag.” You are awesome and my aunt and I had fun with you and your dad!
What is going on with this kid in the orange? Flyers shirt. Found out later from Seth at Emptynetters he had on a Flyers Jagr shersey. What even??!?!
People have GOT to stop leaving with 10 minutes left in the game. It’s disgusting. I cannot find affordable tickets to the game the against the Hurricanes on 12/27 because people are charging $120 or more for the upper bowl. There were rows of emtpy seats everywhere last night. Why is it necessary to charge THAT much for your seats? No one is buying your seats because you are being completely unreasonable and unfair to other fans with your prices. Maybe the arena would be full until the end of the game if you sold the tickets at a fair price so that REAL fans could attend the games.
The first period, Consol was pretty lively. But it trickled away to another game where the fans were comatose. My aunt and I tried real hard throughout the game to get the “Let’s Go Pens!” chants going. No cigar other than the “Geno” chant.
Pens play again on Tuesday against the Blackhawks.
Let’s Go Pens!