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Sidney Crosby and Kris Letang contribute to Penguins' five-goal third to beat Rangers 6-2

For starters, how nice was it to have some hockey back?  I'm not talking about your marketable all-star skills competitions or hockey games, I'm talkin' bonafide-gimme-two-points hockey action.  And a win no less, huh?

Props to the Penguins' defense tonight.  They played a solid game in front of the net, on the man and on the puck.  It was pretty obvious the Rangers had a problem dealing with the scheme, something that similarly baffled them before the all-star break in a 3-0 Fleury shutout.

There were some surprises on offense tonight outside of Petr Sykora's first and third period goals.  Kris Letang tripled his goal production this season with two third period wristers.  Jordan Staal added one of his own on a bizarre bounce-off-skates goal.  At first I thought it went off Marc Staal, but the replay showed Lundqueen simply lost sight of it.

Oh that's right, Sid had a goal of his own.  Actually, goal might be an understatement.  Although it's highly unlikely it'll be recorded as "ridiculous turn-around backhand that caught Lundqueen completely off guard" on the score sheet.

I can't decide what played a bigger factor - the Rangers' horrible power play or the Penguins' great PK.  Either way, New York was held scoreless on three attempts with the man advantage.  Pitt, on the other hand, picked up a PP goal in the third during a gracious 5-on-3.

Big win against a big team.  That makes two in a row for the Pens over the Rangers, with the final season match set for March 28 at Mellon.  Both teams are undefeated in this season series when playing on home ice.

The good: The defense as a whole

The better: Crosby's three assists and phenomenal goal

The best: Kris Letang's two beautifully placed wristers

Next game: Friday.  Devils.  7:30.