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Pens drop Preds 4-1

The Pittsburgh Penguins snap a three game losing streak by dropping the Nashville Predators 4-1 at home.

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sport

Entering tonight's game against the Nashville Predators, the Pittsburgh Penguins were on a three game losing streak in which they only scored one goal per game in each of the three games. So it wouldn't be a very bright start to give up a goal 2:28 into the game. But that happened when Kevin Klein took a slapshot that hit the stick of Evgeni Malkin, the skate of Olli Maatta and then clicked off the skate of Gabriel Bourque before trickling into the net. Marc-Andre Fleury couldn't stop it, but given the triple deflection, who could blame him?

Still, regardless of that early bad break, the Pens stayed the course and rallied back for the next (and last) four goals of the game to win 4-1 against the Preds.

Pascal Dupuis scored on the "James Neal play" shortly after a power play expired in the first period, kudos to Matt D'Agostini for coming in after the faceoff to pop the puck back to Dupuis for D'ags first point as a Penguin. Just three minutes later, Neal himself would score the eventual game winner when he tipped a Malkin shot past Marek Mazanec.

The Pens would never look back from there. In the second period, Malkin worked the puck deep behind the net and fed it out to Kris Letang who quickly beat Mazanec to make it 3-1. Shortly thereafter, Brandon Sutter would roof one by Mazanec to end the scoring in the second. Nashville would pull Mazanec at the end of the period and that would be all of the scoring.

A couple more thoughts on the game:

  • Late in the second period, Tanner Glass dumped Eric Nystrom with a clean check. Nystrom took offense and challenged Glass to a fight. After a spirited bout, Glass opened up a huge cut around Nystrom's eye and then delivered a thumping TKO blow to the back of his head. Scary moment, best wishes to Nystrom.
  • The big lead on the scoreboard led for a better breakout of icetime, with Kris Letang leading the way with a manageable 22:40.
  • Pretty bad night for Matt Niskanen who officially had 2 giveaways in the box score and they were both bad.
  • Long goal droughts broken for Dupuis and Neal. Pens need production from those types of guys and tonight they came through.
  • With 2 assists tonight, Evgeni Malkin was rewarded. He seemed to be the most dangerous and consistent player on the ice tonight.
  • Other than the goal against that was triple deflection off of various skates and sticks, Fleury had a quietly strong night.
  • The Pens first goal was the first even strength goal in 4 games. That's always nice.
  • With 22:03, an assist, a +1, and a blocked shot, Paul Martin didn't miss a beat in his return to the lineup.
  • And now the November schedule heats up for the Pens, who travel to Jersey for a game tomorrow night before heading back to Consol for the Ducks on Monday. At least now the losing streak is over.