Gonchar nets 200th goal in Penguins' win
The Penguins were digging defense Tuesday night after a 3-2 win over the Buffalo Sabres at Mellon Arena.
Defenseman Sergei Gonchar scored his 200th NHL goal, and in the debut of newly acquired defenseman Jordan Leopold the Penguins held Buffalo to five shots on four fruitless power-play chances.
"Our penalty kill was incredible tonight," Penguins backup goalie Brent Johnson said after stopping 26 shots. "They were getting in lanes, doing all the little things to keep (Sabres shooters) from getting good looks.
"That's what it takes to win games against quality teams, and it was a great sign that we came out and played like that after so much off time."
For all but five lineup regulars this was the first hockey game played by most Penguins since a shootout loss at home to Nashville on Feb. 14. Centers Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, goalie Marc-Andre Fleury and defensemen Brooks Orpik and Gonchar all were part of their respective national teams at the Vancouver Games.
Crosby, who scored the winning goal in the gold-medal game Sunday, recorded an assist against Buffalo — as did Malkin, whose Russian squad was eliminated from medal contention by Crosby's Canadian team.
Leopold, acquired Monday for a second-round pick from Florida, skated with Alex Goligoski and played 18 minutes and 12 seconds. He was on the ice for a late goal scored by Sabres center Derek Roy.
"I didn't play my greatest game, but you get rid of that one and you build on it," he said.
Gonchar's ninth goal, winger Pascal Dupuis' 14th and winger Ruslan Fedotenko's ninth accounted for the Penguins' scoring. Defenseman Toni Lydman added a goal for Buffalo.
The Penguins (37-22-4, 78 points) won the season series from Buffalo, going 3-1-0 against a possible first-round playoff opponent. Olympic tournament MVP and Sabers goalie Ryan Miller did not play in two of those and was pulled from one after allowing three goals on 11 shots.
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.
- Penguins GM Rutherford: Malkin’s play belies fact he missed training camp
- Penguins notebook: After slow start, penalty kill on upswing
- Penguins assistant coach Tocchet wants Letang to shoot more on power play
- Penguins’ Crosby OK with Neal comments about trade
- Starkey: Hockey hypocrites, unite
- Penguins’ defenseman Maatta confident of full recovery
- Penguins notebook: Team celebrates ‘Hockey Fights Cancer’ event
- Penguins assistant coach Tocchet marvels at Maatta’s demeanor
- Maatta had been back in groove after offseason surgery
- Predators GM Poile: Penguins’ firing of Shero not fair
- Penguins veteran defenseman Scuderi’s game looking up