NEWARK, N.J. — The Penguins fittingly lost two more players to injury during their final game of 2011 in a 3-1 setback to the New Jersey Devils.
David Clarkson scored the game-winner late in the first period for the Devils, only a few minutes after New Jersey star Ilya Kovalchuk beat Penguins goalie Marc-Andre Fleury on a penalty shot. Left wing Chris Kunitz scored the Penguins' lone goal midway through the third period.
The Penguins lost forwards Pascal Dupuis (upper-body injury) and Arron Asham (lower-body injury) early in the contest. Defenseman Deryk Engelland missed most of the first period with a foot injury and did return.
New Jersey captain Zach Parise put the game away with an empty-net goal.
The Penguins played their most inspired hockey during the final 10 minutes.
Left wing Matt Cooke was robbed by New Jersey goalie Martin Brodeur late in the third during a strong Penguins' surge.
But the Penguins were never able to draw even, unable to fully recover from a slow start. Evgeni Malkin's nine-game scoring streak was snapped.
The Penguins don't play again until Friday when they host the New York Rangers.
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.