Penguins notebook: Neal leaves in 2nd period after being slashed
The Penguins beat the New York Islanders with ease in Game 1 of their Stanley Cup playoffs first-round series Wednesday night at Consol Energy Center but lost left winger James Neal. Neal, who missed eight games in April with a concussion, left early in the second period after being slashed by Islanders defenseman Travis Hamonic and crashing into the boards during a five-on-three power play. Neal appeared to be favoring one leg during the ensuing faceoff. Neal was 10th in the NHL with 21 goals this season, including a hat trick in the season finale against Carolina.
• Penguins captain Sidney Crosby and defenseman Brooks Orpik skated in the morning practice but weren't ready for the postseason opener. Crosby visited the doctor Tuesday and was told that while his broken jaw is improving, he isn't yet ready to absorb contact. “He said everything looks good,” Crosby said. “He just wasn't prepared to clear me to play. Obviously I would have loved the chance to play, but that's not the way it is.” Crosby was struck in the face by an Orpik shot March 30 and hasn't played since. He has been skating in practices for the past five days. Crosby will visit the doctor again shortly, though he isn't certain of a timeframe for when he might return. “I'll just wait and see,” Crosby said. “He wouldn't give me a date.”
• Orpik, who had played in all 75 of the Penguins' playoff games during the past six seasons, missed his first playoff game. He is day to day with a lower-body injury, and has not played since April 23. Deryk Engelland replaced him in the lineup.
• Left winger Tanner Glass scored his first career playoff goal on a wrist shot for a 5-0 lead at 13:07 of the second period. Glass scored one goal during the regular season.
• Pascal Dupuis had his second career two-goal playoff game. He scored his 13th career playoff goal at 13:23 of the first period on a backhander for a 2-0 lead and added another on a five-on-three power play at 1:51 of the second for a 4-0 lead. His other two-goal game came against Vancouver May 8, 2003, when he was a member of the Minnesota Wild.
• With the assist, Adams has scored 16 percent of his points with the Penguins in the playoffs. Of his 63 career points with the Penguins, 10 points (six goals) have come in the postseason.