On this date (November 29th) back in 1991 the defending Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins improved to 12-8-4 by defeating the 8-12-2 Philadelphia Flyers by a whopping 9-3 margin. In proving time is a flat circle, earlier this week of course the Pens (again as defending SC champs) defeated a less-than-.500 Flyers team.
This game looked fun, playing from the Spectrum in Philly where Kevin Stevens opened the scoring with a natural hat trick (his 17th, 18th and 19th goals of the season) all in the first period to put Pittsburgh up 3-0.
A 19-year old Jaromir Jagr then scored in the second period, followed by Stevens’ 4th goal of the game, and Mario Lemieux tacked on another to make a it a commanding 6-0 Pens lead after two periods.
In the third period Philly would show some life, scoring two power play goals, then a third goal just 0:18 after their second goal to make the score 6-3 with 8:01 left to go.
However, one minute after that Mario Lemieux would score his second goal of the contest to push the game out of contention at 7-3. Joe Mullen and Mark Recchi would tack on goals in the dying minutes of the game to get to the 9-3 final score and a very pretty box score from Hockey-Reference:
First, the obligatory thought about just how crazy it is that Jagr is still playing in the NHL 26 years after this game. We hear it enough about how long his career is, but just thinking to take that in is just wild.
Also an obligatory note- the Flyers were only in their 16th year of a championship drought at this point, and this ‘91-92 season would mark the 3rd of 5 straight seasons of missing the playoffs in the pre-Lindros era. Nice of the Flyers in the early ‘90s and mid 2010’s to be completely out of the spotlight while the Pens were racking up titles, eh?
And how about that Pens team? 7 Hall of Famers laced ‘em up on 11/29/91, with Jagr to make 8 HOF’ers whenever he’s finally done. Plus Stevens (4g+1a) was at the height of his powers and certainly playing Hall of Fame caliber hockey as the best power forward of his generation. So out of the 18 skaters, literally half of the lineup for Pittsburgh were hockey immortals. Not bad, not bad at all, and that’s your look at this day in Pittsburgh Penguins history.