Fleury steers Penguins to victory
UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- The teamwork that has made the Penguins so good without their stars over the past two seasons is nice.
Simply having the two best players on the ice also works.
On a night when the Penguins were outplayed, returning center Evgeni Malkin and goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury were the best players on the ice in a 3-0 victory before 10,681 at Nassau Coliseum.
Fleury stopped 33 shots for this 20th career shutout.
"This was not our best effort," center Jordan Staal said. "Flower played so well. We wouldn't have won the game without him. He was unbelievable."
Fleury stopped a number of quality scoring opportunities against one of the league's most talented offensive teams.
And at times, he made it look easy.
"He was really good," said defenseman Brooks Orpik, whose pass sprung right wing Pascal Dupuis for the game's first goal on a breakaway in the first period. "He didn't have to move much to make the saves."
While Fleury didn't have to move much -- a sign that his positioning was impeccable -- Malkin was moving all over the ice. Although he did not register a point for the first time this season, Malkin put on a show at various stages of the game with his skating and playmaking.
Malkin showed few signs of rust. His balky knee did not show any signs of discomfort.
"As usual," Staal said. "Geno looked good coming back. Obviously, it's good to see. We're all pretty excited about what he's going to do."
|Malkin plays fourth game|
|Center Evgeni Malkin returned to the lineup Tuesday, playing only his fourth game of the season.|
|Oct. 6 at Vancouver:||0||1||1|
|Oct. 8 at Calgary||1||0||1|
|Oct. 13 vs. Washington||0||2||2|
|Oct. 25 at N.Y. Islanders||0||0||0|
Richard Park gave the Penguins a 2-0 edge early in the second period, and Staal finished off the win with an empty-net goal for his sixth tally of the season.
The rest of the final two periods, however, belonged to Fleury.
He stoned center John Tavares and defenseman Mark Streit from the slot in the third period. His most spectacular sequence came in the first period, when he made three saves during a rapid-fire attack.
"I thought the Islanders played a good game," Penguins coach Dan Bylsma said. "Our goaltender had to be our best player. Marc-Andre was outstanding."
Fleury even overcame his bizarre habit of losing shutouts late in games.
"Oh my gosh," he said. "I know."
Fleury lost a shutout late against Montreal last week at Consol Energy Center. This time, he made sure he secured his first shutout of the season.
"You have to make the easy saves and the tough saves," Fleury said. "It's all part of being a goalie."
Malkin made nothing look easy, weaving through the Islanders with ease and setting up linemates James Neal and Steve Sullivan with a number of quality opportunities. His performance may have given a glimpse of what could be on the horizon for a season that started with so much promise for the center.
"He looked strong," Bylsma said. "He's a bull on the ice."
How they scored
• Penguins, 1-0 (17:06): RW Pascal Dupuis received a lead pass from D Brooks Orpik and fired a wrist shot past G Evgeni Nabokov's stick side for a breakaway goal.
• Penguins, 2-0 (0:21): C Richard Park finished off a strong shift by pouncing on an Islanders' turnover, skating into the slot and burying a wrist shot off Nabokov's left shoulder.
• Penguins, 3-0 (18:00): C Jordan Staal scored into an empty net from center ice.
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 acquire defensemen Lovejoy, Cole in deadline deals
- Penguins forwards struggle in loss to Avalanche
- Penguins notebook: Crosby says he would play goal if needed
- Crosby, Malkin chase scoring title amid defense-minded league
- Penguins need trade-deadline acquisitions to bring toughness
- Power play shines in Penguins’ home victory over Blue Jackets
- Penguins notebook: Pouliot dazzles in victory over Blue Jackets
- Trade for Winnik gives Penguins competition among bottom six
- Penguins notebook: Team exercising caution with Ehrhoff’s return from concussion
- Penguins GM Rutherford not counting on Dupuis’ return
- Under Rutherford, it’s been a sizeable shakeup for Penguins