Johnny on the Spot: Pens Shutout Canes 3-0

Hurricanes Blog: Canes Country

I don't recall who it was (apologies), but someone mentioned during last night's game thread that the Pens would come out looking like a different team tonight and ultimately help out Brent Johnson's case for starting between the pipes.  Hard to say who you give more of the credit to after all is said and done.  Do you chalk it up to the offense, who saw some solid contributions from the grinders Pascal Dupuis and Max Talbot?  Or do you give a hand to Brent Johnson, the man himself, for stopping all of the 33 discs launched his way and improving to 5-0-1 on the season?

Take the jump for more on the Penguins' win.

Earlier this week we saw a one-goal, two-assist performance from Craig Adams go to waste when the Pens fell to the Lightning 5-3.  Saturday against the Canes, the Pens received a little offense from the guys you wouldn't normally see lighting the lamp.  Dupuis notched two (three goals in three games) and Talbot registered his second of the season on a night where the Pens were without Evgeni Malkin.  Word is he sustained a lower-body injury against the Flyers Friday night, and that's pretty much the extent of the details at this point.  Disappointing as it is to see Geno out of the lineup, it's comforting to see the Pens are capable of getting by while he's resting up.

As good as Johnson, Dupuis, Talbot and Crosby (two assists) were against Carolina, you also have to give a collective round of applause for the penalty kill units.  While playing a man down, the Pens killed off all seven of Carolina's power-play opportunities, including 46 seconds of a 5-on-3.  Pittsburgh is currently ranked 12th overall in the PK dept., killing off 84.9% of the other teams' chances on the man advantage.

Crazy as it seems, in just two home games this season the Canes have been shut out in both.  That's six periods of hockey the home crowd has sat through at RBC Center without seeing a goal.  I'd imagine it's somewhat comparable to waiting for the Pens to register their first win at Consol Energy Center.

Pittsburgh has the next four days off now before hitting the road for a three-game road trip through Dallas, Anaheim and Phoenix.  Hopefully by then there's further news of Malkin's injury.  Or, better yet, he's back in the lineup for the trip.

Comment of the night comes from IheartPenguins:

Hope my hometown people treat my Penguins right. Make them some BBQ, lose gracefully, send em’ out with sweet tea. Now that is Southern Hospitality.

No doubt.

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