Fleury lifts Penguins past Blue Jackets
Sergei Bobrovsky collected the Vezina Trophy last summer. Marc-Andre Fleury collected himself.
Before his teammates forced Bobrovsky from the game in the second period, Fleury made a number of sensational saves in the Penguins' 4-2 victory Friday night at Consol Energy Center.
Fleury has tied his finest start to a season at 10-2. He stopped 37 shots in a game that saw Columbus outshoot the Penguins, 39-27.
“Our goaltender was absolutely great tonight,” Penguins coach Dan Bylsma said. “Columbus carried the play for stretches.”
Bobrovsky tasted defeat for only the second time in seven career appearances at Consol Energy Center.
While a member of the Philadelphia Flyers, Bobrovsky won the first game in the arena's history and generally has been unbeatable, his only loss coming in an meaningless game to close the 2011-12 season.
Bobrovsky, though, was no match for the Penguins.
Goals by Chris Kunitz, Brandon Sutter and Kris Letang prompted Columbus coach Todd Richards to pull Bobrovsky, perhaps preserving him for Saturday's rematch at Nationwide Arena.
“It's nice to chase any goalie, whether he won the Vezina or not,” right wing Pascal Dupuis said. “We just need to keep doing the same things we did against him, and we'll be fine.”
Bylsma did not name a goaltender for Saturday. The numbers suggest Fleury gives the Penguins the best chance to win. The Penguins are 0-2 and have allowed 10 goals in the two games backup Jeff Zatkoff has played.
Although the final score indicates otherwise, the Penguins hardly were dominant during their first game of the season against Columbus, now a member of the Eastern Conference.
Columbus held a 15-9 edge in first-period shots, and only Fleury's play and Kunitz's seventh goal lifted the Penguins to a lead.
“Marc-Andre did it again,” Dupuis said. “He was just so sharp. He won us the game tonight.”
Fleury made notable saves on forwards R.J. Umberger, Blake Comeau and Nick Foligno before the game was 10 minutes old.
The 28-year-old goaltender looked as athletic as ever, and with the exception of a couple of early long-range shots, did not permit any tempting rebounds.
“I felt pretty good from the beginning,” Fleury said. “Felt sharp. They had some good chances early, but then we started playing pretty well.”
Bobrovsky wasn't asked to make many quality saves early, but when the Penguins increased the pressure late in the second period, he wasn't the same goaltender who once owned the Penguins.
Kunitz's deflection gave the Penguins a 1-0 lead.
Sutter and Letang scored quickly in the second period to break the game open. Bobrovsky had a good view of Sutter's wrist shot and Letang's one-timer, but both slid through the goaltender's legs.
Fleury has a good view of seemingly every shot right now.
“It's a good win for us,” he said. “We got the job done.”
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Two wild-card format hurting Pirates in short term
- Pitt men’s basketball adds junior-college guard
- Bryant suspension opens doors for other Steelers’ receivers
- Starkey: The kick returner and the grizzly bear
- Animal activists targeting Vick at Steelers preseason game
- Steelers notebook: LB Harrison believes Goodell will prevail in Brady ruling
- Risks don’t get any better as online dating prospers
- Steelers trade 6th-round pick for Jaguars kicker Scobee
- Honored Westmoreland youth counselor sought in theft of money from clients
- Pittsburgh poised to settle lawsuits from deadly flash flood in 2011
- God is touchy topic in ICU, Pitt study finds