The Penguins were the dominant ones on an early Arizona power play. Matt Cullen feeds Kris Letang and he puts a shot just off the cross-bar. Tough one for Letang, these were the pucks that were going in last season when he scored a career high 16 goals. This year (2g in 24 games)....not so much. Hopefully he's just saving the good luck for when it counts.
Goal post probs pic.twitter.com/tDRPF787ZX— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) December 13, 2016
Scott Wilson opens the scoring with his 4th goal of the season, on a fairly innocent looking shot. Mike Smith was way deep in the net, took none of the angle away and I'm not sure if the Tom Kuhnhackl + a defenseman screen took his eyes away too long or what but Smith doesn't look good on this one.
Three seconds left in the period and Martin Hanzal high-sticks Sidney Crosby in the face. There is no penalty call because this is the NHL, why would there be a penalty called?
Shots 15-7 Pittsburgh after one.
Crosby misses the first 2 minutes of the second but does return.
Matt Murray makes a big save at point-blank on Radim Vrbata and the Penguins go the other way with the puck. On the ensuing possession, Oliver Ekman-Larsson kind of flubs a pass out right to Nick Bonino who's got a wide-open gift of a goal.
Thanks for lending a helping hand, Ekman-Larsson. pic.twitter.com/rNn1O271tH— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) December 13, 2016
The Pens second line gets in on the act, great shift culminates in making the Coyotes make mistakes (Michael Stone big time whoopsie) and the puck trickles out to Trevor Daley who's able to step into a major slapper
Thanks for lending a helping hand, Stone. pic.twitter.com/V2ZgJuqZX5— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) December 13, 2016
Pittsburgh makes it 4-0 and puts Smith out of his misery, Bryan Rust shoots the puck and Bonino tips it from in front. Not much for Smith to do, his team was almost literally letting the Pens skate circles around them and offering very little resistance. (Goal still officially scored to Rust at time of writing, but might be changed to Bonino by the time
Ekman-Larsson earns an extra unsportsmanlike minor on top of a delay of game for clearing the puck over the glass, and Arizona's in full on meltdown mode. To make matters worse Crosby baseball bats in another goal after Evgeni Malkin 's shot hits the post. 5-0.
Sidney Crosby doesn't do 'boring' goals. pic.twitter.com/3oNDxDi878— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) December 13, 2016
Shots 30-18 Pittsburgh after 2.
Pittsburgh keeps pouring it on. Malkin tees up Phil Kessel who takes a rare (for him) slapshot and blows the puck by the right-handed catching Louis Domingue. 6-0.
TOUCHDOWN! pic.twitter.com/5mckfh1OSe— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) December 13, 2016
Justin Schultz gets on the fun with a PPG from the point to kick the extra point and make it 7-zippy.
- Game might be best summed up like this: in the 3rd period, Kuhnhackl blocks a shot and the puck is out of danger. A few minutes later a Coyote tries to block a shot, he deflects it into the net. One team could do no wrong, the other could do no right and it got ugly.
- The Pens exploded offensively in the 2nd period but were dominant from the opening puck drop. The boys in black and gold came to play tonight, and when they are executing well it can be difficult for anyone to keep up.
- To that end, 3 goals in exactly a 4 minute stretch in the 2nd just crushed the Coyotes. Once the Pens actually turn it on and smell blood in the water, these days with the way they're scoring, it doesn't take long to blow an opponent out.
- That said, Arizona's effort was really poor. Tough night for Stone with multiple faults for goals against, and Smith wasn't sharp either on the opening goal.
- As we noted in the recap above, another piece of anecdotal evidence in the "why do the Penguins play better with Matt Murray in the net?" Murray makes a huge stop with the game 1-0, the Pens score later that shift to make it 2-0 and then 4 minutes later the game is 4-0. Is that all due to Murray's save? No, of course not. But if that game goes 1-1, it doesn't unfold the same way and a lot could have been different.
- Perfect game for the Pens to celebrate the 1-year calendar anniversary of Mike Sullivan. Showcased speed, skill and got a big win, pretty much summing up Sullivan's stint as the Pens bench boss.
- Loved the move by Sullivan to put his varsity power play on the ice with 9 minutes left up 6-0. It's all in context. Martin Hanzal took a penalty by boarding Malkin, Hanzal was the player that high-sticked Crosby in the 1st period and also hit Kris Letang heavy in the 3rd. Want to take liberties in a dangerous fashion? Pay for it on the score board.
- Appropros of nothing, Kuhnhackl's German pal Tobias Rieder is a player I like every time I see it seems like he's doing good things out there. Not sure if Pittsburgh would ever be in a position to acquire him, but I sure wouldn't mind that.
Another huge win and the Pens keep rolling. Six straight W's with the next chance coming back at PPG Paints Arena on Wednesday night when the Bruins come to town.