Devils Blog: In Lou We Trust
After watching the New Jersey Devils completely dominate the Penguins last season in all six regular season appearances, it's encouraging to see the Pens are off on the right foot in 2010, winning the first two meetings of the year.
This one may have remained a bit too close for comfort, but the Penguins hardly gave any reason to doubt they'd pull off the win and improve to a league-best 19-8-2 in the process.
The only thing more impressive than the Penguins 10-game win streak (second best in franchise history, by the way) is Sidney Crosby's 16-game point streak. Over that span, Sid has amassed 18 goals and 15 assists and rocketed his way to the top of the league's leaders in goals (24) and points (48).
Marc-Andre Fleury's turnaround is nothing to shy at either, as it just keeps getting better and better for the guy who was hung out to dry by a large percentage of the fan base and a good portion of the Pittsburgh media during his slow start to the season. Since posting a 1-6 record over his first eight games, Fleury has gone on to win 11 of his next 12 starts, with the only loss coming in overtime to the Rangers back on November 15.
I always liked Johan Hedberg in Pittsburgh, so to see him play a good game for the Devils while Martin Brodeur is out of the lineup was at least nice to see. Good, but not too good, as he stopped 32 of the 34 shots faced and finished as the third star of the game.
The most encouraging thing to come from this game is a win despite Evgeni Malkin sitting out his second-straight game with a knee injury. Admittedly Geno may not be having the best of years up to this point, but if the Pens can keep winning while he takes time to heal, then it's going to be a win-win when he returns to the lineup.
Next game is Wednesday night at 7:00 against the Maple Leafs.