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Pens vs. Avalanche recap: Landeskog's 2 goals sink Pittsburgh in OT

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The Penguins gain a point in an overtime game, but lose their first game of the season with Gabriel Landeskog scoring two goals including the OT winner. See the highlights here

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

1st period

Pittsburgh strikes first, Phil Kessel scores his second goal on the power play in as many games, with a quick shot past Calvin Pickard.

Just 36 second later the Pens strike again to make it 2-0. Chris Kunitz and Conor Sheary with some nice board-work and the puck bounces out to Matt Cullen . The ageless wonder puts his own rebound past the goalie and just like that it's 2-0.

However the good times (in this period) were over for good when the Pens started a parade to the penalty box. The other ageless wonder in this game, Jarome Iginla , rifles the puck past Marc-Andre Fleury on a 5v3 to make it 2-1.

(no image, no one on the internet wasted times on the Avs tonight)

Patrick Wiercoch quickly tied the game almost as soon as it happened when he threw a point shot that got past a ton of traffic in front of the net and in.

Shots 12-10 Pens after 1st period.

2nd period

Not much going on, Kunitz puts a clean but pretty heavy check on Iginla, who must have thought he was trying to steal his metamucil so they get in an old person pushing match.

Andreas Martinsen scores a beauty of a goal by kicking the puck in the net, but unfortunately for him that's still not allowed in the NHL.

Shots up to 25-17 after 2 periods, Pittsburgh wins the shot battle 13-7 that period but not too many dangerous chances. Kessel, Malkin and Letang had the puck on their sticks plenty in the o-zone but couldn't generate a goal.

3rd period

After killing a 5v3 (more below) it's the Penguins turn for a goal to get overturned when Evgeni Malkin shoots a puck by Pickard after also swiping his glove hand in the crease and causing Fedor Tyutin to fall into his goalie's way. Probably the right call, all things considered, Geno got a little too anxious with his contact to the goalie.

Pittsburgh gets a goal that does count soon after with Trevor Daley on the power play blasting a shot by Pickard with significant traffic in front of the net (also a trend on this night, like so many nights in the NHL).

But Colorado doesn't go away easily, after yet another Pens penalty (Malkin this time) the Avs PP strikes again with Gabriel Landeskog getting a pass and firing it by Fleury.

Neither team scores again so we head back to the second overtime of the season.

Overtime

3v3 OT is a cruel mistress, just 22 seconds in Landeskog ends it by tipping a puck out of mid-air (that Kris Letang had already deflected as it came in front the outside from Nathan MacKinnon's stick. Not much you can do about that except control the puck and not let the other team have it.

Some Thoughts

  • Darnay already got a Pensburgh recap of how the forecheck started the Cullen goal, be sure to peep that
  • After Evgeni Malkin got high-sticked (sporting a bloodied lip for the rest of the game) Mike Sullivan was angry about no calls. The officials seemingly got the message and called 5 penalties (3 on PGH 2 on COL) in the next 7 minutes of game-play.
  • Kunitz spent time cutting ruts to the box all night. 3 minor penalties in the game, and to make matters worse, twice there was already a teammate in the box, creating eventual 5v3's against.
  • Eric Fehr did some great work on those 3v5's, on the first once he used his size and reach to poke the puck away from an attacker (though they would score soon after) and then on the second 3v5 he was crashing everywhere and blocking shots to defend it.
  • Fleury too was very good on that second 3v5, scrambling like a mad man to keep the puck out of the net.
  • Good to see the JV power play unit get on the board after the top guns were tired, the 2nd team got the start for the PP and also the conclusion with the goal by Daley.
  • Pens gave up 6 power plays, though and surrendered 2 goals. Some of the calls were near ticky-tack, but the refs did call it both ways (Pittsburgh got 5 PP's themselves) and were consistent enough to maintain a fairly consistent bar of what a penalty was, just looked like neither team was smart/lucky enough to avoid crossing the line.
  • A ton of penalties throughout the game but late it looked like the Pens were working Kessel and Malkin together for some stretches, with HBK also still stick together in the 3rd as well.

Pensburgh 3 stars of the night

(Season long effort to track the 3 best Penguins players of the game)

*** Kessel (1 PPG, 20 minutes played)

** Daley (1 PPG)

* Cullen (1G, 1A)